Design of a Bioinspired Underwater Glider for Oceanographic Research

Diana C. Hernández-Jaramillo, Rafael E. Vásquez

Producción científica: Contribución a una revistaArtículo en revista científica indexadarevisión exhaustiva

1 Cita (Scopus)


The Blue Economy, which is based on the sustainable use of the ocean, is demanding better understanding of marine ecosystems, which provide assets, goods, and services. Such understanding requires the use of modern exploration technologies, including unmanned underwater vehicles, in order to acquire quality information for decision-making processes. This paper addresses the design process for an underwater glider, to be used in oceanographic research, that was inspired by leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea), which are known to have a superior diving ability and enhanced hydrodynamic performance. The design process combines elements from Systems Engineering and bioinspired design approaches. The conceptual and preliminary design stages are first described, and they allowed mapping the user’s requirements into engineering characteristics, using quality function deployment to generate the functional architecture, which later facilitated the integration of the components and subsystems. Then, we emphasize the shell’s bioinspired hydrodynamic design and provide the design solution for the desired vehicle’s specifications. The bioinspired shell yielded a lift coefficient increase due to the effect of ridges and a decrease in the drag coefficient at low angles of attack. This led to a greater lift-to-drag ratio, a desirable condition for underwater gliders, since we obtained a greater lift while producing less drag than the shape without longitudinal ridges.

Idioma originalInglés
Número de artículo80
EstadoPublicada - mar. 2023

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© 2023 by the authors.

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