Microscopic robots that canto move within our body has long ceased to be something incredible and, most likely, sooner or later will find their application in medicine. But another thing remains interesting: all the robots existing at the moment are based on a variety of displacement technologies. And recently, experts from the University of Exeter (UK) presented one of the most interesting ones. It is based on the creation of robots with a ferromagnetic head.
According to the editors of Physics of Fluids,The robot consists of two main parts: the already mentioned ferromagnetic head and the flexible movable flagella at the other end. The dynamic characteristics of a swimmer robot at the air-liquid interface are investigated depending on the frequency and amplitude of the external magnetic field. At the same time, by changing the length of the flagellum, it was possible to achieve that it is possible to precisely control the movement of the robot, forcing it to move in the desired direction.
Geometric configuration of the robot model (a) and a schematic depiction of a ferromagnetic particle (b)
The robot device itself is quite simple: At one end there is a head made of ferromagnetic material, having in its composition neodymium, iron and boron. The crystal lattice of a substance has a tetragonal form and allows it to have good ferromagnetic properties. The head is made in the form of a cube with a face equal to 0.5 millimeter. At the other end of the microbot is a movable flagellum (or tail).
The movement of the robot was borrowed from theof nature. A jugular of unicellular and some cells of animals (for example, spermatozoa), moving, creates turbulence of fluid flows, which allows to move. The flagellum robot does the same.
Measurement of fluid flow rate depending on frequency. Here is a schematic representation of a robot with a ferromagnetic particle as a pump.
About the scope of the robot creators have not yetthey say, noting that using it in medical practice can achieve amazing results. For example, by applying targeted drug delivery or as a device for diagnosing diseases and monitoring health status.
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