Robot Swarm's Mission: Kill Jellyfish
South Korean 'bots aim to catch them in nets and slice them up
By Arden Dier, Newser Staff
Posted Oct 4, 2013 7:15 AM CDT
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(Newser) – Flesh-shredding robots that can devour 2,000 pounds an hour may sound like the stuff of horror movies, but they're very real and come with a purpose: kill jellyfish. Engineers in South Korea are working on something called the Jellyfish Elimination Robotic Swarm to cut down deadly attacks on humans, losses to fisheries, and, yes, even nuclear plant closures, reports Discovery. It's big business, notes Fast Company: South Korean marine industries lost an estimated $300 million because of jellyfish in 2009 alone. Though still in the tinkering stage, the makers hope to commercialize the robots by next year.

So how do they work? Equipped with a GPS and camera to detect jellyfish swarms, three robots travel together on the surface via propulsion motors, scooping up jellyfish in submerged nets. A shredding propeller takes care of the rest—think of it as a "jellyfish terminator," explains the Telegraph. (On behalf of the jellyfish, Discovery's Alyssa Dangelis writes that while "judicious and closely monitored checks on jellyfish swarms" seem warranted, the creatures shouldn't be eradicated.) Also in the works: Figuring out how the system might be used for other purposes, like cleaning up trash from the sea. (Maybe it could tackle one of those floating "plastic patches"?)

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Showing 3 of 21 comments
HMD-SMD-ITY
Oct 4, 2013 10:37 PM CDT
Box type are the killers but they all hurt. Divers researching them in Australia sealed themselves up tight as a drum and one single stinging cell got into a suit. The guy spent a month in hospital.
rickydarlin
Oct 4, 2013 10:05 PM CDT
and..... when you chop them up......eggs and sperm mix and there is a thousand times more of them
Filthy_Lucre
Oct 4, 2013 7:28 PM CDT
Jellyfish enjoy a form of immortality. They get grow up, reproduce then un-age to grow up and do it again.