Against the flow: A Braitenberg controller for a fish robot

Taavi Salumäe*, Iñaki Rañó, Otar Akanyeti, Maarja Kruusmaa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Proceeding (Non-Journal item)

43 Citations (Scopus)


Underwater vehicles do not localise or navigate with respect to the flow, an ability needed for many underwater tasks. In this paper we implement rheotaxis behaviour in a fish robot, a behaviour common to many aquatic species. We use two pressure sensors on the head of the robot to identify the pressure differences on the left and right side and control the heading of the fish robot by turning a servo-motor actuated tail. The controller is inspired by the Braitenberg vehicle 2b, a simple biological model of tropotaxis, that has been used in many robotic applications. The experiments, conducted in a flow pipe with a uniform flow, show that the robot is able to orient itself, and keep the orientation, to the incoming current. Our results demonstrate that guidance of a fish robot relative to a flow can be implemented as a simple rheotaxis behaviour using two sensors and a Braitenberg 2b controller.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2012 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, ICRA 2012
PublisherIEEE Press
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)9781467314039
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jun 2012
Externally publishedYes
EventRobotics and Automation - Saint Paul, MN, United States of America
Duration: 14 May 201218 May 2012
Conference number: 2012

Publication series

NameProceedings - IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation
ISSN (Print)1050-4729


ConferenceRobotics and Automation
Abbreviated titleICRA
Country/TerritoryUnited States of America
CitySaint Paul, MN
Period14 May 201218 May 2012


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