£20,000 robo-fish swims like the real thing

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robofish.jpgMeet robo-fish – a £20,000 battery-powered machine that swims like the real thing.

The yellow lookalike is fitted with sensors to detect leakages from ships or undersea pipelines. And it can analyse a pollutant in seconds – an important improvement on collecting samples and waiting weeks for a result.

Using expertise from the universities of Essex and Strathclyde, the first of the 1.5m (5ft) ‘fish’ has been tested off northern Spain.

The project’s developers hope to be able to sell the technology to water companies, port authorities and anyone with an interest in monitoring water quality.

It could also have spin-offs for search and rescue at sea, they added.