Throwing its fins into the proverbial pool with various water-bourne robots such as the Strider
, the CMU Water Runner
, and whatever this creep
is called, is the new STRIDE -- soon to be the aforementioned Strider's enemy number one. The name stands for Surface Tension Robotic Insect Dynamic Explorer, and
the minuscule bot works by mimicking the strider insect and skirting along the surface of the water using hydrophobic wire legs coated in Teflon. Researchers discovered that the 1-gram bot could carry a 9.3-gram payload without breaking the surface by utilizing a sculling motion for movement. The robot is 10-15 times slower than the actual insect and 10 times larger, but the engineers hope to lower the bot's size and increase its speed by downsizing its build, along with expanding its capabilities by harnessing technologies such as sensors, wireless communication, and autonomous control.