While most ocean life relies entirely on wave-like undulation to move through the water, the soft bodies of cephalopods (e.g., octopuses, squids and cuttlefish) allow many modes of locomotion, including hydrojetting.. Of all man-made systems, torpedoes come closest to achieving the same speeds and efficiency; however, their propulsion method relies primarily on the use of a large quantity of fuel. We aim to fabricate a soft-robotic combustion chamber for subaquatic propulsion that mimics the cephalopods' biological systems.
We chose to use combustion so that we can achieve a more rapid/greater expansion of the chamber than would be possible with the use of standard pressurized gasses. Rapid inflation is necessary so that, while the camber expands, it exerts a large force on the water in a short period of time. This results in an impulse that causes movement.