Scientists have developed a tiny, ingestible 3D-printed snake-like robot that can navigate through the small intestines, and could one day be used to visualise the digestive system in real time.
The robot, called SAW (single actuator wave-like robot), moves in a wave-like motion and can travel through the extremely squishy environment of the small intestine, researchers said.
Rotating helix shape
“The external shape of the robot is a 2D projection of a rotating helix. The result is a continuously moving wave. We can simply reverse the direction by reversing the direction of rotation of the motor,” said David Zarrouk, a mechanical engineer at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel.