Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Swimming Like a Dolphin

FINA and swimsuit manufacturers around the world recently recommended several changes to its current FINA Requirements for Swimwear Approval, but Ted Ciamillo simply wants to go fast in the water.

An aquatic engineer Ted< has invented the Lunocet, a 1-meter-wide, semi-flexible monofin made of carbon fiber and fiberglass that gives swimmers tremendous propulsion (up to 13K or 8 miles per hour) while enabling individuals to sustain a stead pace because it transfers 80% of swimmer's energy into thrust.

Ted explains, "The Lunocet uses principles of biomimetics. That is, adapting designs from nature to work with our own bodies. I basically took a dolphin tail and made it work with our legs."

"The mechanism functions like a wing to generate a lift force, which is directed forward and turned into thrust," says Frank Fish, a marine biologist at West Chester University of Pennsylvania. "This propulsive mechanism is extremely efficient compared to conventional rigid marine propellers."

What is pretty cool is the ability for some swimmers to be able to completely breach out of the water like whales using the Lunocet. Ted envisions a new concept that he calls hydrotouring where people can do long-distance swims using the Lunocet to cover dozens of miles a day with participants carrying streamlined, waterproof packs containing a GPS.

A review of the Lunocut by accomplished free diver Chris Morey (shown above in blue) is located here.

The Lunocet reminds us of the Disney Dream Portrait entitled "Where Another World is Just a Wish Away," which showed Michael Phelps portraying a merman (see Michael on left preparing for the photo shoot).

Photograph of Chris Morey< by Jason Lome. Disney Dream Portait by Anne Leibovitz.

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source

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