An invention that could change how we explore the depths of the ocean and monitor pollution levels, this MIT camera is a revolutionary device that’s wireless, battery-free, and can work underwater for weeks at a time.
According to MIT News, this new underwater camera is about “100,000 times more energy-efficient than other undersea cameras” and can capture and transmit color photos even in the dark underwater depths.
How does it work?
Ingeniously, this camera is powered by sound.
The camera takes the mechanical energy generated by sound waves traveling through water and turns it into the power it needs to capture and transmit images. You can see in the diagram C below how the setup works.
“We demonstrate wireless battery-free imaging of animals, plants, pollutants, and localization tags in enclosed and open-water environments. The method’s self-sustaining nature makes it desirable for massive, continuous, and long-term ocean deployments with many applications including marine life discovery, submarine surveillance, and underwater climate change monitoring,” say the authors of the invention, who published their research on Nature.com.
They also say that underwater cameras are also important to support global aquaculture food production. They can do so by detecting diseases, monitoring harmful algae blooms and regulating fish feeding patterns.