Skip to main content Accessibility help

Water bouncing robots: a first step toward large-scale water running robots

  • Paolo Gallina (a1), Gabriele Bulian (a1) and Giovanni Mosetti (a1)


Robots running on water have attracted the attention of researchers in the last decades as an alternative to conventional aquatic propulsion mechanisms. Up to now, a large scale robot capable of running on water has not been realized. Bouncing on water is a prerequisite for running on water. For this reason, the development of a water bouncing robot represents a necessary first step. The paper presents the model of a 2-degree-of-freedom water bouncing robot inspired by the pogo-stick, a device for jumping off the ground in a standing position. An analytical model of the impact force between “robot's foot” and water is provided for both water-entry and water-exit phases. Such a model has been integrated in a dynamic simulation of whole robot. The model represents a useful and general framework to gain an insight into the parameters that characterize the efficiency of robot.


Corresponding author

*Corresponding author. E-mail:


Hide All
1.Bush, J. W. M. and Hu, D. L., “Walking on water: Bio-locomotion at the interface,” Annu. Rev. Fluid Mech. 38, 339369 (2006).
2.De Backer, G., Vantorre, M., Beels, C., De Pré, J., Victor, S., De Rouck, J., Blommaert, C. and Van Paepegem, W., “Experimental investigation of water impact on axisymmetric bodies,” Appl. Ocean Res. 31, 143156 (2009).
3.Faltinsen, O. M., Hydrodynamics of High Speed Marine Vehicles (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 2005).
4.Faltinsen, O. and Zhao, R., “Water Entry of Ship Sections and Axisymmetric Bodies,” Proceedings of the AGARD FDP Workshop on High Speed Body Motion in Water, Kiev, Ukraine (Sep. 1–3, 1997) pp. 24-1–24-11.
5.Floyd, S. and Sitti, M., “Design and development of the lifting and propulsion mechanism for a biologically inspired water runner robot,” IEEE Trans. Robot. 24 (3), 698709 (2008).
6.Floyd, S., Adilak, S., Ramirez, S., Rogman, R. and Sitti, M., “Performance of Different Foot Designs for a Water Running Robot,” Proceedings – IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, 4543216 (2008) pp. 244–250.
7.Glasheen, J. W. and McMahon, T. A., “Size-dependence of water-running ability in basilisk lizards (Basiliscus basiliscus),” J. Exp. Biol. 199, 26112618 (1996a).
8.Glasheen, J. and McMahon, T., “A hydrodynamic model of locomotion in the basilisk lizard,” Nature 380, 340342 (1996b).
9.Glasheen, J. and McMahon, T., “Vertical water entry of disks at low Froude numbers,” Phys. Fluids 8, 20782083 (1996c).
10.Hyun, S. P., Floyd, S. and Sitti, M., “Dynamic Modelling of a Basilisk Lizard-Inspired Quadruped Robot Running on Water,” Proceedings of the IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), 4651084 (2008) pp. 3101–3107.
11.Lamb, H., Hydrodynamics, 6th ed. (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, 1932).
12.Martin, P. A., “On the added mass of rippled discs,” J. Eng. Math. 33, 421435 (1998).
13.Pandey, J., Reddy, N. S., Ray, R. and Shome, S. N., “Biological Swimming Mechanism Analysis and Design of Robotic Frog,” IEEE International Conference on Mechatronics and Automation (IEEE ICMA 2013), 6618176 (2013) pp. 1726–1731.
14.Piro, D. and Maki, K. J., “Hydroelastic Wedge Entry and Exit,” Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Fast Sea Transportation (FAST 2011), Honolulu, Hawaii (Sep. 2011).
15.Scolan, Y. M. and Korobkin, A. A., “Three-dimensional theory of water impact, part 1 inverse wagner problem,” J. Fluid Mech. 440, 293326 (2001).
16.Shin, B., Kim, H.-Y. and Cho, K.-J., “Towards a Biologically Inspired Small-Scale Water Jumping Robot,” 2nd Biennial IEEE/RAS-EMBS International Conference on Biomedical Robotics and Biomechatronics (BioRob 2008), 4762896 (2008) pp. 127–131.
17.Von Karman, T., “The Impact on Seaplane Floats during Landing,” Tech. Note No. 321 (NACA, Washington, 1929).
18.Wang, L., Gao, T., Gao, F., Dong, L. and Wu, J., “Dynamic Research on a Water Walking Robot Inspired by Water Striders,” Proceedings of the Second International Symposium on Computer Science and Computational Technology, Huangshan, P.R. China (Dec. 26–28, 2009) pp. 439–442.
19.Wagner, H., “Über stoss und gleitvorgänge an der oberfläche von Flüssigkeiten,” Z. Angew. Math. Mech. 12 (4), 193235 (1932).
20.Zhang, X., Zhao, J., Zhu, Q., Chen, N., Zhang, M. and Pan, Q., “Bioinspired aquatic microrobot capable of walking on water surface like a water strider,” ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 3 (7), 26302636 (2011).
21.Zhao, J., Zhang, X., Chen, N. and Pan, G., “Why superhydrophobicity is crucial for a water-jumping microrobot? Experimental and theoretical investigations,” ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 4 (7), 37063711 (2012).


Related content

Powered by UNSILO

Water bouncing robots: a first step toward large-scale water running robots

  • Paolo Gallina (a1), Gabriele Bulian (a1) and Giovanni Mosetti (a1)


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed.