Scientific Reports (Sep 2020)

A protein-coated micro-sucker patch inspired by octopus for adhesion in wet conditions

  • Gabriella Meloni,
  • Omar Tricinci,
  • Andrea Degl’Innocenti,
  • Barbara Mazzolai

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 10, no. 1
pp. 1 – 7


Read online

Abstract In medical robotics, micromanipulation becomes particularly challenging in the presence of blood and secretions. Nature offers many examples of adhesion strategies, which can be divided into two macro-categories: morphological adjustments and chemical adaptations. This paper analyzes how two successful specializations from different marine animals can converge into a single biomedical device usable in moist environments. Taking inspiration from the morphology of the octopus sucker and the chemistry of mussel secretions, we developed a protein-coated octopus-inspired micro-sucker device that retains in moist conditions about half of the adhesion it shows in dry environments. From a robotic perspective, this study emphasizes the advantages of taking inspiration from specialized natural solutions to optimize standard robotic designs.