writes to mention a NewScientist article about a new mucus-riding robot
, intended for use in medical examinations of the intestinal tract. The snail-like bot, it is hoped, will be easier on the internal organs of patients than similar robots which use small leg-like structures. From the article: "Dodou is testing a polymer material that clings to proteins found in the mucus that lines the gut. She measured the polymer's sticky properties in the lab using sections of pig gut, and also examined the way the polymer's stickiness can be 'switched off' by spraying it with water. This could allow a robot to move in a manner similar to a snail, which alternately makes itself sticky and slippery by exerting pressure with its body."