Researchers from several universities have joined forces to create the world's first robotic jellyfish. But they're not just copping the jelly's style cause it looks cool. They've adopted the jelly aesthetic because it better allows the robot to draw its power from the elements present in the water around it. The circular muscles inside the robot's bell-shaped body actually run on water components, using oxygen and hydrogen gases to contract. As far as the scientists know, they're the first to develop an underwater robot that uses external hydrogen as a fuel source.
Besides floating around looking awesome, the robot jelly could have a whole host of other purposes. The research teams figure they could eventually develop an autonomous underwater robot for rescue missions or possibly attach a few cameras to it and use it as a constant aquatic surveillance device. They've secured funding from the US Navy's Office of Naval Research, so they should have plenty of funds with which to experiment with different uses for the little dude.