The scientific world is no stranger to robotic assistance in collecting, observing, and analyzing data. No one knows this better than Northeastern University Professors Mark Patterson and Joseph Ayers, both recently featured in Men’s Journal regarding their developments with underwater robots.

An autonomous underwater vehicle, or AUV, can be used to collect any type of data for which environmental sensors exist. For Mark Patterson’s Fetch family of AUVs, this can include oxygen levels and krill counts. In the Men’s Journal piece, Patterson says “’All these robots are taxicabs for sensors,” and Fetch, weighing in at 220 pounds, can offer quite a ride.

Joseph Ayers on the other hand deals with a much smaller AUV, called Robolobster, which resembles and moves like a real lobster. Ayers is currently “working to imbue Robolobster with real lobster behaviors, a field known as biomimetics.”