How lateral-line sensing can enable swimming fish to judge their relative position and kinematic synchronization with a neighbor

Flow field computed around a pair of swimming fish. The pressure and shear-stress signals along the sides of the protagonist fish are monitored while changing the relative position and tail-beat phase lag of the companion fish.

For fish, swimming in group may be favorable to individuals. Several works reported that in a fish school, individuals sense and adjust their relative position to prevent collisions and maintain the group formation. Also, from a hydrodynamic perspective, relative-position and kinematic synchronisation between adjacent fish may considerably influence their swimming performance. Fish may sense the relative-position and tail-beat phase difference with their neighbors using both vision and the lateral-line system, however, when swimming in dark or turbid environments, visual information may become unavailable. To understand how lateral-line sensing can enable fish to judge the relative-position and phase-difference with their neighbors, in this study, based on a verified three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics approach, we simulated two fish swimming adjacently with various configurations. The lateral-line signal was obtained by sampling the surface hydrodynamic stress. The sensed signal was processed by Fast Fourier Transform (FFT), which is robust to turbulence and environmental flow. By examining the lateral-line pressure and shear-stress signals in the frequency domain, various states of the neighboring fish were parametrically identified. Our results reveal that the FFT-processed lateral-line signals in one fish may potentially reflect the relative-position, phase-differences, and the tail-beat frequency of its neighbor. Our results shed light on the fluid dynamical aspects of the lateral-line sensing mechanism used by fish. Furthermore, the presented approach based on FFT is especially suitable for applications in bioinspired swimming robotics. We provide suggestions for the design of artificial systems consisting of multiple stress sensors for robotic fish to improve their performance in collective operation.

Hydrodynamical Fingerprint of a Neighbour in a Fish Lateral Line
G. Li, D. Kolomenskiy, H. Liu, B. Thiria & R. Godoy-Diana Frontiers in Robotics and AI: Bio-Inspired Robotics section 9, 825889 (2022)
doi: 10.3389/frobt.2022.825889

Synchronized Side-by-Side Swimmers

On the fluid dynamical effects of synchronization in side-by-side swimmers
R. Godoy-Diana, J. Vacher, V. Raspa & B. Thiria
Biomimetics 4(4), 77 (2019)
(in the Special issue “Fluid Dynamic Interactions in Biological and Bioinspired Propulsion”, Editors K. W. Moored and G. V. Lauder)

We examined experimentally the in-phase and anti-phase synchronized swimming of two self-propelled independent flexible foils swimming side-by-side in a water tank. The foils are actuated by pitching oscillations at one extremity—the head of the swimmers—and the flow engendered by their undulations is analyzed using two-dimensional particle image velocimetry in their frontal symmetry plane. Following recent observations on the behavior of real fish, we focus on the comparison between in-phase and anti-phase actuation by fixing all other geometric and kinematic parameters. We show that swimming with a neighbor is beneficial for both synchronizations tested, as compared to swimming alone, with an advantage for the anti-phase synchronization. We show that the advantage of anti-phase synchronization in terms of swimming performance for the two-foil “school” results from the emergence of a periodic coherent jet between the two swimmers.

PhD defense: Salomé Gutiérrez-Ramos. Acoustic confinement of Escherichia coli: The impact on biofilm formation

PhD defense on October 18th, 2018, 2:30pm, at the PMMH meeting room (Sorbonne Université, Barre Cassan, Bât. A 1er Étage, 7 Quai Saint Bernard, 75005 Paris).

Acoustic confinement of Escherichia coli: The impact on biofilm formation

Brownian or self-propelled particles in aqueous suspensions can be trapped by acoustic fields generated by piezoelectric transducers usually at frequencies in the Megahertz. The obtained confinement allows the study of rich collective behaviours like clustering or spreading dynamics in microgravity-like conditions. The acoustic field induces the levitation of self-propelled particles and provides secondary lateral forces to capture them at nodal planes. Here, we give a step forward in the field Continue reading “PhD defense: Salomé Gutiérrez-Ramos. Acoustic confinement of Escherichia coli: The impact on biofilm formation”

Synchronisation and pattern formation in fish swimming


Simple phalanx pattern leads to energy saving in cohesive fish schooling
I. Ashraf, H. Bradshaw, T. T. Ha, J. Halloy, R. Godoy-Diana, B. Thiria
PNAS 114 (36) 9599-9604 (2017)
[doi:10.1073/pnas.1706503114]PDF file

Synchronisation and collective swimming patterns in Hemigrammus bleheri
I. Ashraf, R. Godoy-Diana, J. Halloy, B. Collignon, B. Thiria
Journal of the Royal Society Interface 13 20160734 (2016)
[doi:10.1098/rsif.2016.0734] PDF file

The question of how individuals in a population organize when living in groups arises for systems as different as a swarm of microorganisms or a flock of seagulls. The different patterns for moving collectively involve a wide spectrum of reasons, such as evading predators or optimizing food prospection. Also, the schooling pattern has often been associated with an advantage in terms of energy consumption. We use a popular aquarium fish, the red nose tetra fish, Hemigrammus bleheri, which is known to swim in highly cohesive groups, to ana- lyze the schooling dynamics. In our experiments, fish swim in a shallow-water tunnel with controlled velocity, Continue reading “Synchronisation and pattern formation in fish swimming”