New words – 22 August 2022

mussels growing on ropes
Dreamer Company / iStock / Getty Images Plus

sea allotment noun [C]
UK /ˈsiː əˌlɒt.mənt/ US /ˈsiː əˌlɑːt.mənt/
a small area of the sea that someone rents for growing shellfish, edible seaweed etc.

As with land-based allotments, members of a sea allotment society share an area granted to them by local authorities and use it to cultivate food. The difference is that instead of a field, growers share a patch of the ocean. In the case of Kerteminde Maritime Haver, it is the Great Belt – the strait between Funen island and Denmark’s capital island, Zealand. Here, ropes strung between buoys are hung with mussels and sea kelp.
[, 25 June 2022]

robo-fish noun [C]
UK /ˈrəʊ.bəʊˌfɪʃ/ US /ˈroʊ.boʊˌfɪʃ/
a very small robot that looks like a fish, designed to remove very small pieces of plastic from the seas and oceans

Engineers at the Polymer Research Institute of Sichuan University have devised a tiny robo-fish that can flap around a body of water, grabbing microplastics as it goes. The 13mm robot uses a light laser system in its tail to propel itself at approximately 30mm a second. If the robot experiences damage during a swim, it can repair itself and continue the job without outside intervention.
[, 23 June 2022]

crab-bot noun [C]
UK /ˈkræbˌbɒt/ US /ˈkræbˌbɑːt/
a very small robot that looks like a crab, designed to enter the human body

The inventors of a flea-sized robot crab have suggested that future versions could travel through the arteries of patients with heart disease to clear blockages. Measuring about half a millimetre across, the “crab-bot” is said to be the smallest remote-controlled walking robot. It can scurry sideways, turn and jump.
[, 26 May 2022]

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