Tag Archives: Mobile Fish Tanks

Watch some fish steer their own tanks 

These two projects give ‘Go Fish’ a much more literal meaning.

Oh, boy! This is gonna be good, I can tell.” 


Sure, we may still be a few years away from ubiquitous autonomous cars, but what about the world’s first driverless vehicle for fish? Believe it or not, this is actually something that several folks have sought to make a reality.

First, there’s Dutch design group Studio Diip who back in 2014 modded an existing tank with wheels and sensors that enabled its inhabitant to operate the vehicle by swimming in a specific direction. According to its creators, the aptly dubbed Fish on Wheels was “an attempt to liberate fish all over the world.”


A transparent tank is equipped with a webcam positioned above the water, a battery-powered Beagleboard-XM and an Arduino-controlled robotic car. The camera tracks the fish’s movement using the contrast between the fish and the bottom of the tank. Meanwhile, little Nemo’s position inside the tank is then employed to send commands to the Arduino to steer the gadget in that direction. The whole device is completely standalone.

“Up until now driving vehicles has been limited to mankind only, but now your pet fish can also put the pedal to the metal,” the team writes.

Interestingly enough, Studio Diip weren’t the only ones hoping to “encourage more development in enhanced pet mobility.” Maker Adam Ben-Dror recently trained his Siamese fighting fish (named José) to not only jump out of the water to get food on command, but to follow his hand as he circles it around the outside of the bowl.


Knowing that José is more than a mindless creature with just three-second memory, Ben-Dror decided his fish should have more freedom to swim around more than just the confines of its 1.5-foot-wide tank. That is what led the Maker to create the Abovemarine, a vehicle that allows his pet — or any other fish — to roam around and interact with its fellow land dwellers.

The Abovemarine is equipped with an Arduino and a camera that tracks José’s movement in real-time, while a computer running OpenCV processes the directional information and actuates the mobile tank’s three omni wheels.