Compared to the conventional rigid robots, the soft robots driven by soft active materials possess unique advantages with their high adaptability in field exploration and seamless interaction with human. As one type of soft robot, soft aquatic robots play important roles in the application of ocean exploration and engineering. However, the soft robots still face grand challenges, such as high mobility, environmental tolerance, and accurate control. Here, we design a soft robot with a fully integrated onboard system including power and wireless communication. Without any motor, dielectric elastomer (DE) membrane with a balloonlike shape in the soft robot can deform with large actuation, changing the total volume and buoyant force of the robot. With the help of pressure sensor, the robot can move to and stabilize at a designated depth by a closed-loop control. The performance of the robot has been investigated both experimentally and theoretically. Numerical results from the analysis agree well with the results from the experiments. The mechanisms of actuation and control may guide the further design of soft robot and smart devices.

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