Developing innovative solutions,
fighting plastic pollution
Plastic waste in the world's oceans has become a huge problem.
Accumulating in five of the Earth's major gyres, plastic waste forms huge garbage patches all over the planet; some twice the size of France.
Clearly, the best way to tackle the problem would be to reduce global plastic consumption; but this will be a lengthy process.
Action needs to be taken now to fight the plastic gyres,
and numerous cleanup operations are springing up all over the world.
We believe that cleanup efforts for ocean plastics will be most effective when concentrated close to shore, at the source of the problem;
collecting the plastic before it even has a chance to join the growing gyres.
By placing plastic collectors along coastlines, nearly one-third of plastic in the ocean could be removed over the next 10 years*.
OUR CONCEPT – LES PLASTIVORES
We are currently designing a fleet of autonomous, self-sufficient boats,
able to collect plastic waste from coastlines and polluted waterways.
They will work together, under the command of a mothership.
Their small size and slow speed – the size of an adult man, jogging – means they pose little threat to wildlife, while being able to access hard to reach and heavily polluted areas.
Designed to be stacked together, they are easy to store and transport onboard the mothership.
Powered by solar energy and controlled remotely, they are cheap to operate, and able to work continually – tackling plastic pollution 24/7.
Alongside the collection of plastic waste, Les Plastivores are also capable of:
- Sonar readings (mapping the seabed & detecting plastic waste)
- Water quality tests
- Video & photography
Developed with Open Source Technology
WEIGHT: 15 Kg
SPEED: 0.5-2 KNOTS
ElectroniCS: Arduino Mega (Ardupilot) & Raspberry Pi
SOLAR PANEL: 100W
running time: unlimited
Each plastivore - the size of a ten year old child - is autonomous and self-powered.
They scoop up plastic waste using a basket which hangs between their catamaran-like hulls.
When their baskets are full, our plastivores come back to the Mothership to unload.
Our mothership is equipped with a machine which transforms the plastic waste into new plastivores.
By deploying a fleet of plastivores around a mothership,
we are able to cover large area - quickly and costeffectively.
Equipped with an anti-collision sensor and 'go home' feature, our plastivores work safely even in busy waterways and adverse weather conditions.
We decided to develop a fleet of small boats to collect the plastic waste rather than a large ship, so that our Plastivores are:
Powered by solar energy
Minimal disturbance to the environment (small, quiet, slow-moving)
Developed with Open Source Technology
Made from recycled plastic
Able to work anywhere
In small, narrow and crowded waterways - due to small size
On open sea - transported, stored & protected by the mothership
Acting as a primary defence in the fight against plastic pollution,
our Plastivores operate in waterways leading to the oceans.
It is much easier and more efficient to collect plastic waste in its original form, before it has been degraded or washed into the oceans.
With further developments, our PlastiVores will be able to
join other clean-up initaitives to also tackle the Plastic Gyres.
In July 2017 we took our prototypes 'Igor' and 'Hektor' to Ireland, Iceland, Greenland and the Azores.
The aim of the expedition was to test our ASVs capability of cleaning closed waterways, taking underwater imagery and bathymetry readings in all weather conditions and sea states,
as well as testing the robustness and user-friendliness of the software.
The expedition was a great success, and we are now producing our ASVs in kit form.
Contact us for more information and to make your order -
our first batch of kits will be delivered in January 2018.
*"Modeling marine surface microplastic transort to assess optimal removal locations", Enivromental research letters, Sherman P. and E. Van Sebille