Environment

Ocean Cleanup concept to become a reality next year

Ocean Cleanup concept to becom...
The 2,000 m (6,600 ft) Ocean Cleanup system will be deployed off the coast of Tsushima island in the Korea Strait
The 2,000 m (6,600 ft) Ocean Cleanup system will be deployed off the coast of Tsushima island in the Korea Strait
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The 2,000 m (6,600 ft) Ocean Cleanup system will be deployed off the coast of Tsushima island in the Korea Strait
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The 2,000 m (6,600 ft) Ocean Cleanup system will be deployed off the coast of Tsushima island in the Korea Strait

A concept designed to rid the oceans of plastic waste is to become a reality next year. Boyan's Slat's Ocean Cleanup system is expected to be deployed in the second quarter of 2016 in the waters between Japan and South Korea. It will be the longest floating structure ever deployed in the ocean.

When Gizmag first featured the Ocean Cleanup project, it was yet to reach proof-of-concept stage. Since then, it has completed a positive feasibility study, crowdfunded a pilot phase to the tune of around US$2.1 million and been named a category winner in the 2015 Designs of the Year awards.

The premise of the idea is to employ long floating arms to collect pieces of plastic floating in the ocean. The system is passive in the sense that ocean currents are used to push plastic waste into the arms and toward a central point where it is collected. Marine-life is able to pass underneath the arms due to their floating on the surface of the water.

The system will be deployed off the coast of Tsushima island in the Korea Strait. Around 1 cu m (35 cu ft) of pollution per person is said to be washed up each year at Tsushima, prompting the Japanese government to seek innovative solutions to the problem.

The deployment will span 2,000 m (6,600 ft), which the Ocean Cleanup Project says will make it longer than the current longest floating structure to have ever been deployed in the ocean, the 1,000 m (3,300 ft) Tokyo Mega-Float. A number of deployments increasing in scale are planned over the next five years, leading, ultimately, to a 100-km-long (62-mi-long) system at the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, between Hawaii and California.

The video below is an artist's impression of what the Ocean Cleanup system will look like.

Source: The Ocean Cleanup

The Ocean Cleanup - The Artist's Impressions

6 comments
Billy Sharpstick
Great idea. What happens when a boat wants to get from here to there and the net is in the way?
Fretting Freddy the Ferret pressing the Fret
Time to clean up the oceans.
BobSilverman
BIG CONGRATULATIONS TO BOYAN SLAT! Proof that science and youthful energy can save our precious ecosystem.
Bruce H. Anderson
I like that the water is so nice and calm.
ezeflyer
Kudos to Boyan Slat. Along with methods to clean up plastic gyres, the definite solution is to stop spending taxpayer dollars to clean up plastic manufacturer's packaging. Instead of people using their free labor to recycle plastics, make plastic packaging manufacturers pay cradle to grave costs of recycling their plastics. This will encourage them to go to returnable bottles and biodegradable packaging. If we don't do this, plastic manufacturers will continue to produce greater quantities of plastics, knowing the public will bear the labor and recycling costs for their plastic garbage.
christopher
Hey - so long as there's some gullible politician giving away free tax dollars, there's always going to be some dreamer covering-up the swathe of holes in whatever scam/project idea they're using to extract those dollars with... Storms? Barnacles? Boats? Floating creatures? Sun? Hazardous/radioactive waste? Nets? Blockages? Birds? When the faded and shredded wreckage of this nutty idea resurfaces in a few years, I bet it's going to carry a headline about having created more rubbish than it removed.