That Great Pacific Garbage Patch Cleaning Device Is Finally Working Properly - Physics-Astronomy.org

That Great Pacific Garbage Patch Cleaning Device Is Finally Working Properly

It's been six years since Boyan Slat began developing a system to rid the world's oceans of harmful plastic. In 2013, the entrepreneur founded The Ocean Cleanup, a nonprofit that aims to remove plastic from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a trash-filled vortex in the Pacific Ocean that's more than twice the size of Texas.




The group designed a device that passively collects plastic in its fold like a giant arm. But the system has hit several snags, including a design and manufacturing flaw that caused the plastic to spill back into the ocean. More recently, plastic began flowing over the top of a cork line that helps stabilise the system.
But on Wednesday, The Ocean Cleanup announced that it had fixed that problem and that the device is now capturing and retaining plastic debris in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
So far, the team has collected large fishing nets, plastic objects like cartons and crates, and microplastics as small as 1 millimetre in length, it said.
ocean cleanup sorting plastic
(The Ocean Cleanup)
The system's ability to trap microplastics came as a surprise, the organisation said in a press release. The Ocean Cleanup's previous research had suggested that microplastics rain down like ash toward the bottom of the ocean and so should be less likely to stay floating close to the surface.
Because of that, the organisation has focused on removing larger pieces of plastic from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
Laurent Lebreton, one of the organisation's researchers, previously told Business Insider that a lot of the debris the device was catching "is really weathered and broken down, and some of it looks really old."


He added: "We don't really find any plastic bags or straws, but we find really thick, hard plastic fragments."
The team has now demonstrated that the device can retain various types of plastic, thanks to a new parachute system that debuted in June.

The Ocean Cleanup built a giant arm that catches plastic

The Ocean Cleanup's U-shaped plastic-catching system is engineered to passively collect trash from the garbage patch using the ocean's current. It essentially creates a coastline in deep water.
The most visible portion of the device is a 2,000-foot (600 metre) pipe made of high-density polyethylene plastic. The pipe is connected to a screen that extends about 10 feet (3 metres) below the surface and is responsible for catching plastic debris.
In the first version of the device, the screen was attached to the bottom of the pipe like a skirt. But the team found that this configuration created too much stress at the point where the pipe and screen joined. In late 2018, a crack at the bottom of the pipe widened into a fracture, causing a 59-foot (18 metre) end section to detach from the array.
To address this issue, The Ocean Cleanup moved the screen in front of the pipe and connected it with slings. The team also installed a cork line (similar to the ones that separate the lanes of a swimming pool) behind the screen to keep it taut.
In June, The Ocean Cleanup launched a new version of the device, known as System 001/B. Once it was set up in the Pacific Garbage Patch, researchers did a series of tests.
They wanted to know whether the device had to travel at a consistent speed – either faster or slower than the plastic in the water. So they tried a parachute anchor that decelerated the system, and they experimented with turning the device in the opposite direction and attaching inflatable bags to tow it faster than the plastic.
The parachute anchor proved to be the "winning concept," Slat wrote on his blog.
But the new design still wasn't quite right: In August, the group's researchers found that plastic was spilling over the cork line, which sat about 10 centimeters (4 inches) above the water. So they built a much taller cork line to prevent this "overtopping."


The organisation said on Wednesday that there was only "minimal overtopping," a sign the tweak was successful.
"This now gives us sufficient confidence in the general concept," Slat said in a press conference.
ocean cleanup in action close up
(The Ocean Cleanup)

The organisation plans to build a fleet of plastic-cleaning arrays

Slat told Business Insider in September that he planned to build a larger version of the system next year that could capture more plastic, though his team was still trying to determine what the precise size should be.
For now, he said in the press conference, "there are still quite a few hurdles ahead of us before we are actually ready to scale."
One of those hurdles is demonstrating that the system can retain plastic for more than a year – something the existing model isn't designed to do. In particular, the organisation wants to make sure the device can hold up in harsh winter weather.
After that, Slat said, the organisation hopes to construct a fleet of these plastic-cleaning devices.
The group thinks a ship could visit the garbage patch every few months and tow the debris that the array catches to shore. But right now, The Ocean Cleanup's staff removes the plastic the device catches from the water by hand, using nets.


So to achieve its ultimate goal of capturing up to 15,000 tons of plastic per year, the organisation would have to consider more advanced ways to transfer plastic to a ship.
Once the system is scaled up, Slat said, he'll likely visit the Great Pacific Garbage Patch to observe it in action. For now, though, he stays on land, since he tends to get seasick.
"I'd like to go at some point, but only once the whole fleet is out there," he said. "I think it will be kind of epic to see."

3 comments:

  1. I am excited to share this testimony, I was 3 years ago diagnosed of fibroid and complicated Endometriosis. My medical condition was heart broken because it was causing my menstrual cramps,bloating before menstrual periods,lower abdominal pressure which result to heavy periods. I was subjected to different medications by my doctor for treatment . Despite my visit to several doctors my health wasn't getting better, all they could say was surgery. At the verge of giving up, I went to the internet to search for a treatment at least. But I found a cure instead. In the internet, I read a testimony of a lady who had Fibroid. She shared an e-mail address of the Doctor. Luckily everything seemed to be okay after I took the Herbal Medicine. I wish I could say that’s the end of it because I haven't had any symptoms since then. Do not expose yourself to more danger, use a herbal remedy that is safe and effective. if anyone here need help in curing his/her fibroid or trying to conceive should also contact him also have herbal medicine for HIV, Herpes, Cancer, Hepatitis etc and deal with spiritual problems too once again you can email him via email address drafridherbalhome@gmail.com. or call/whatsApp him on +2349057260738, you can still know more about him on his website:http://drafridherbalhome.webs.com  

    ReplyDelete

  2. Herbal Penis Enlargement product is 100% guarantee to Enlarge and get a better ERECTION ,
    the reason why most people are finding it difficult
    to enlarge Penis is because they believe on medical
    report, drugs and medical treatment which is not
    helpful for Penis Enlargement . Natural roots/herbs are the best remedy which can easily Enlarge your Penis permanently
    Contact Dr Aziba via Email : PRIESTAZIBASOLUTIONCENTER@GMAIL.COM or via WhatsApp : +2348100368288 for Natural root and herbal remedies put together to help you get Enlarge and Erect healthy.
    Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  3. My problem with small penis and quick ejaculation has caused me many traumas, especially in my sex life, i was heartbroken because i had very small penis, not nice to satisfy a woman, i had so many relationship called off because of my situation, i have used so many product which i found online but none could offer me the help i searched for. i saw some few comments about this specialist called Dr Joe.The solution came from the least expected place By reading in a forum specialized on penis enlargement, cure for STDs and erectile dysfunction by Dr Joe. Today My penis of 3 inches is now 8 inches and I can last as much as my wife needs. You can Email him via: herbalistjoeclinic@gmail.com, whatsapp: +2347031846539

    ReplyDelete

Powered by Blogger.