Skip to main content

Plastic-eating ‘shark’ lends bite to clean-up operations

The Netherlands – ‘Waste Shark’ is the name given to an autonomous water drone which is currently cleaning the waters in the Port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands. Four of these ‘sharks’ will be on patrol for a six-month test period under a contract with the port authority.

A RanMarine company concept, the solar-powered drone’s open mouth 35 cm below the surface of the water can collect 0.5 tonnes of material before it is full.

Owing to its location at the mouth of several major rivers, Rotterdam is one of the largest ports in Europe and attracts high volumes of marine waste. In addition to the Waste Shark, the Port of Rotterdam Authority is also testing a drone called AquaSmartXL which can monitor the area by camera. Both drones are seen as particularly useful tools for areas which are difficult for manned vessels to reach, such as under bridges or around jetties.

The Waste Shark can operate around the clock, taking environmental measurements and learning more efficient routes over time. As with the Ocean Cleanup prototype developed by Dutch inventor Boyan Slat, the idea was inspired by a desire to tackle the ever-growing problem of marine plastic debris. If the drones prove to be a success and can be made at a reasonable cost, they could ‘potentially be deployed by the thousands in coastal areas around the world’ , it is reasoned.

As demonstrated by a water-powered collection wheel in Baltimore, USA, the best place to start tackling marine plastic waste is at its source in harbours and canals.

Would you like to share any interesting developments or article ideas with us? Don't hesitate to contact us.

You might find this interesting too

What can ocean clean-up projects really accomplish?
Recofloor opens for business again

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Subscribe now and get a full year for just €136 (normal rate is €170) Subscribe
Share your shear stories and win a GoPro!

It’s safe to say that scrap shears are the pillars of the recycling industry. But which configurations are the future? Take part in our tech survey and get a shot at winning a cool GoPro camera!

Thousands of scrap shears are driving recycling businesses all over the world. When it comes to different types, an operator may opt for maximum tonnage or flexibility, such as a mobile set-up. An integrated baling system is also gaining popularity. Ultimately, there is no wrong or right shear; it comes down to how you’re going to use it.

Our survey is meant to map the wants and needs of today’s dynamic recycling industry. Voice your opinion here and, who knows, you may be able to capture your recycling facility in action in HD.