HOW DO WE DO IT?
INFOGRAPHIC - Though not the actual layout of the machinery, this diagram makes it easy to understand the three stages of filtration employed by a SeaVax ocean dustcart.
The question we are most often asked is how is it possible to filter plastic particles from seawater without harming marine life?
It's a difficult one, even for our engineers. As you can see from the diagram above, SeaVax uses three physical stages of filtration to remove plastic. Each stage is designed to enhance collection and filtration of the next stage. In practice the first two stages are relatively simple and the third stage is where the clever stuff is:
1. The first stage in a much like other skimmers, where single use bottles, bags and other larger plastic flotsam, including fishing nets and rope, is fed into a hopper and granulated by a shredder, then fed into a giant holding tank, until the waste can be offloaded to a converted cargo ship while at sea (when fully developed).
2. The second stage is slightly more complicated where a mesh is variable in size and may be increased or decreased in net size to deal with what is ahead of the craft, to ensure that smaller marine life (shrimps, krill) does not pass through to the final stage and clog up the works. Shrimp and krill are directed back into the sea while inorganic waste is collected and once again fed into the holding tank.
3. The third stage is where we need to be smarter, involving advanced robotics and programming, akin to object recognition, allied to arrays of sensors that generate digital limits to ensure that only plastic is collected - while marine biota is safeguarded. There is no mesh or net at this stage, simply spinning water and variable taps. But even then there is more. Without automation, we would not be able to select the right filters at the right time.
No system can be 100% effective. For that reason SeaVax may shut down in extraordinary conditions, until fishing for plastic may safely resume.
LINKS & REFERENCE
MARINE LIFE - This humpback whale is one example of a magnificent animal that is at the mercy of human activity. Humans are for the most part unaware of the harm their fast-lane lifestyles are causing. We aim to change that by doing all we can to promote ocean literacy.
This website is provided on a free basis as a public information service. Copyright © Cleaner Oceans Foundation Ltd (COFL) (Company No: 4674774) 2018. Solar Studios, BN271RF, United Kingdom. COFL is a charity without share capital. The names Amphimax™ RiverVax™ and SeaVax™ are trademarks.