Experts from The Ocean Cleanup will launch a 100 meter-long prototype floating barrier that will collect floating trash in the North Sea.
In an effort to clean the world’s oceans in a simple and efficient way, the prototype will become the first ocean cleanup system ever tested at sea.
The Dutch government and world-renowned dredging and marine contractor Royal Boskalis Westminster N.V., were the two of The Ocean Cleanup main partners represented the unveiling.
The prototype will deploy in the Pacific Ocean and cut the size of the notorious Great Pacific Garbage Patch in half in the next 10 years. The floating barrier was designed no to interfere with wildlife and can last through extreme weather conditions.
The reports said that the 100 meter-long barrier segment to be deployed in the north Sea will help validate the survivability of the system. Sensors will track its movement and the data gathered will enable engineers to develop a system fully resistant to severe conditions of the cleanup.
Collecting plastic is not its objective during the prototype test, as it will act as an artificial coastline, passively catching and concentrating ocean debris.
The system is powered by the ocean’s natural currents that’s why testing the barriers is important because of its crucial role in the cleanup concept.
“This is a historic day on the path toward clean oceans. A successful outcome of this test should put us on track to deploy the first operational pilot system in late 2017.” said Boyan Slat, CEO and founder of The Ocean Cleanup.
“I estimate there is a 30% chance the system will break, but either way it will be a good test.” Slat added
Peter Berdowski, CEO of Boskalis, said: “It has been inspiring to work with The Ocean Cleanup. Now that everything is ready, we are looking forward to the really exciting next step, with the transportation and installation of the barrier. I wish Boyan and his team success with their journey towards a plastics-free ocean.”