An Australian invention, Seabin, which automatically scrubs floating rubbish from the ocean, already has pre-orders of 2,500 from around the world.
At around $5,000 each, that equates to $12.5 million before commercial sales begin. Each Seabin works independently, floating up and down with the tide, cleaning rubbish from the water 24 hours a day.
Water is sucked in from the surface, with a submersible water pump, and passes through a catch bag inside the Seabin. The water is then pushed back into the ocean leaving debris in the catch bag which has a 20 kg capacity.
The target market is marinas, ports yacht clubs, all enclosed ocean areas where Seabin can capture everything floating including oil, paper, plastics, and detergent. A microfibre filter is in development.
Seabin was founded by two Australian surfers, Andrew Turton and Pete Ceglinski, supported by a seed investment by Australian marine technology development company Shark Mitigation Systems, now renamed and an ASX-listed company, Smart Marine Systems.
Turton is an Australian boat builder and sailor who conceived the Seabin concept after numerous sailing trips around the world and witnessing the amount of pollution in marinas.
"The majority of my childhood was always in the water," he says. "There's nothing worse than being out there and being surrounded by plastic."
The Seabin collected an average if 1 kilogram of debris per hour when tested at Sydney's Darling Harbour last week.
Watch a mini Seabin in action at TEDxSydney:
Our mini Seabin is working overtime here at the @tedxsydney event! These plastic particles are a small amount of what the big Seabin pulled out of Sydney Harbour last week! 😜 . . #reuse #green #science #sustainability #ocean #water #environment #climatechange #recycle #plasticpollution #saveourocean #GlobalGoals #parisagreement #oceanplastic #microfiber #ocean #oceanconservation #marine #marine science #marineconservation #litter #innovate #technology #underwater #startup #startuplife #outdoors #outdoorlife #impact #startup #startuplife #goals #positivity #impact #nosingleuse
Ceglinski, now CEO of Seabin, is an industrial designer.
"I was a product designer in another life," he says.
"It was my job to make plastic products and after a while I realised we didn't need to stuff we were making and so I stopped. I met Andrew and he told me about this project and it just clicked.
"For me, the project was amazing. We could have a better time at the beach because we were not swimming in plastic and pollution anymore.
"The good thing about the location of the Seabin is that people can see what we're catching, what they are swimming in"
In January 2016, the pair raised US$267,567 in crowd funding to build prototypes. They are currently on version 5.
In its latest quarterly report to the ASX, Smart Marine Systems says the level of interest in Seabins from around the world continues to be strong.
"The March quarter saw the first official delivery and installation of commercial Seabins in Europe," says the company.
Smart Marine Systems says it is currently building the manufacturing and distribution capacity to cater for the significant demand and orders received from a brief pre-sales campaign which resulted in more than 2,500 commitments.
The Seabin, which is fixed to a stable point such as a jetty, has a capacity to automatically scoop up half a tonne of debris a year, including 90,00 plastic bags, using just $1 a day in electricity to power to suction pump.
Here's what you'll find inside the design of a Seabin:
This article was originally published by Business Insider.
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