There is a common tendency to believe that big problems require heavy and complicated solutions.
What if … many simple, smart and easy to implement solutions were to make a great difference and work at exponential changes. Seabin is surely one of them.
The trash and plastics contaminating the oceans mostly comes from human activities along the shoreline. To tackle the problem at these entry points, two Australians invented something similar to an automated pool cleaner – but for marinas, harbours, ports and even inland waters like rivers and lakes — that sucks up garbage, while filtering out the water. They’re calling it the Seabin, and it recently was successfully crowdfunded on Indiegogo.
Inventors and surfers Andrew Turton and Pete Ceglinski both spent their younger years around the water, and were compelled to quit their jobs to design a solution they believe will help address the urgent problem of plastic pollution. The Seabin is designed as an 24/7 alternative to more costly alternatives like dedicated trash boats or humans trawling harbours for garbage. It’s also small and unobtrusive enough that it can be placed in “problem areas”.
More efficient than a worker walking around with a scoop net in marinas, ports and yacht clubs seabins can be located in the most strategic places and mother nature winds and currents will bring them the rubbish. Sure it might not allow to catch everything right now but it’s a really positive start.
How does the SEABIN work?
We start close to the source of the problem in a controlled environment.
The marinas, ports and yacht clubs are the perfect place to start helping clean our oceans. There are no huge open ocean swells or storms inside the marinas, its a relatively controlled environment. The wind and currents are constantly moving the floating debris around in our oceans and in every port, marina or yacht club there is always some pollution heavy areas based on the predominant wind and current directions.
Seabin is situated at the waters surface and is plumbed into a shore based water pump on the dock. The water gets sucked into the Seabin bringing all floating debris and floating liquids into the Seabin. We catch all the floating debris inside the Seabin and the water then flows out through the bottom of the bin and up into the pump on the dock.
The water then flows through the pump where we have the option of installing an oil/water separator and clean water then flows back into the ocean. This process is constant, operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
Inside the Seabin we have a natural fiber “catch bag” which collects all the floating debris. When this is full or near to full, the marina worker simply changes the catch bag with another one. The collected debris is then disposed of responsibly, the catch bag cleaned and now it is ready to swap again for the full one in the still operating Seabin.
We have designed the size of the Seabin and catch bag for safe working load for one person to safely change the catch bag.
If the Seabin is full it still works. The flow of the water simply pulls all the surrounding floating debris against the Seabin and keeps it there. The marina worker would simply scoop up the surrounding debris and then change the catch bag as normal.