Updates

Research, Oceanography

Investigating Plastic Detection from Space

After almost 3 years of work, The Ocean Cleanup research team has recently submitted its comprehensive results about plastic pollution in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. More than 1.2 million pieces of plastic have been collected, counted, sorted, characterised and categorised. Terabytes of aerial images and data have been...

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Team, Research

Dr. Richard Spinrad Joins The Ocean Cleanup’s Scientific Advisory Board

The Ocean Cleanup is honored to welcome former NOAA Chief Scientist Dr. Richard (Rick) Spinrad as the newest member of our Scientific Advisory Board (SAB). In his advisory role, Dr. Spinrad will focus on challenging our work and designs based on his extensive experience in oceanography and the maritime technology field. His role will...

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Research

Quantifying global plastic inputs from rivers into oceans

Quantifying plastic pollution in the world’s ocean requires a good understanding of sources. It is commonly accepted that most plastic found in or near the marine environment is coming from land-based sources. Rivers particularly may play an important role in transporting mismanaged plastic waste from land into the ocean. Our...

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Research

Understanding the rising speed of plastic

The Ocean Cleanup Research Team continues to analyze data from our expeditions, including our Mega Expedition which provided us with the largest sample of ocean plastic ever collected (1.1 million particles weighing approximately one ton). One of the many experiments conducted was measuring the rising speed of plastic...

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Oceanography, Research

Ocean Plastic Mostly Near Surface, Study Shows

It is a commonly held belief that plastic pollution is spread from ocean surface to seabed. Our newest study, published today in Nature Scientific Reports, shows that at least for buoyant plastic bigger than a sand grain (0.5mm), this is not the case, primarily residing on or near the surface. It also reveals that conventional methods to...

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Research

Announcing the Aerial Expedition

We are proud to announce The Ocean Cleanup’s next major research mission: the Aerial Expedition. In September and October 2016, we will conduct a series of low-speed, low-altitude flights across the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in a C-130 Hercules aircraft, using expert spotters and state-of-the-art sensors. Our aim is to accurately...

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Research, Engineering

Engineering An Ocean Cleanup Barrier From Scratch

How we design a system that does not ‘fight the ocean’, but rather ‘moves with it’?

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Research

A deep dive into plastic flow modeling

One of the main issues we are tackling at The Ocean Cleanup is to determine where, and in what concentrations, plastic pollution is distributed throughout the oceans. In order to clean up the worlds’ ocean garbage patches effectively, we need to get a crystal clear picture of where we should start. To achieve this, we are building...

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Research, Testing, Engineering

First Cleanup Barrier Test to be deployed in Dutch waters

The Ocean Cleanup will be deploying a 100 meter-long barrier segment in the second quarter of 2016 in the North Sea, 23 km off the coast of The Netherlands. It will be the first time our barrier design will be put to the test in open waters. The main objective of the North Sea test is to monitor the effects of real-life sea conditions,...

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Research, Oceanography

Research vessel "Ocean Starr" kicks off Mega Expedition

Today the 171 ft research vessel ‘’Ocean Starr’’ departed from San Francisco, marking the official start of the Mega Expedition. This will be the largest research expedition in history, in which around 30 vessels will cross the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in parallel, covering 3,500,000 km2 and collecting more...

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