published on 30 October 2019 in water
Interceptor will free rivers from plastic
Most plastic arrives in seas and oceans from rivers, which transport this waste from the land to the sea. Starting from this premise, Ocean Cleanup, the Dutch NGO founded by Boyan Slat that is already involved in cleaning up the plastic in the oceans, has created Interceptor, precisely with the aim of solving the problem at its origin.
The system, presented to the public on 26 October, is able to collect an average of 50 thousand kilogrammes of waste a day, but can arrive at 100 thousand kilogrammes in optimum conditions. The waste capture mechanism is simple: Interceptor is anchored to the bed of the river and, like its ocean counterpart, it makes use of the natural flow of the watercourse to intercept the plastic with its floating barrier and channel it towards the conveyor belt inside it. Here the waste is automatically distributed into six skips which, thanks to sensors, are filled evenly until they reach full capacity. Interceptor can store up to 50 m³ of waste before needing to be emptied. The system is designed to operate autonomously since it is fully powered by solar energy. To date, four Interceptors have been built, two of which are already operating with good results in Indonesia and Malaysia. A third is due to be installed shortly in the Mekong Delta, in Vietnam, while the fourth will clean up the river waters in Santo Domingo, the capital of the Dominican Republic. The next countries that could equip themselves with an Interceptor, says Ocean Cleanup, are Thailand and the United States.