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Let's Clean Up the Great Pacific Ocean Garbage Patch

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Design a drone boat to clean up the Great Pacific Ocean Garbage Patch.

This is the problem: Ocean_Pollution_-_Great_Pacific_Garbage_Patch


Let's figure out a way to fix it.

Project goals[edit]

Clean up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. [Suggested project] Do no harm.


Drone boat.


None -- let's do this entirely on volunteer labor and donated materials.


This is a real problem that threatens wildlife and human health around the world. I propose a drone boat made out of biodegradeable materials to sail out using sail, solar, or water power and pick up the big stuff while filtering out the small stuff. It must not cause any harm if it sinks or ends up beached somewhere or accidentally rams another boat Perhaps we should use many small boats. I am thinking it could be capable of submerging itself a few meters to ride out ocean storms. We will probably need to borrow a communications satellite and get permission to use it -- I understand there are still analog tv satellites up there not doing much. We need to avoid being hacked/hijacked by somebody who says "Hey, that's a useful boat, Gimme!." We need to be sure that if control is stolen from us then this thing can't do much harm. We want "hang time" so that this thing can stay out there doing its job for as long as possible so we want a way that the collected plastic and junk can be returned to a recycling plant without the boat having to go with it. Perhaps the boat could fabricate some sort of a seaworthy structure out of the plastic (melt and reform it?) and attach some sort of propulsion device and guidance to sail it back to land, or perhaps just attach a pick up hook and a plane can come along and hook it out of the ocean. A quirky idea I have is to have it steered/controlled by a majority vote of internet participants (real time average of joystick inputs or something) so that no one person can sail it off task and control can migrate around the world 24/7 as people have time and are awake. Of course we will need a chat room and discussion page to coordinate control and decide what the plan is.

Next steps[edit]

Lots of discussion. We need to do back of the envelope calculations to study possible designs and do feasibility studies. We also need to figure out the legal angles so we don't run afoul of any laws. Anybody know anything about international law, law of the sea, etc?


This is early stuff, no conclusions yet.

Contact details[edit]

No contact details. This project is community property now.