Eco-yacht fueled by ocean debris

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At the Southampton Boat Showin Southampton, England, aproject of an eco-yacht that is capable of collecting five tons of plastic in the ocean every day and then recycling this garbage into fuel was unveiled. The figure, though, is approximate and depends on the area of the world's oceans where the eco-yacht will operate and on the volume of its collector. All these parameters are still at calculation stage.

What is known is that the Ocean Saviour, a 70-metre catamaran, will be equipped with two «arms» on either side of the hull that will rake up the ocean debris and send it to a conveyor belt in the bow. The debris will then be shredded and disposed of in a plasma gasifier. The product that will result from the disposal will be used as fuel for the catamaran.

Ocean Saviour has two 12 metre containers on the main deck that can be used to house a research laboratory or VIP cabins. On the aft main deck, behind the crew quarters, is a storage area. The helipad is located on the third deck.

The task of Ocean Saviour is to remove plastic debris from the ocean before it is broken down into microparticles.

Ocean Saviour was conceived by two colleagues from the brokerage firm TheYachtMarket, Richard Roberts andSimon White. They have called in naval architect Ricky Smith, who specialises in sustainable motoring, and design expert Dr Andrew Baglin to visualise their idea.

The authors of the project hope to launch the first Ocean Saviour in the Pacific Ocean. Richard Roberts calls the vessel «an ocean harvester» and believes its launch will bring «an environmental revolution». He stresses, however, that the project «is massive and will require investment on many levels».

The cost of the project is estimated at £40 million ($52 million).

To date, more than five trillion pieces of plastic pollute the world's oceans. And, at last count, eight million tonnes of plastic trash ends up in the ocean every year.

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