Sunday, April 14, 2024

Solar-powered BeBot is designed to keep beaches clean

After TechTics’ AI-enabled beach-cleaning robot, another ocean protection company came up with a garbage collection robot that cleans plastic debris after humans on the shores of the oceans and seas.

4Ocean has partnered with Poralu Marine, a global leader in marine-grade technologies, to launch an impressive beach cleaning robot designed to recover coastal plastic debris. Called BeBot, the solar-powered robot is specifically designed to help clean up smaller plastic waste.

The robot, according to the company and experts, is needed because the shores are currently so polluted that it would be almost impossible to clean it with human work alone. In addition to the larger pieces of trash like plastic water bottles or food packaging, there is a lot of small waste that is hard for humans to notice – such as smaller packages, cigarette butts, or microplastics.

Solar-powered BeBot is designed to keep beaches clean.
The robot is remotely operated. Credit: 4Ocean

The electric-powered BeBot can clean up to 3,000 sqm of beach per hour, 20-30 times more efficient than collecting trash on the beach by hand. Agile and easy to maneuver, the robot specifically excels at removing small pieces of plastic and other trash that are notoriously difficult to clean by hand, using small 1 cm x 1 cm sifting grids to separate these items from the sand.

The BeBot’s smaller footprint and more shallow cleaning depth of 10 cm effectively remove common beach trash while avoiding disruptions to any nearby habitats or animals, providing a more effective and sustainable approach to cleanups. The robot is remotely operated, can be used daily, and controlled by an operator up to approximately 950 feet away. It runs on batteries connected to a solar panel, is quieter and much smaller, so it’s less likely to disturb wildlife or beachgoers.

After the machine is full, someone needs to sort through the contents to separate recyclable plastic and trash from materials that can return to the sand.

The robot is an impressive addition to 4Ocean’s goal of eliminating 20 million pounds of waste by the end of 2021. For many years the main focus of the company has been to create an economy around cleaning from the ocean, prioritizing plastic consumption.