Back in May 2019 the Ocean Cleanup project shared several modifications and system upgrades aimed at further rectifying some of the issues that have been identified since the launch of System 001 in September last year. These modifications will now be put to the test as they have System 001/B have now been deployed for testing.
The issues identified primarily related to the system not being able to keep a steady pace, this caused already captured plastic to sometimes exit the system. The modifications have therefore primarily been aimed at ensuring a more consistent pace, but through changes that speed up and slow down the system. They have identified 6 approaches to stabilize the speed and ensure that plastic always enters the system from the correct side.
The launch was done at a newly rented industrial area in Alameda, CA, formerly a pulp factory. As part of the project the team transformed this area into a fully operational assembly yard from where they could launch their newly upgraded system.
The new system is smaller and more modular, as the aim is to reduce the turn around time from identifying issues to solving them. Therefore the timeline for the new test is only 2 months, during which the system can be reconfigured off-shore to minimize the logistic of towing the system to and from port.