advertisement

Follow Mint Lounge

Latest Issue

Home > Smart Living> Innovation > Meet Jellyfishbot, the robot that likes to eat sea trash

Meet Jellyfishbot, the robot that likes to eat sea trash

About the size of a suitcase, this remote-controlled robot boat sucks trash into a net that it trails behind its twin hulls

The Jellyfish, a little catamaran operated by remote control, which is capable to clean water by collecting rubbish on the water's surface is seen at work in the port of Cassis, southern France, July 5, 2021. (REUTERS)

Tourists visiting the picturesque port at Cassis, southern France, often see an unedifying sight: plastic bags, discarded drinks bottles, and even used surgical masks, floating in the water among the boats in the marina.

But the port has found a solution, in the shape of a bright yellow remote-controlled electric powered boat that weaves around the harbour sucking the trash into a net that it trails behind its twin hulls.

Also read: How a drone army is rising to tackle ocean plastics

The boat, called Jellyfishbot, is about the size of a suitcase and so can get into the corners and narrow spaces where rubbish tends to accumulate but which are difficult for cleaners with nets to reach.

"It can go everywhere," said Nicolas Carlesi, who has a PhD in undersea robotics and whose company, IADYS, created the boat.

It is not the only device of its kind. San Diego non-profit Clear Blue Sea is developing a proto-type trash-collecting robot called "FRED". A marine technology firm based in the Netherlands, RanMarine, has developed a robot called the "Waste Shark" which has been deployed to clean up garbage in Rotterdam harbour.

The Jellyfish, a little catamaran operated by remote control, which is capable to clean water by collecting rubbish on the water's surface is seen at work in the port of Cassis, southern France, July 5, 2021.
The Jellyfish, a little catamaran operated by remote control, which is capable to clean water by collecting rubbish on the water's surface is seen at work in the port of Cassis, southern France, July 5, 2021. (REUTERS)

"Jellyfishbot" is in operation in around 15 French ports, and has been exported to countries including Singapore, Japan and Norway, according to Carlesi's company. The firm has just launched an autonomous version.

According to the official IADYS website, the robot has a range of around 400 metres or 1,300 feet under radio-controlled guidance. It can also capture oil spills and used in other locations such as lakes, canals and industrial facilities. Apart from being lightweight and running on silent and green energy, the Jellyfishbot can also withstand adverse weather conditions.

A keen sailor and diver, Carlesi said he came up with the idea after noticing, whenever he spent leisure time on the water, how much rubbish bobbed in the water in ports.

"I thought: 'Why not try to make this difficult and sometimes thankless task of picking up trash easier?' So we made this robot," he said.

(Writing by Noemie Olive and Christian Lowe; editing by Philippa Fletcher for Reuters)

Also read: Manta, the ocean cleanup yacht that can feed on plastic trash and convert it into fuel

Next Story