We tend to only hear about drones when one has taken out a target of some sort, so hopefully we'll be hearing more about this concept underwater drone whose target is ocean garbage. Its mission is to seek out and collect the copious amounts of trash — plastic and otherwise — that causes a threat to the ocean environment.
The proposed Marine Drone would autonomously crisscross the ocean powered by waterproof batteries and a silent electric motor. One end is wide open and the other is an enclosed net that would trap all the garbage in its path. Fish and other underwater inhabitants are discouraged from entering the nets by a sonic emitter transmitting an unpleasant noise.
Once the drone is full of trash, it would meet up with a floating dock or "mothership," where crews would haul up the garbage for proper disposal.
The Marine Drone concept comes from Elie Ahovi and his working team at the French International School of Design. Ahovi was inspired to create a drone with a positive mission when he saw images of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. His hope is that his drone could begin to tackle this obvious display of waste in our oceans and other underwater regions around the globe.
While we still haven't tackled the best way to dispose of all our garbage, it's innovative ideas like these that will at least keep the world's trash in check in delicate ecosystems.
Hopefully this is one drone that we will be hearing about regularly in the future!