Nurdle launches prototype two of one of the worlds first microplastic removal devices!
It feels like a lifetime ago that I was sat scribbling drawings of how I envisioned prototype two of our nurdle/microplastic removal device, in fact, it’s been 9 months. Prototype one was everything I expected it to be – it proved that we can remove and sort microplastics en masse from the environment. But, it was definitely a prototype. Here is a quick brain dump of the positives and negatives of the device…
1. We collected far more plastic than I ever dreamed of. The machine was incredibly powerful and removed a lot of plastic quickly. This was fantastic.
2. We collected much smaller plastic than I anticipated. The separation aspect of the design allowed us to collect plastic smaller than 1mm, under the right conditions.
- The plastic separation device, although good in some aspects, could not keep up with the sheer volume of plastic, sticks and sand we were trying to put through it.
- The electrics of the device were a constant headache, the machine could only do 4hours of work.
- It was loud, like really loud.
But… All in all, it proved it could be done. What I had proved was that we could build a device that could start remediating beaches of this notorious problem.
The universe presented me with two fantastic geniuses who helped me work on my original design and optimise it. Eliminating the negatives and also, optimising some aspects of the machine to improve its efficacy. These geniuses are called Howard and Frank, a couple of older engineers (they won’t like me saying that haha!). Frank is an engineer and Howard, a metal worker/engineer in his own right.
We scribbled down a drawing, together with my good friend Elliot and the plans were set. That day, I had committed in my brain that I was going for it. And that I did.
Elliot and I then presented our plans to more geniuses (the worlds full of them, finding them is hard!) at KarcherUK, where we spoke through our plans for prototype two with our new sponsors for 2021. There were still questions surrounding the electrical components to the device, and almost instantly Jez (one of the engineers at Karcher) solved the questions. Sometimes no matter how good you are at Google, it’s best to just speak to an expert hahaha! They agreed with our plans for the device, which was super refreshing to have high calibre engineers believe in your plans, and KarcherUK very kindly offered to help us with the device.
I took the skeleton up to them to complete the electrical components on June 16th. Within two weeks the device went from skeleton to having its internal organs put in. Jez, John, Jamie and the engineers at Karcher solved the electrical biggest headache of mine – I’m incredibly grateful.
I took the device back to Howard and since that date, we have worked tirelessly to complete all of the other aspects of the machine. As I write this, we’re nearing completion.
The separation aspect of the device is working phenomenally, far better than the last device.
It’s far superior at segregating micro-plastics from organics too!
It’s quieter, much quieter, now sounding like a garden lawnmower.
The vacuum is stronger but uses less fuel.
The separation can now be customisable, allowing us to collect even smaller plastic than previously; all the way down to the size of a single grain of sand.
Although the capacity for the device is smaller (the last one had a 600L capacity, this one 375L) it now fits in line with health and safety protocol, takes seconds to unload, and thus allows us to work longer, faster and collect more – safely.
All in all the second prototype of our microplastic removal machine has exceeded my expectations yet again, I couldn’t be more ecstatic at the prospect of getting this down to the beach. In 9 days we have the ultimate trial for this device, the worst place I have seen for nurdles. Wish us luck! More news to follow…