A new vessel and technology designed to tidy marine waste has been launched for testing from Turnchapel Wharf, Plymouth on the Cattewater.

The Waste Sharks are state-of-the-art Remote Operated Vehicles (ROVs) that survey the surface of our seas, gobbling up litter, helping to keep our natural environment clean.

They have been introduced as part of our Preventing Plastic Pollution project and are being trialled first at our neighbours, Turnchapel Wharf. Once initial trials are completed the Waste Sharks will begin operating in the wider Cattewater where litter is known to gather. 

Working in collaboration with Plymouth-based robotics and artificial intelligence expertise MSUBS and Marine AI, the project will look at adapting and enhancing the technology of the basic Waste Sharks to work autonomously moving around the water to where the plastic waste is collecting.

The University of Plymouth will bring their marine plastic pollution expertise to this project and will be helping to collect and analyse the waste consumed by Waste Sharks.

Turnchapel Wharf and the Cattewater Harbour Commissioners have kindly agreed to trial the project in their waters and are keen to work with us on the education and awareness programme involving local schools and communities.

Ideas for engagement include naming and painting competitions to helping with programming and trialling the sharks in the water using the new automation ROV technology.

Babcock has also purchased a Wasteshark which will be helping to collect plastic waste from waters around the dockyard, helping cut plastic pollution within the city.  Babcock is an active member of the Britain’s Ocean City, Plastic Task Force.

All partners involved in the various Waste Shark projects are actively working  together to share knowledge,  experience and expertise to help cut plastic pollution and positively contribute to the Climate Emergency Action Plan for Plymouth.

MAS At TCW Aerial

Turnchapel Wharf

Owned and operated by Yacht Havens, Turnchapel Wharf is a 14 acre waterfront Business Park in Plymouth, Devon. Home to a growing number of local, national and international marine businesses. Turnchapel Wharf has also become known as the UK's centre for testing autonomous vessels. Vessels and technology developed by Thales, MSubs, Marine AI, IBM, Southampton University and various other companies have all been trialled and tested at Turnchapel Wharf, making use of the waterfront location and range of marine facilities on-site.

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