Aquatic Garbage Drones Could Help Clean Up Our Oceans

By David Wharton | 8 years ago

When you hear the word “drone” these days, it’s usually in a sentence that also includes the words “terrorist” or “suspect.” But drones don’t have to be limited to spying or raining hellfire down on Al Qaeda members. Instead of being used in combat, one new drone design would instead combat pollution in the oceans.

Let’s just hope they don’t become self-aware.

Designed by Elie Ahovi and his classmates from the French International School of Design, the Marine Drone concept would serve as a sort of Roomba for the seas, autonomously patrolling the waters and sucking up bits of plastic and other ocean-born garbage. According to EarthTechling, the drone would be powered by water-proof batteries, and once its storage compartment was at capacity, the drone would automatically return to its mother ship for garbage disposal. If mass produced and put to work, Ahovi and his team hope that the drones could help cut down on the frightening level of pollution choking out oceans.

“But wait!” I head you say. “What about all the poor little fishies that are just swimming along minding their own business? They could get sucked up!” Well, I’d first point up that the poor little fishies are in constant danger of being eaten by bigger fishies so that might be a step up. Nevertheless, the designers have already considered that question. The Marine Drone would emit a constant signal designed to repel fish and other aquatic creatures.

It all sounds great, so long as you ignore the possibility that the drones will eventually get sick of sucking up our cast-offs, unite, and begin to terrorize the high seas like swarms of mechanical piranha. Did I say “possibility?” I meant “inevitability.” We’re boned. Well, screw you, angry hypothetical garbage drones! You’re not even as cute as WALL-E so you can suck it!

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