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Project to Clean Up the Ocean's Garbage Patch Isn't Working
On Saturday, December 29th, during a regular inspection of the cleanup system, our offshore crew discovered that an 18-meter end-section had detached from the rest of the system. Although it is too early to confirm the cause of the malfunction, we hypothesize that material fatigue (caused by about 106 load cycles), combined with a local stress concentration, caused a fracture in the HDPE floater.

We are, of course, quite bummed about this as 1) we hoped to stay out for a bit longer to collect more data on plastic-system interaction, and 2) it introduces an additional challenge to be solved. At the same time, we also realize that setbacks like this are inevitable when pioneering new technology at a rapid pace.

 
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Chelan County PUD Combats Eurasian Milfoil - Every summer, two Chelan County PUD park maintenance workers use an Aquarius Systems weed harvester to cut and remove tons of Eurasian milfoil from parks and boat launches along the Columbia River. Without the PUD’s harvesting program, boat launches and swimming areas would be choked with weeds. This HM-420 harvester was built more than 15 years ago. It still looks great.


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