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Main Deliverables of this Project

Design and build a drone that can be used for ocean waste collection.



The objective of this project is to design an aquatic drone that can collect floating trash from the surface of rivers, lakes, seas and oceans. The drone must be able to perform the following activities:

  • Collect floating trash from the surface of the water.
  • Crush or shred the collected trash and store it.
  • Bring it back to land where the trash can be safely disposed.

Why this is important

Plastic and trash that is dumped in our seas, oceans and on beaches has become a global crisis. Billions of pounds of plastic can be found in our oceans and make up about 40 percent of the world's ocean surfaces. There are 5 distinct trash patches all over world. The biggest of them is the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP). Located halfway between California Hawaii, it is estimated to have 1.8 trillion pieces of floating plastic and weighs over 80,000 tons. 

These plastics are not biodegradable and can stay up to 450 years as floating trash. They break down into microplastics due to sun's heat and wave movement and enter into the food chain of marine lifeforms. This is harmful for the marine ecosystem and eventually will affect human and animal life on land.


What this project needs to move forward

We need these skills to move this project forward:

  • Mechanical/Structural Engineers - To design and build the structure of the drone.
  • Mechatronics/Electronics Major - To design the circuitry for antennas, sensors and cameras.
  • Software and AI specialists - To design software that can drive the drone. 
  • Marine biology majors - To collaborate and study marine life.


Highlights of working on this project

  • Collaborate with talented people from different domains and areas of study and expertise
  • Build a strong team with people from diverse cultures and backgrounds
  • Learn project management, project reporting, delivery cycles
  • Work in a highly energized environment that focuses on high quality product development
  • Discover, learn, innovate, and invent new ways for preserving and growing marine life
  • Have fun in a super charged team of professionals students, collaborators, sponsors

For Contributors

  • Remuneration - This is a sponsored project. You will get paid for your contributions. Find out more from your project manager/project coordinator.
  • Learning - This project offers you opportunities to learn about this concept/topic/technology. You will get to collaborate and work with industry experts and professionals who will share their experiences and guide you along with their best practices.
  • Culture - Work with people from different backgrounds, cultures, nationalities and get exposure to working on cross-functional and virtual teams.
  • Get Your Hands Dirty - Roll up your sleeves and get practical on this project. Experience the joy of designing or building a machine/system/device that will be used by millions of people worldwide. If you are not co-located, video conference with your team and collaborate.
  • Build and Grow your Professional Network - Collaborate on this project, make friends, and grow your professional network.

For Sponsors

  • Top Talent - Work with talented people and find new recruits for your business as you see this project take shape.
  • Goodwill - Get positive goodwill for your brand as a sponsor who is building something innovating and contributing to the future.
  • Personal and Business Use - Use this system and technology for your home/boat/ship/company/organization
    Branding - Brand it with your organization identity.
  • Monetize - Invest in his project and take it to market with your brand identity

For Users

  • Get involved in the design phase and share your thoughts on how you would use this product or technology in your daily lives.
  • Give feedback at regular intervals and development stages to help this team to design and build a user-friendly system or technology.
  • Work with people from different countries, cultures, backgrounds and experiences. It's fun!


Get Recognition - Participate as an academician/student and contribute to research papers, college projects and participate in local, state, national, and international academic or technical conferences. Present papers on the innovations and advancements that have been made.