Currently, microplastics are a major source of pollution in our water, and this pollution has been shown to have the potential to cause great ecological harm. This is a major ethical/societal issue. Additionally, the exact location of large concentrations of microplastics is also unknown, making cleanup difficult. Despite this, there are currently no effective means for detecting and collecting microplastics. To that end, our team is developing two major systems– a filtration pod that can detect and collect microplastics, and a submersible water borne vehicle to maneuver that filtration pod through a body of water. Currently, our filtration pod is intended to collect plastics of a size between 30 and 100 microns– this range was chosen to cover a relatively broad spectrum of microplastics, while avoiding damaging clogging issues in our pod.

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