The floating bins are connected via pipes to a shore-based water pump that pulls water through the bin. Water flows through the container, where a natural fiber bag is used to collect the debris that is present in the water. After the waste is filtered out, the water flows through the pump system where it can be cleaned even further using a water/oil separator. After processing, the water then is pumped back into the ocean. The Seabin works 24/7, collecting debris in the bag and holding it near the bin when it is full. It is sized so one operator can scoop the floating debris and change the bag without assistance.
Seabin hopes its technology will supplant existing trash collection methods that use individual workers who manually remove waste from corners, and trash boats that use nets to scoop up debris as they trawl a harbor. Though both methods are helpful, they are not as efficient as the autonomous Seabin. Trash boats are expensive to operate, and individual workers have not been able to keep up with the volume of garbage.
Seabin has a working prototype and has turned to Indiegogo to raise funds that’ll allow the team to begin production. If they raise the required $230,000, Seabin hopes to begin production in early 2016 with a delivery date of November 2016.