By Hannah McFadyen
This amazing little robot could be the solution to rubbish collecting in water.
It’s designed to capture rubbish and clean up rivers by making driving the robot into an online game.
Players from anywhere in the world will be able to control the little robot and drive it around the Chicago river.
With a Wi-Fi transmitter that allows the bot to be controlled remotely and on-board cameras (so the players can see where they’re going) players will be able to earn point by collecting pieces of rubbish.
Designed by Urban Rivers – a non-profit start up that looks to improve the water quality and bring back wildlife to city waterways.
But after setting up river-side floating gardens in the Chicago River they discovered that masses of rubbish would collect there, so they designed this unusual piece of technology to help with the clean-up whenever it was needed.
Nick Wesley, co-founder of the Chicago based start-up says the robot is set to be online by late May or early June.
The 27-year-old said: “After we set up the eco-park – what we found was that the river moves irregularly – it would fill up with trash but when we would go there the trash had moved on.
“We would have a lot of trash build up every single corner of the garden and we had to figure out how to clean this up.
“We needed someone or something there all the time and we decided to make it interactive – make it a game.
“We wanted to let anyone around the world take some time and take care of the trash.
“People want to contribute and help, but this is a way someone with just 5-10 minutes and get trash out of the river.
“We love playing with it – one time we were trying to get the bottle and it kept moving away – it was a as quite a tense moment and it’s a fun exercise.
“We look at the possibility and it goes beyond trash clean up, the tech exists where we can have something like this in the water 24/7.
“Beyond the cleaning trash we could have people monitoring wildlife and where surveys etc.
“So far it’s going pretty good, current problem is- getting it to react immediately, but so far we’re on schedule and we should have a prototype in late May/June that our kickstarters can use.”
You can find out more about Urban River at urbanriv.org and you can check out their kickstarter at https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1996859969/trash-cleaning-robot-controlled-by-you/description