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Ocean Cleanup readies for Interceptor production

The Ocean Cleanup and Konecranes have chosen MHE-Demag to design, manufacture and service the Ocean Cleanup’s Interceptor to extract plastic from rivers before entering the ocean.

According to The Ocean Cleanup, this is an important step as the non-profit organization prepares to tackle the world’s 1000 most polluting rivers.

Deploying Interceptors on a large scale is necessary to rapidly address the urgent problem of ocean plastic pollution. MHE-Demag is part of Konecranes a world-leading group of Lifting Businesses.

Laying the groundwork for global scaleup, Interceptors 005 and 006 are currently being manufactured simultaneously at MHE-Demag’s facility in Klang, Malaysia and are expected to be completed in May 2021. MHE-Demag will also handle Interceptor manufacturing, installation, and maintenance; local partners will oversee operations, and The Ocean Cleanup will continue to act as the technology and best practices provider as well as lead business development for upcoming Interceptor projects.

Founder and CEO of The Ocean Cleanup, Boyan Slat explained that at the end of a very challenging year, the commencement of series production for the Interceptor was a necessary step to tackle the global flow of plastic pollution to our oceans at scale.

“I believe Konecranes is well-suited for the job and I look forward to seeing them build many more Interceptors in the coming years. I am thankful for their commitment to clean oceans.”

Industrial Cranes and Products, Asia Pacific senior vice president, Karl Tilkorn, said Konecranes abilities to design and manufacture engineered or customised solutions have seen them successfully undertake many landmark projects in the region.

“We are proud to collaborate with The Ocean Cleanup on the design and manufacturing of the Interceptor, in order to help the good cause of addressing river pollution across the globe.”

Through Konecranes global footprint, helped by the design and manufacturing strengths of MHE-Demag, Konecranes can service and maintain Interceptors throughout their lifetime.

The Ocean Cleanup’s Interceptor was unveiled in late 2019 and there are currently three deployed in Klang, Malaysia; Jakarta, Indonesia; and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. A fourth Interceptor, in Vietnam, has been delayed for deployment and is expected to be launched early in 2021.

Over the last year and a half, The Ocean Cleanup has used the insights from these pilot systems to understand and further develop the technology for more efficient mass production. These upgrades include changes to the conveyor, shuttle, dumpsters, and barge. Working together with MHE-Demag, these changes have been incorporated into the 3rd generation design, which is the blueprint for the Interceptors being manufactured in 2020 and 2021.