Life Below Water

Irish Teenager Invents New Microplastic Trap!

Image © Google Science Fair

The invention can remove up to 90% of microplastics from water!

Fionn Ferreira, 18, has been presented with a $50,000 Google Science award for his microplastic removal solution that could cheaply and efficiently clean most microplastics from the ocean.

He invented a magnetic liquid that attracts microplastics, separating them from the water.  Fionn used recycled vegetable oils and magnetite powder to replicate ‘ferrofluid’, a technique used by NASA in 1963 to keep rocket fuel moving in zero gravity.

When Fionn adds his liquid to fluid containing microplastics, the water turns black. Inserting and retrieving a magnet appears to pull out the oil and the microparticles together, leaving clear water behind. His method removed up to 88% of polypropylene during testing… notoriously hard to remove.

Learn more about microplastics and waste here!



Posted by Claire Edwards 12 July 2021

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