Patje Plastic

General information

Client Port of Antwerp 
Project Patje Plastic 
Year 2019 
Location Doeldok, Port of Antwerp 

Scope of work

Port of Antwerp has commissioned Allseas to develop a plastic collection system in the city’s “Doeldok” zone. The port authority says the introduction of a passive and autonomous catcher system will significantly reduce the quantity of pollutant plastics (such as pellets) found in the waters around Doeldok, which is also home to a large plastic producing factory. Allseas’ system is a first “proof of concept” for cleaner docks and inland waterways. The system was fabricated and tested in Heijningen and  installed November 2019.

Assembled from 75% recycled materials and modularly attached to the quay, the plastic catcher is simple in design, working on the basis of wind, water and gravity. A narrow 100 m long floating arm, 1.5 m in depth, guides floating and under water waste into the receptacle where a series of filter systems separates larger and smaller waste. When full, the containers are effortlessly disconnected and emptied, and the waste transported for processing. Challenges such as maintenance, the impact of waves and accessibility are solved with one ingenious design.

In the port of Antwerp, like the rest of Belgium, the wind blows predominantly from the southwest. Certain places in the port are therefore hotspots for waste. For this reason, the northernmost corner of the Doeldok was chosen as the first location for the plastic catcher. An area that would otherwise be difficult to reach for the traditional collection of waste by the “Condor” ship will be cleaned more efficiently and without risks. The collected plastic will be recycled.

Watch the video of the plastic catcher in the Port of Antwerp.
Read more about the plastic catcher on the Port of Antwerp website.

European grant LIFE awarded to back Allseas’ plastic removal efforts

Our efforts have received EU financial backing in the form of a grant under the LIFE programme, the EU’s funding instrument for environmental and climate action. Over the next three years, our “LIFE SouPLess” project aims to support existing waste management processes, and develop and deploy state-of-the-art plastic identification and recovery tools in support of the EU Water Framework Directive.

Read more about Allseas’ river plastics removal project  and other sustainability efforts.
More projects in the Benelux by Allseas’ river plastics removal team: Catchy, Catchy 2 and Catchy Mini.