Yesterday I was staring at a plastic flower pot in a store and thought, why don’t we use computer vision to sort recycling?
Of course someone else already thought of it:
The United States makes up 4% of the world’s population but produces more waste-to-population than any other country at 12%. “ India and China make up more than 36% of the world’s population and generate 27% of the world’s waste.
Yikes, we are so wasteful.
Last year, China stopped accepting the majority of U.S. recycled plastic products. Why? Contamination problems. Contamination is a huge issue for recycling plants.
I feel quite thankful for this movie, although banned in China.
According to a report at the University of Illinois School of Public Health, recycling workers are twice as likely to be injured on the job as other workers.
Cameras and high-tech computer systems that are trained to recognize specific objects will guide robots’ arms over conveyor belts to reach their target. Oversized fingers with sensors that are attached to the arms are able to snag cans, glass, plastic containers, and any other recyclable items out of the otherwise garbage and place them in their respective bins.
Ha this is how I fantasized it would be like.
I’ve seen robots making coffee in San Francisco, I thought it was so dumb. As if we don’t already have highly automated coffee machines already, we just HAVE to use a robot arm to make coffee, when we have more pressing issue like plastic waste at hand. (Just shows how detached the tech startup scene can be sometimes.)
This article mentioned a few startups in this space, worth checking out. One in Finland, one in London and one in California.