Inauguration of the Vila do Conde Bubble Barrier

We are pleased to announce the inauguration of the marine litter removal technology - the Bubble Barrier - in the estuary of the River Ave, in the City of Vila do Conde, on November 25, 2023.


The implementation of this innovative technology is the result of a partnership between the H2020 MAELSTROM team, where CIIMAR is the Portuguese representative, and Vila do Conde City Council to co-design and implement an innovative Bubble Barrier in Portugal to capture plastic in the Ave estuary in Vila do Conde.


Funded by the European Commission under the H2020 Program, MAELSTROM brings together a consortium of 14 international partners, coordinated by the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), with the mission of designing, developing and integrating scalable, replicable and automated technologies with renewable energy to identify, remove, classify and transform collected marine litter into raw materials with market value. Developed by our partner The Great Bubble Barrier, the Bubble Barrier is an innovative and efficient #technology that captures #plastics in rivers, before they reach the #ocean, by means of a curtain of air bubbles. The system is co-powered by a system of solar panels - both ground and floating - designed and produced by the Sustainable Energy Institute - University of Malta, also a MAELSTROM partner.


The implementation of this technology had the scientific supervision of CIIMAR, which led several missions to assess the ecological state of the Ave estuary in order to understand the environmental impact of the Bubble Barrier on this ecosystem, as well as developing a hydrodynamic model to support the technology. CIIMAR also coordinated the involvement of local, regional and national stakeholders, such as Docapesca - Portos e Lotas, S.A., the Portuguese Environment Agency, the Maritime Authority - Vila do Conde Captaincy, LIPOR and the Vila do Conde Environmental Monitoring and Interpretation Center (CMIA Vila do Conde), who were fundamental to the successful design and implementation of the entire system and to whom we are extremely grateful!


The Vila do Conde Bubble Barrier will be officially inaugurated on the morning of November 25th at the CMIA in Vila do Conde, during a public event.


Join us in this moment of community celebration with the close involvement of local, regional, national and international stakeholders!