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Boyan Slat

24-year-old Dutch Boyan Slat is the founder and CEO of The Ocean Cleanup, a non-profit foundation he started in 2013 after dropping out of his Aerospace Engineering studies at TU Delft.

The Ocean Cleanup system uses water currents to gather floating ocean plastic trash into a 600-meter-long, U-shaped floating tube with a 3-meter-deep screen. The first system was deployed in October 2018 inside the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, the world's largest accumulation zone of ocean plastics halfway between Hawaii and California. Boyan´s goal is to remove half of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in 5 to 10 years.

Boyan Slat is the youngest-ever recipient of the UN’s highest environmental accolade „Champion of the Earth“. Boyan is also a member of the Thiel Fellowship, which awards $100,000 to young visionaries who drop out of university to start innovative startups.

The Ocean Cleanup

“Boyan's vision is to build the world´s largest floating barrier and to use the ocean’s own currents to capture plastic and clean up the massive Great Pacific Garbage Patch. I believe this project will have an incredibly positive impact on the future of our oceans."


- Sergio Penzo, Panthalassa

Boyan Slat


Boyan Slat received a custom-made portrait by German painter Vladimir Schneider, who finished his studies at Hamburg`s prestigious „Hochschule für Bildende Künste“ in 2014 and who was nominated for the Hiscox Art Prize the same year.

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