Mounting piles of waste is a major concern of governments to protect human health, the environment and to preserve natural resources. According to a World Bank Report, globally 1.3 billion tons of municipal solid waste gets generated each year. By 2025, that figure is expected to hit 2.2 billion tons.
The existing waste management systems are unable to efficiently deal with the tons of garbage that is generated every day. Automating the processes of garbage sorting and disposal by using artificial intelligence (AI) is expected to bring in better disposal methods to recycle sustainably.
Today, the way garbage is processed is surprisingly sophisticated. Deep-learning robots are gradually being implemented in recycling plants. Colorado start-up AMP Robotics has developed its garbage sorting robot called AMP Cortex. It uses AI recognition of waste products based on clues like logos, shapes, and textures, which eventually learns to identify objects correctly even if the waste is twisted, dirty or deformed. Likewise, Clean Robotics has developed AI-equipped trash-sorting robots named TrashBot to determine whether items are trash or recyclable by tracking the weight, condition, and makeup of the trash.
Focusing on Next Generation Recycling, ZenRobotics has developed robotic waste sorting system which employs computer vision, machine learning, 3D laser cameras, and spectroscopic cameras to sort recycling on a conveyor belt. While Barcelona start-up Sadako Technologies has developed an AI-infused garbage sorting systems Max-AI, it has brought a new innovations by including cloud technology.
Another recent Development in the field of waste management is the advent of bots to help people decide which bin to put their recyclable garbage into. For this purpose, start-up Intuitive AI uses AI sensor called Oscar which gets attached to any bin. The camera and ultrasonic sensor can detect when someone is approaching the bin, zoom in on the item in their hand and predict which section of the bin to put the item in. In a similar vein, Polish start-up Bin-E has developed a bin that automatically sort’s trash as it is fed in.
To deal with the garbage that is being generated all over the world beyond the imaginable quantities is one of the world's biggest challenges at this moment. Let’s treat this as a wakeup call and employ AI-powered technology for smart waste management, so that the coming generations can inherit a cleaner and more sustainable environment.
Credits : Akhil Handa,Pankaj Tadas