Cellpic Sunday – 1 December 2019

Baltimore, Maryland.

The Marriott Hotel in the Inner Harbor area is built on the banks of the Jones Falls River. In the river across from the hotel is a strange moored vessel known informally as Mr. Trash Wheel. In the photo above, the river flows from right to left and not far behind Mr. Trash Wheel the river flows into the larger Inner Harbor area.

Known officially as the Inner Harbor Water Wheel, its purpose is to keep floating trash from entering the harbor area creating a hazard to watercraft. The floating orange booms at the front (right in the photo) of the solar and water powered vessel direct any floating debris in the river toward the mouth of the craft. River currents power the wheel and any floating trash is picked up by a conveyor and deposited in a dumpster barge hidden behind the white awning and water wheel. Solar panels provide electricity to power the wheel when river current is sluggish. The ingenious invention was conceived by John Kellett in 2008. The current machine is much larger than the original and went online in 2014. Funding for the project drew private and public funds and was built for less than $750,000 USD.

Within two years, Mr. Trash Wheel had kept over one million pounds of debris from entering the Inner Harbor area. According to Wikipedia, it’s record haul for a day was 19 tons of garbage. For more information on this device, a video of the device in operation, and a functional diagram, visit here.

About the photo: Captured from the river bank next to the hotel, this image came from my Samsung S6 cellphone in automatic exposure mode. The image was edited in Lightroom and Luminar Flex. In most browsers you can click on the image to enlarge it for a better view.

John Steiner

8 thoughts on “Cellpic Sunday – 1 December 2019

    • Indeed, flowing from the communities living up river. It isn’t all trash, some natural materials like floating logs, branches, etc. still and all, it doesn’t speak well of the litterers.

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