View Full Version : Cheap garbage barge design - Cambodia


mackhina
08-12-2009, 09:53 AM
Hi Everyone

I'm doing an assignment for first year Engineering at the University the University for the group engineers without borders. We have to design something that will improve the life of the Cambodian people who live on the Tonle Sap (it is a big lake). Currently they have a big problem with getting rid of there rubbish so they mostly just dump it in the water. I was thinking of trying to design a cheap to build barge out of local materials which would allow for them to transport and dispose of their waste.

I found a design where they were transporting skip bins which I htough was pretty cool. http://www.topskips.com/skip-hire-blog/skip_hire_industry_news/

I'm very restricted in regards to materials in Cambodia so that will limit my overall plan. The end designed though I hope would be able to service the rubbish needs of a small village of say 500 people.

Currently my group is still in the planning stages so any help or feedback would be much appreciated.

Cheers

Mick

Luckless
08-12-2009, 10:55 AM
Before you can design something to haul waste product from an area, you really need a detailed survey of just what that waste product is.

The goals of the survey should be to establish just what is being thrown out, and just how much of it there is. At the same time this study can be used to find methods to reduce the amount needed to be thrown out, killing two birds with one stone. Why pay to haul something that doesn't need to be hauled?

marshmat
08-12-2009, 12:53 PM
Good points, Luckless. It's always easier to start by understanding the task at hand, and then simplifying/reducing that workload as much as possible.

A garbage scow is hardly a glamorous craft, but it's certainly going to be an interesting design challenge. The restricted availability of materials will be the biggest issue if you go this route; knowing what's available locally will be key. Most coastal- and lake-dwelling communities already have some boatbuilding expertise, so it's worth learning about how things are usually done in that area.

But what's the point in hauling garbage around if you still don't have anywhere to put it? Do the local people have some other site, suitable for a landfill, that they want to use but can't get to? Or do they just want to get the garbage out of their town, not really caring where it ends up? Engineering solutions are not objects or things- they are complete systems, taking into account many different factors. The question of "how do we build a garbage scow from local materials" is only relevant if a garbage scow is part of the answer to "what is the best way to dispose of this community's waste".

Alik
08-12-2009, 02:14 PM
Hi Everyone

I'm doing an assignment for first year Engineering at the University the University for the group engineers without borders. We have to design something that will improve the life of the Cambodian people who live on the Tonle Sap (it is a big lake). Currently they have a big problem with getting rid of there rubbish so they mostly just dump it in the water. I was thinking of trying to design a cheap to build barge out of local materials which would allow for them to transport and dispose of their waste.

I found a design where they were transporting skip bins which I htough was pretty cool. http://www.topskips.com/skip-hire-blog/skip_hire_industry_news/

I'm very restricted in regards to materials in Cambodia so that will limit my overall plan. The end designed though I hope would be able to service the rubbish needs of a small village of say 500 people.

Currently my group is still in the planning stages so any help or feedback would be much appreciated.

Cheers

Mick

This is typical attitude of 'civilized foreigner' :)

I am sure they don't need garbage barge, they just need some cash or jobs! Pay them - and they will collect the garbage on boats they have there already.

FYI: Most of people in Cambodia live for 30US per month. And their main port KamponSom looks like a farm with cows walking on pier.

Luckless
08-12-2009, 04:14 PM
Actually I would have go to with the barge is a better idea than just using the boats they already have. That is, provided there is a suitable area to barge the garbage too, rather than just beyond their own village and then dumping it into the river so it is no longer their problem.


With each village having two or three barges of their own, owned by the village itself, then the barges may be parked and loaded one at a time from a central area. Allowing just one or two people to work part time to tend the barge as it gets full and bring the load down river. As opposed to many people running around in smaller boats, doing more labor for the same end effect.

Having dedicated barges also means you are not forcing double duty on smaller boats that may be used for fishing. I'm not sure about you, but I like the idea of my fish not traveling to my plate the same way it travels from it.


However a little more thought makes me think that the shipping of waste is not really needed at all. The society there isn't running off to walmart twice a week to load up on stuff they'll throw out two weeks from now. A far better project is likely setting up facilities to sort and safely reuse/recycle waste product, and compost those best suited to the process. For anything else that is thrown out as waste and not falling into the above types should be eliminated from use if possible.

If you really have your heart set on a barge project to help the community, look into specialized services, something that all communities around the water system need some use of, but that is too complex or expensive to justify any one village setting up a permanent service there. Design a system that allows use as multiple kinds of workshops or equipment moving.

apex1
08-12-2009, 06:04 PM
I like to completely concur with Alik (not for the first time), they for sure have what they need, and it is impossible to get a boat as cheap (and adapted) as the local boats. On top of that, when you bring in a new technology, you possibly destroy grown structures in the local market. That maybe the flip side of the coin, they get rid of the crap, but some get rid of the job too.

Here are some "local" boats that could do the job for pennies. Pictures show boats on the Irrawaddy river Burma, but those on Tonle Sap are similar.

http://www.boatdesign.net/forums/attachments/open-discussion/31447d1241134839t-where-sany0086.jpg
http://www.boatdesign.net/forums/attachments/open-discussion/31449d1241140739t-where-sany0008-2-.jpg

mackhina
08-12-2009, 08:03 PM
Hey all

Thanks for the comments so far.

Alik, I agree with you in the sense that all that is required is an income and the job will take care of itself. That is a part of our design brief and our solution. We hope that by generating an income from transporting the waste for disposal rather than dumping it into the water the idea will be more appealing to the communities. Secondly if someone makes money through the collection of waste, they will promote the idea.

The community already recycles cans and bottles to some degree. Food scraps are used for animal feedstock. Beyond that it all just get's thrown in the water. This ranges from sewage, monthly womens stuff, used packaging, plastic bags, etc.

Here's a link to some of the rubbish http://picasaweb.google.com.au/2009EWBChallenge/WasteManagement#5319867218751346146.

Other Universities in previous years had been trailing a platoon where the rubbish could be stored, then burned in the dry season. This worked and was quite popular until they filled the platoon too quickly.

Ideally I was actually hoping to use a boat similar to what they currently have but modified to take in the advantages of barges features. Barges have flat bottoms and can handle large loads. While I was googling designs I came across this site were users had commented on wooden barges promoted by the USAID, so I thought I would ask to see if people where aware of similar things that might be able to be implemented into Cambodia.

Thanks for the help and suggestions so far.

peterAustralia
08-12-2009, 08:12 PM
Logic suggests a wooden barge in barge shape

how many tonnes does it have to carry. If is 50 to 100 tonnes then wood ought be fine, if bigger then steel may make more sense. When you google barge or scow, you tend to get flat bottomed wide craft with straight ends not pointy ends. Is garbage to be lifted on or rolled on. If is to lifted aboard does it need a small crane. How big is the garbage bundle, or is it loose?

as a first year student, I do not think they are going to be really hard on you, just make a decent effort, with research, figures, diagrams, references, calculations etc

Alik
08-13-2009, 12:02 AM
This is the photo I made in KamponSom (Cambodia) in 2006...

When people are trying to survive, there is no concern about such western 'values' as the environment protection or democracy :)
However temples in Cambodia are very clean!

apex1
08-13-2009, 08:58 AM
However temples in Cambodia are very clean!

And so are the minds of the people! We should not forget how much these people have been abused for decades and they are still soft tempered and brilliant by character.

And that picture I can take daily on Turkish roads!

Alik
08-13-2009, 09:32 AM
And so are the minds of the people! We should not forget how much these people have been abused for decades and they are still soft tempered and brilliant by character.


That's true. That day we checked in the country for pack of salami, without having Cambodian visas!

apex1
08-13-2009, 09:46 AM
That's true. That day we checked in the country for pack of salami, without having Cambodian visas!

Ja. They make you easily redefine the meaning of tolerance when you visit their country open minded.
And now we imagine to bring a high tech (low sense) vessel there and fuc. their local boatyards, to solve a problem they would´nt have when others would´nt act the same or similar way!

Regards
Richard

ancient kayaker
08-13-2009, 10:05 AM
... We have to design something that will improve the life of the Cambodian people who live on the Tonle Sap (it is a big lake). Currently they have a big problem with getting rid of there rubbish so they mostly just dump it in the water ...

As defined, the problem needs a systematic approach rather than a piecemeal one. It sounds like some action is already in place for re-use and recycle, although reducing the volume of garbage should be under constant review.

For example, in my area recycling of materials such as paper and plastic has been in effect for some time, although probably delayed by the fact that Canada is a very resource- and land-rich country which reduces the gains that can be made. More recently compostables have been separated from the garbage stream, which has had the huge advantage that the remaining waste is not only less, but also not as unpleasant. The material going to landfill locally is now primarily packaging, with concerns over toxic chemicals being raised. Proposals have been put forward to reduce or eliminate plastic bubble packs and expanded plastic foam which are difficult to concentrate or recycle cost-effectively. A number of toxic chemicals have recently been banned from use or sale, but that is not typical for all of Canada and the nearest large city trucks its waste to US (!) landfills. A new landfill is being imposed in a nearby rural location over the objections of the local residents to handle the unnecessarily large volume of waste from that same city, which does a far less adequate job of minimizing garbage than it could or should, certainly makes less effort than the very people who will watch hundreds of trucks pass their doors on their way to the new site every week. This becomes a political hot potato, and has been for years, which again delays necesary action. The most obvious solution, separation of compostables and burning the rest for power generation, faces objections for the NIMBY lobby.

All of the above is merely to illustrate some of the difficulties that prevent adoption of good garbage handling practices anywhere in the world.

Returning to the system concept, with re-use, recycling, composting and toxics control measures in place, the remaining task is collection and concentration of garbage in one place for processing, whether that be combustion or burial. This would be the function that the suggested skip concept might address. If I understand correctly, a barge can be made up by joining several skips together for transportation to a processing facility, while the individual skips can be distributed around the lake for the collection stage. This would be preferable to using several small boats for collection and transferring garbage to a bigger barge for transportion because the handling of the garbage, not a pleasant task, is reduced and the problem of spillage during the handling phase is virtually eliminated.

From the posts of Alik and Apex1, the Cambodian people seem more willing to work together for the common good than N. Americans are. That is a priceless national resource that can lead to safe, sensible and effective solutions to a problem that faces us all on this planet. Show us the way!

View Full Version : Cheap garbage barge design - Cambodia