Mirjam van der Mheen

PhD Candidate in Oceanography, University of Western Australia

I study the transport mechanisms and accumulation regions of floating plastic waste in the Indian Ocean as a PhD candidate at the University of Western Australia. In my research, I use GPS-tracked ocean surface drifters to study the movement of floating objects. I do this using datasets from globally available drifter programs as well as by building and deploying my own drifters. Using observed locations from different types of drifters, combined with several numerical models and tools, I determine what happens to floating plastic waste in the Indian Ocean.


  • 2016–present
    PhD candidate, University of Western Australia
  • 2013–2016
    Junior researcher/advisor, Deltares, Delft, The Netherlands


  • 2012 
    Utrecht University, MSc Meteorology, Physical Oceanography & Climate
  • 2009 
    Utrecht University, BSc Physics & Astronomy