SBIR Phase I: The Natural Tag (TNT)
This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project is focused on automating the identification of individual fish while eliminating mutilation. The project, named TNT ("the natural tag"), is directed at developing a new fisheries management tool using the latest image processing/pattern recognition technology, and it is based on the knowledge that natural marks on animals, specifically fish, are unique and can be used to identify individuals over space and time. Proof-of-concept will demonstrate: 1) elimination of fish mutilation 2) larger number of fish 'tagged' per dollar spent, 3) more fish tagged per unit time, 4) a more comprehensive set of statistical data archived for each fish, 5) reduction or elimination of 'tag loss', and 6) elimination of tag reading errors. The first expected outcome substantially addresses the perennial issue of ethical standards and behavior with respect to mark-recapture science. The last five deal with advancing the state-of-the-art of fisheries science and represent immediate improvement of the cost/benefit ratio associated with fish tagging research and commercial aquaculture in local, state, federal and international programs. The TNT system will provide fisheries managers and scientists a higher level of biologically sound and statistically justifiable data.
Nationally, expected customers of this technology include Department of Commerce's NOAA, National Marine Fisheries Service and Department of Interior's U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and Bureau of Land Management, the Departments of Fish & Game for each of the 50 states as well as many universities. Organizations in approximately 35 foreign countries are target customers also.
Small Business Information at Submission:
Principal Investigator:Paul Skvorc
800 E Dimond Blvd Ste 3-450 Anchorage, AK 99515
Number of Employees: