Mechanical Scrubber for Aquaculture Netting
Net cleaning and maintenance represent a significant cost in the aquaculture industry. Clean nets are essential in maintaining a healthy stock, and achieving optimal yield. Fouled nets also generate drag, and the dirtier the net, the higher the loading on moored structures in the farm, which could lead to failures. However, few options exist that are truly efficient in terms of their consumption of power, labor, or massive capital investment. This project proposes a mechanical scrubber that will clean netting efficiently, thereby drastically lowering operating costs, and increasing margins for the farmer. Efficiency is especially important in the development of the aquaculture industry in the U.S. because of increased competition with products farmed in developing nations with lower labor costs. The U.S. has a ~$10 billion trade offset, and is becoming increasingly reliant on foreign seafood (FAO, 2008). The accountability of these foreign supplies is often suspect as well. A growing and accountable domestic aquaculture industry would increase food safety and security. However, due to high labor costs, advancements in technology, as proposed in this project, will be necessary to make this industry successful. Deliverables in this project include a comprehensive design report, prototype testing, and a working prototype at the end of Phase I. Phase II will include the construction of more robust prototype units, with more robust control systems for pilot study testing at aquaculture facilities.
Small Business Information at Submission:
2615 NE 5TH AVE Pompano Beach, FL 33064-5415
Number of Employees: