Aquaponic Sludge Mineralisation & Desalination Loop – EAS2017

Two weeks ago, we have attended the Aquaculture Europe 2017 conference in Dubrovnik. I (Boris) presented our latest findings with respect to sludge mineralisation in aquaponic systems. It is a challenge to treat fish sludge within aquaponic systems to reduce the quantity of waste. Even more important is the objective to recover the valuable nutrients that are trapped in the sludge. Nutrient recovery by sludge mineralisation constitutes a great opportunity to complement the hydroponic nutrient solution in a sustainable manner.  Read more

Cooperation with desertfoods Namibia

In a previous article, we have pointed out the challenges and opportunities of aquaponic food production systems in Namibia and other (semi-) arid regions around the world. We are proud to announce to be a partner of the desertfoods aquaponics project in Namibia that we will tackle together with desertfoods Namibia PTY, Göteborgs Universitet, Wageningen University, University of Namibia, and IGZ.

A 12.000 m² climate-controlled greenhouse will be build in the Namib Desert East of Swakopmund next year. It will be expanded by another 32.000 m² after 3 years. This will be a great step towards increasing the food security of Namibia as well as the practical implementation of decoupled multi-loop aquaponic systems. The start of production expected to take place mid of 2018 with an annual output exceeding 543 metric tons of vegetables (tomatoes, sweet peppers, lettuce) and 63 metric tons of tilapia fish. Read more

namibia

Namibia – climate smart solutions to enhance food security

Climate change and the increase in the phenomena of droughts require drastic measures in terms of innovative agriculture approaches to maintain food securities in countries with water stress. Wageningen University (i.e. the author of this post, and Prof. Karel Keesman) wrote this strategic report that addresses the necessity and potential of the implementation of multi-loop aquaponic systems in Namibia. We are still looking for commercial farmers who want to join us on our journey into the future of agriculture. Read more

process control

The need for Process Control in next-generation Aquaponic Systems

In chemical engineering, processes are procedures encompassing mechanical, chemical, physical, electrical and biological steps to create a product from one or more substances. Decades of research and development have led to detailed knowledge of processes that shape our world today: from sawing off a piece of metal, to creating carbon nanotubes, everything that is industrially produced today comes from sets of very specific and controlled steps (i.e. process control (PC)).

Aquaponics -being an emerging field that deals with live organisms that can often be poorly understood-, can benefit from systematic engineering approaches found in process and chemical engineering disciplines. These approaches generally entitle breaking out a large process (a full aquaponic system in this case) into smaller sub-processes that can be studied both in isolation and in interaction with others. Read more