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In the News
  The patent-pending Aqua-Sphere® technology has been featured as “The Fish Farm of the Future” on the Discovery Channel,in March, 2008, and on National Geographic Explorer in August, 2008. It has also been featured on the cover of Biodiesel Magazine, Fish Farming International, NBC 6 News Miami, and others.
 
 
Technology must play a major role
in advancing commercial fish farming production, in order to have any chance at meeting world demand for seafood.

 

 
  Technology  
 

Aquaponics

AquaponicsThe objective of research & development at Aqua Biologics remains to produce technology and methodology innovations based upon the total integration of systems. This means using the by-product (or liability) of one production system for the production of a secondary or tertiary product. Hydroponics, the growing of plants without soil, was developed based upon experimentation to determine what makes plants grow and the actual composition of plants. Such experimentation dates back as early as the 1600's. However, plants were being grown in soil-less culture long before such documented experimentation. Egyptian hieroglyphic records dating back to several hundred years B.C. Describe the growing of plants in water ! The hanging gardens of Babylon, the floating gardens of the Aztecs of Mexico, and those of the Chinese are further examples of “hydroponic” culture.

Hydroponics has become a reality for greenhouse growers in virtually all climate areas. Today successful hydroponic operations exist throughout the United States and the world. These highly profitable businesses are currently growing a diversity of vegetables, herbs, and flowers. In arid regions of the world, where the supply of fresh water is limited, hydroponic complexes have been combined with desalinization facilities in order to use sea water as a source of fresh water. Some of these complexes are located near the ocean and the plants are grown in the existing beach sand.

The true beauty of hydroponic culture is the flexibility it allows in adapting to many situations from outdoor culture in fields, to greenhouses, to highly specialized culture in atomic submarines, bio-spheres, etc. It can be used in highly industrialized countries such as the U.S., and in developing countries in the Third World to provide intensive food production in a limited area.

To illustrate the potential use of hydroponics, tomatoes grown in a soil-less manner can yield 150 tons per acre annually vs. 5-10 tons per acre annually in traditionally soil based farming! The only necessities are fresh water and nutrients.

An Integrated Approach - Aquaponics

Growing fish and plants together is a remarkable concept, however it isn’t new. It has been done quite successfully throughout the world with a variety of species and under a variety of conditions. The procedure is quite logical in its application, as fish produce nitrogenous waste in the form of ammonia (and may fluctuate into other forms as ammonium, nitrite, nitrate), and plants require nitrogen for growth. The plants use the fish waste for food, and in so doing remove the waste from the water so it will not become toxic to the fish. This creates the ability to satisfy two completely different markets and double the profitability within the same amount of space.

AquaponicsIntegrated aquaculture is an excellent choice for any areas where land is at a premium. Further, aquaponics presents an excellent opportunity to capitalize on the rapidly growing organic marketplace. Aqua Biologics’s aquaponic operations are integrated into its Aqua-Sphere® operation in Florida City, FL. While sashimi grade hybrid striped bass is raised in the Aqua-Sphere®, the waste is concentrated, removed, and sent to a methane digester. The methane gas is used to power the air blower to run the Aqua-Sphere® , and the digested waste is utilized to grow fresh organic basil, thyme, dill, and several types of lettuce in an adjacent greenhouse.

While ABI uses premium hybrid striped bass as the production species in the integrated hydroponic operations, many other species can be used including tilapia, trout, salmon, barramundi, redfish, etc. The fish and produce species can be selected based upon the climate and market appeal.

 
     
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