Changing the Way Seafood is Raised
ABI is on the cusp of revolutionizing technology for the aquaculture industry with its advanced, patented Aqua-Sphere® system. Aqua-Sphere® is an innovative, floating, semi-rigid containment system for intensive aquaculture production. The system features the world’s only jointed, articulating floating tank. This disruptive technology was designed to provide an eco-friendly, energy efficient alternative to self-polluting cages and net pens. We are changing the way seafood is being raised.
An Evolution in Eco-friendly Production
A few of the many technological innovations of the Aqua-Sphere® system include:
- Jointed tank technology – absorbs wave and wind impact
- Solid waste recovery system – sustainable, non-polluting production
- Energy efficient air-lift pumping system – cost effective operations
- Uses alternative energy power – Clean and green
- Proprietary inter-tank fish transport system – Stress-free fish transport
- Remote monitoring system – security
- Solar-powered automatic feeding system – reduces manpower
Aqua-Sphere® is the way seafood will be produced in the future.
Fully integrated and environmentally compliant, the Aqua-Sphere® provides an ideal habitat for production of a wide variety of seafood products in salt and freshwater, as well as warm and coldwater. Aqua-Spheres® will be manufactured in a variety of sizes to accommodate large scale commercial production down to small-scale private farming.
Aqua-Sphere® is a complete floating fish production system whose nucleus is the world’s first jointed tank.
Aqua-Spheres® are available in a variety of sizes ranging from 30 feet to 60 feet in diameter, and all components are modular in design and can be easily assembled on-site. Aqua-Sphere® may be interconnected with flexible pipe corridors which allow fish to be moved from one tank to another without handling. This reduces stress, abrasion, disease and mortality from transport. Each Aqua-Sphere® is connected to a flexible floating working platform that allows easy access to all tanks, provides secondary floatation and storage, and is anchored to the bottom. Primary floatation of each Aqua-Sphere® is accomplished through a unique, self-regulating, air injection, floatation system incorporated into the walls of each tank. The double-walled construction provides maximum durability and protection.
The Aqua-Sphere® functions as both a nursery and grow-out production system, eliminating the need for costly land-based hatchery systems.
Net pen systems require larger fish for initial stocking which necessitates a land-based nursery. With Aqua-Sphere®, fish can now be stocked at significantly smaller sizes, thereby saving on fingerlings, labor, and transportation costs.
Shipping and transportation are simple and cost effective.
Aqua-Sphere’s® modular design, high-impact polyethylene, and articulating joints, allow for ease of use in a variety of settings, and with a variety of fish species. Aqua-Sphere® is manufactured to withstand environmental stressors without compromising the efficiency and efficacy of waste collection.
Aqua-Sphere's® circular design provides the perfect environment for successful and rapid fish growth, while creating a natural flow of solids to the proprietary solid waste removal system.
In this device, waste is automatically concentrated in preparation for usage. Recycling of fish waste turns a liability into an asset by creating a good fertilizer for hydroponics, or pelletization for fertilizers. ABI’s integrated approach leaves nothing to waste!
Aqua-Sphere® provides security to the farmer in a number of ways.
The farmer no longer has to be concerned with tears or holes in netting where fish escape and predators enter. Aqua-Sphere® can easily be closed off from the exterior environment to isolate the fish from adverse environmental situations for example anoxic conditions due to lake inversion, toxic algae blooms, for disease treatment, etc.
Second & third generation systems are already in design for shellfish, flatfish, and seaweed production.
Environmental Necessity Influences Change
The paradigm shift has begun ! U.S and Canadian legislation and advisory groups have already started to call for the elimination of net pens for fish production. Aqua-Sphere® technology serves as an economically and environmentally superior alternative to currently available cages and net pens.
Cages and net pens have been around for thousands of years. A simplistic method of confining fish in an open body of water, these systems allow waste and pollutants to readily flow into the environment. They also attract a host of predators that can stress, kill, and allow escapement of the crop, as well as damage the system. Net pens/cages exist in a variety of different sizes and shapes, with some that float and others that submerge, however they all have the same problems.
|Aqua-Sphere®||Other Containment Systems||Net Pens|
|High Production Densities||YES||SOME||NO|
|Solid Waste Removal||YES||YES||NO|
|Sustain Wave/Impact Forces||YES||NO||NO|
|Crop can be isolated from Outside environment||YES||YES||NO|
|Use in remote areas||YES||NO||NO|
|Use in shallow or deep water||YES||SOME||NO;|
|Easy to harvest||YES||SOME||NO|
|Eliminates Fish Escape||YES||SOME||NO|
|Can be used as Nursery And Grow-out||YES||SOME||NO|
|Can transfer fish between Tanks w/out handling||YES||NO||NO|
The buzzword of the seafood industry today is sustainability! Simply stated, production methods and fisheries management that will ensure that the fish (and shellfish) we eat today will be available tomorrow, five years from now, and into the future. A difficult objective given the current worldwide market demands on seafood, but one that we must comply with, or risk being without.
The global applications for Aqua-Sphere® are enormous.
As population growth continues at an unprecedented pace, land availability decreases and price increases, making this resource more difficult to access for commercial development. In the near future, global aquaculture may heavily rely on existing water-based environments such as quarries, mineral mines, lakes, estuaries, bays, near-shore and the open ocean, for freshwater, brackish, and marine sites. These sites are often inexpensive and accessible. Additionally, water quality factors have forced most successful operations to base in remote areas. The dependence upon waterfront land and electricity has severely limited the development of aquaculture worldwide.
The Aqua-Sphere® System is designed to operate via alternative energy sources, and be self-sufficient.
The successful integration of alternative energy applications and effective waste removal set the stage for the spread of commercial fish farming into areas of the world that up until now were not feasible. The impact of utilizing this resource to meet future demand through the development of sustainable operations could be revolutionary.
Freshwater applications present some of the greatest opportunities based upon the broad diversity of resources. Quarries, mineral mines, stormwater treatment areas, lakes, ponds, and even passive river systems are overlooked resources. Their limitation in the past was water quality. Self-polluting net pens and cage systems simply cannot operate sustainably in a closed body of water. Waste quickly causes euthrophication and changes the composition of the lake, lowering pH and dissolved oxygen. The Aqua-Sphere® System eliminates these concerns by concentrating and removing solid waste.
Millions of water- acres are available worldwide in freshwater that are not currently being used. The Aqua-Sphere® will significantly open worldwide opportunities to sustainably farm these waters.
Saltwater applications for the Aqua-Sphere® are endless. Near and off-shore mariculture is expanding worldwide, however the potential is much greater. Permitting, environmental legislation, and environmental activists have limited growth in this sector. All of these entities raise concerns about waste and pollution. If this aspect is removed, the industry bottleneck will also be eliminated, which will pave the way for growth in the immediate future.
Many sensitive areas such as coral reefs, kelp forests, lagoons, etc. have always been excluded from mariculture development as they typically provide sanctuaries for tourism, and governments are not willing to risk the resource loss. The eco-friendly operation of Aqua-Sphere® provides the capability for mariculture to live in harmony with these sensitive areas, while providing valuable seafood production.