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Aquaculture

PrawnProject vision: To help Australian prawn farmers move to the forefront of efficient, high production, low-risk prawn aquaculture through near real-time sensing and forecasting of animals and ponds

The worldwide demand for marine-based protein is booming. Aquaculture is an intensive farming system capable of returning high yields of protein for human consumption and plays an important role in food security in many countries. Australia’s prawn industry produced over 5000 tonnes of prawns worth $87.7 million in 2014-5. Just 1% production improvement in farming practices could bring a further $16 million to the Australian industry annually.

Aquaculture is undergoing a transformation in scale both in Australia and globally, however there’s a substantial yield gap between how much is harvested and how much could be harvested.

At Digiscape, we’re working on novel techniques and technologies in sensing, data modelling, situational awareness and decision support to help the industry transform to more consistent yields, across far greater scales, to capture unrealised profits.

Augmented reality from the gaming world, pond and animal sensor technologies such as our spectral sensing and molecular fingerprinting, and the next generation of data interaction techniques will become the new way of assisted decision-making for both pond operations and collaborative management. Representing models and system states through state-of-the-art wearable technologies or virtual world representations will change the way field and board room decisions are made in aquaculture.

A man with a heads up display
Digiscape’s Dr Mingze Xi showing off one of the wearable technology systems

We’re also using a deep learning model to forecast key water quality variables 24 hours into the future from live sensor data captured in ponds. These forecasts will assist prawn farmers by providing them with valuable information that allows them to be more proactive in managing their prawn ponds. We are currently deploying it on an Australian prawn farm.

Read our media release.

 

This project is led by John McCulloch.