Satellite solution means fish farmers can manage feeding remotely
Fish farmers will be able to monitor remote farm sites by video link, even if there is no cellular connectivity or power on site, thanks to technology developed by satellite communications specialist Krucial.
Using the new solution, fish farmers can get a continuous video stream from pens, whether or not there is any cellular connectivity or power available. This means, Krucial says, it will be possible to feed individual pens remotely using a desktop or mobile, based on the insights gained.
The new solution will transmit high bandwidth video data over cellular or satellite, whichever is available. If the primary satellite fails, a secondary satellite kicks in to maximise resilience. This means that even in extreme weather or further offshore, where connectivity has traditionally been an obstacle, farmers still have an overview of their operations and can still feed remotely.
The application uses satellite technology, with auto adjusting flat panel antennas, so that barge movement does not impact the technology’s usability, offering an advantage over “line of sight” solutions. If a farm is off the west coast of Scotland or Ireland, for example, and the operator is onshore or even thousands of miles away, the company says, they will be able to monitor fish behaviour continuously and feed with the click of a button.
The video application is part of Krucial’s Connected Seafarm package, providing what the company says is the final piece of a solution that incorporates remote feeding enablement, algae detection, environmental monitoring, barge telemetry and asset condition management. Krucial is now looking to work with partners to pilot the new technology in the field.
The company says that, currently, poor connectivity on many fish farms makes remotely understanding fish behaviour challenging. This can impact decisions around exactly how much feed to distribute to sustain fish and maximise their welfare while minimising waste. Krucial’s solution will enable farmers to feed remotely from anywhere on earth – meaning during extreme weather or when other tasks come up, staff resource can be optimised. Given the significant cost of feed to the sector, the ability to optimise feeding can contribute to cost savings as well as the management of ocean impact.
Kevin Quillien, Co-founder and CTO of Krucial, said: “This is a huge step forward for Krucial and our offering to the aquaculture industry. We are confident that with our new capabilities we are providing fish farmers with the ultimate tool in understanding what’s happening at their farms – ranging from fish behaviour to water quality to equipment conditions.
“Farmers can now sit at home or in the office, with all the information they need at their fingertips to take quick action that boosts efficiency and sustainability and reduces risk – even at their most remote and inaccessible sites.
“Aquaculture is on a mission to feed the world sustainably and this tool makes that job much easier, saving the industry time and money while benefitting the environment. We are looking forward to working with early adopters in the coming months.”
Krucial is actively engaging with a number of aquaculture operators about a series of pilots over the next few months.