Project: Optimizing land-based fish production in next generation digital recirculating aquaculture systems Acronym DIGIRAS

Acronym DIGIRAS (Reference Number: 81)
Duration 01/09/2020 - 31/08/2023
Project Topic Recirculating aquaculture systems (RASs) have been developed for land-based production of sea- and freshwater species. These systems are designed to provide high biomass production while reducing resource usage and maximizing control of operational parameters. However, only a few of these parameters are systematically monitored, and currently applied analysis techniques are often insufficiently sensitive, slow or laborious. Consequently, the full potential of RASs for more sustainable food production remains unexploited. The over-all goal of the DIGIRAS project is to develop innovative and data-driven solutions for digitalization of future RAS technology in order to increase environmental compatibility, fish health and productivity. The project intends to reach this goal by systematic acquisition of relevant water quality data, parameterization of fish behaviour, developing new biological and chemical sensors and efficient water treatment technology. DIGIRAS will strive to integrate all generated data towards decision support and predictive tools for next generation digital RAS operation. In DIGIRAS, R&D institutions with strong competence in (micro)biology and chemistry, fish health, video monitoring/machine learning and advanced water treatment technology will join forces with industrial partners from the fish farming and RAS-technology sector. Together, this consortium will contribute to improve land-based fish farming technology significanlty, with respect to animal health, production conditions, environmental benefits and sustainability. Moreover, DIGIRAS aims at contributing to more sustainable growth in the aquaculture sector by developing new technologies, and thus, generating new jobs in infrastructurally less developed areas in Europe. In DIGIRAS, 6 R&D institutions and 5 industry partners (1 external contributor) from 5 participating European countries will collaborate for 36 months with a total funding budget of 1.68 Mio € (project budget 1.94 Mio €).
Project Results
(after finalisation)
DIGIRAS is expected to generate knowledge and new solutions supporting safer and more sustainable land-based fish farming and improving animal welfare in aquaculture. Main results will include: 1. Comprehensive microbiota data contributing to close important knowledge gaps on microbial ecology in RAS and corresponding farmed fish species; 2. Metagenomic data sets for genome mining, biomarker probe design and developing innovative qPCR-based arrays (Aqua-qPCR arrays); 3. High resolution data on priority chemical analytes in operational RASs; 4. Novel sensor technology for monitoring H2S online; 5. Energy-efficient and effective water treatment strategies for optimal water quality in RAS 6. Knowledge on fish behavior in RAS correlated to water quality; 7. Systematic data on fish health indicators correlated with microbiota and water chemistry data; 8. Innovative water quality data-based predictive and decision support models/tools based on machine learning and IoT.
Network BlueBio
Call 1st BlueBio Joint Call

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
1 SINTEF Coordinator Norway
2 Norwegian University of Life Sciences Partner Norway
3 Bielefeld University Partner Germany
4 University of Technology Partner Finland
5 International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory Partner Portugal
6 LetSea AS Partner Norway
7 FRESH Völklingen Gmbh Partner Germany
9 Akva Group Partner Norway
10 University of Patras Partner Greece
11 Norwegian Fish Farms Tydal AS (external contributor) Partner Norway