Controlled Environment Aquaponics. What is aquaponics? Aquaponics is an integrated system that combines hydroponics and aquaculture. In an aquaponics

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Controlled Environment Aquaponics Slide 2 What is aquaponics? Aquaponics is an integrated system that combines hydroponics and aquaculture. In an aquaponics system, the waste water from aquaculture subsystem is used to fertilize plants, and the plants reduce nutrient levels in the water. Slide 3 Benefits of Aquaponics Reduce chemical fertilizer use for hydroponics Reduce water disposal for aquaculture operation Controlled Environmental Agriculture benefits: year-round, local food production Slide 4 Challenges of Aquaponics pH compromise: plants grow best at pH of 6.0-6.5 while fish grow best at pH of 7.5-8.0 Temperature compromise: optimal temperature for plants doesnt match necessarily the optimal temperature for fish Nutrient level in the fish water is low compared to plant nutrient needs Elements in the fish waste are not in proper molecular ratios required by plants Slide 5 Objectives of Morrisville Aquaponics Project Demonstrate feasibility of an aquaponics system under controlled environment (greenhouse) in New York State Quantify inputs and outputs of the system Market products Slide 6 Overview of the Morrisville State College Aquaculture Facilities Boiler buildingInstrument shed Greenhouse Aquaculture Center (image from Bingmaps.com) Slide 7 Greenhouse The dimensions of the greenhouse are 30 feet by 60 feet The roof is made of double PE film The side walls are constructed of PVC panel The structure is heated by hot-water (hydroponic) heating and cooled by a fan-and-pad system The horizontal air flow fans are used for air recirculation There is an energy curtain for shading and energy conservation, insect screen and LED and high pressure sodium supplemental lighting Slide 8 Nutrient Film Technique (NFT) Hydroponic System Slide 9 Floating Raft Subsystem Slide 10 Aquaculture Subsystem There are two 600 gallon fish tanks and one 800 gallon tank. Each tank is equipped with a solid removal device (bead filters),UV sterilizers, a biofilter, blower, settling tanks and pumps Slide 11 Aquaculture Subsystem Slide 12 Lettuce growth It takes 40 days to grow 5 ounces of lettuce. At full capacity, the Morrisville State College greenhouse could produce over 30,000 heads of lettuce annually. In 2012, the College controlled environment agriculture facility diversified its crops and grew over 6000 heads of lettuce, over 300 pounds of basil, bok choy, arugula, and 90 pounds of tomatoes and cucumbers. Slide 13 Tilapia growth It takes about 8 months to grow a one pound tilapia. In 2012, the Morrisville State College controlled environment agriculture facility produced nearly 600 pounds of tilapia. Slide 14 Electricity and Fuel Usage In 2012, the Morrisville State College controlled environment agriculture greenhouse used about 147 kWh per day, for a total of 53,778 kWh annual energy. The two 300,000 BTU/hr boilers used 4,360 gallons of fuel oil to heat the greenhouse, fish tanks, monitoring shed, biodiesel production lab, and the boiler building. One of the two boilers now runs on biodiesel produced on campus! Slide 15 Biodiesel from Dining Hall Fryer Oil Campus dining facilities use 2500 gallons of oil per year The boiler is operated by students and currently processes 50 gallons per batch with 1 to 2 batches per week The campus uses biodiesel for heating the greenhouse during the winter and for farm tractor fuel in the summer Slide 16 Water Consumption In 2012, the controlled environment agriculture greenhouse used an average of 142 gallons of water per day, resulting in 51,975 gallons for the year Slide 17 Feasibility of Aquaponics While aquaponics is technically feasible, it remains economically challenging under the climate of New York State. Renewable energy options can improve the economics for aquaponics by using wastes as fuel for combined heat and power (CHP). Madison County Landfill CHP Morrisville State College Digester CHP Morrisville State College Biomass Gasification CHP Slide 18

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