Technical and economical study of Aquaponics feasibility in northern Finland
|Author:||Dana Martín, Andreu1|
1University of Oulu, Faculty of Technology, Industrial Engineering and Management
|Online Access:||PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.2 MB)|
|Persistent link:|| http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:oulu-201708022724
A. Dana Martín,
|Publish Date:|| 2017-08-04
|Thesis type:||Master's thesis (tech)
The reutilization of waste products is an important matter where world view is focusing. The most common liquid waste is waste water coming from organic processes that carries an overdose of organic compounds, usually nontoxic. Traditionally this organic contaminants have been ignored and just pumped out to the environment, or in the best case neutralized into less contaminant forms. But during the past years eutrophication (overfertilization of aquatic ecosystems) has led to many environmental problems, pushing forward more active measures for removing such contaminants from water. One of the most promising ways of doing it is aquaponics, a soilless crop growing that uses waste water as fertilizer, solving two big problems: it cleans the waste water coming from fish factories and reduces the consume of fertilizer which is a product harmful to the environment in its production and use. This farming technique is really young but is gaining more popularity each year. This work is the study of the viability of implementing an aquaponics waste water treatment in a future fish farm in Oulu, on the north of Finland. Finland is a country with hard conditions for producing vegetables so most of them are imported. All the efforts made into not relying so much in external imports are welcomed and aquaponics was one of the options taken into account when deciding how the waste water cleaning process would be. The calculus process has been made step by step stating from the desired fish production and from there calculating how much vegetables would be produced and the amount of space it takes. In the economic aspect, it has been proved that the factor that caused most of the costs was the weather, as Oulu has a subpolar climate that is not mitigated enough for being a coastal city. The main result of the study has been that aquaponics does not report profits, being the artificial light the most expensive factor. Heat costs can be mitigated importing waste heat from another factories of the area like paper factories, but vegetables need artificial light in winter that has proven to be too much expensive for the benefits the vegetables reported. The study can be used as a basis for other aquaponics studies as it sets a system easy to follow for calculating the different parameters that appear in aquaponics. Also, it stays as an evidence that aquaponics can be hard of implement in extreme weather and other systems may be needed.
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