This project will research and develop novel concepts for autonomous operations and technology to improve safety and efficiency in aquaculture. In particular, the project will address daily operations and inspection, maintenance, and repair (IMR) for exposed locations, but the project results will also be applicable to more sheltered fish production. Moreover, the project will assess, utilize and possibly adapt technology developed for subsea IMR in the oil and gas industry. Advances in sensor technology, robotics, ICT, and localization methods create new opportunities for reducing operators' manual workload and exposure time on the facilities at sea, for preventing fish escape, and for improving safety and operational efficiency. Current technologies and operations in fish farms are highly dependent on manual labor, which leads to close human interactions with tools and fish cage structures. The sea-based aquaculture industry is one of the most dangerous occupations in Norway, and fish farms operate at the edge of safety limits. Moving fish farms into more exposed areas will lead to increased challenges related to the working environment and management of operations. Hence, technological innovation and autonomy are important for future industry expansion. To ensure that the new concepts reduce risk to people and the environment, adequate risk management becomes even more important for sustainable fish farming operations in the future. In short, the research challenges related to this proposal are: -To research and develop a novel integrated risk management framework for aquaculture, which links occupational and major hazard risk closer to environmental performance, focusing on the opportunities for autonomy in technologies and operations. -To research and develop innovative autonomous technology for aquaculture operations related to the outcomes of the risk management framework. -To test/verify concepts in relevant NTNU/industry facilities.
Project leader: Ingrid Bouwer Utne
Institution: Institutt for marin teknikk