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Intensified fish farming. Performance of electrochemical remediation of marine RAS waters

Abstract: Aquaculture has been the fastest growing agricultural sector in the past few decades and currently supplies about half of the fish market. A range of environmental and management concerns including limited land and water availability have led to intensifying fish production by recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS). Fish's diet contains 30-60 % protein and about 4-10 % nitrogen (N). As fish assimilate only 20-30 % of the feed to produce body mass, the unassimilated N is released in the form of toxic ammonium that deteriorates water quality and compels its degradation. Widely extended biological nitrification is not efficient in the removal of nitrites nor other chemicals and pharmaceuticals used during fish culture. Electrochemical oxidation, a less developed alternative, reports several advantages such as, i) simultaneous degradation of ammonia-nitrogen (TAN) and water disinfection in the same step with considerable simplification of the whole process, ii) easy adaptability to different production scales and periods of fish growth, and iii) no generation of harmful by-products and no use of chemicals, among others. Besides, in the case of marine aquaculture, the technology benefits from the high conductivity of seawater; thus, electrochemical oxidation is positioned in a very good place to satisfy the water treatment needs of the increasing production rate of marine aquaculture fish. Here, we report the analysis of the performance of a RAS demonstration plant aimed at farming gilthead sea bream (Sparus aurata) and sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) and provided with electrochemical remediation of culture water. The performance of the plant, with 20 m3 of seawater operating at a recirculation rate of 0.9-1.4 h-1, has been analysed in terms of TAN removal, water disinfection, make-up water intake and energy consumption and compared to data of conventional RAS provided with biofilters. The benefits and advantages of the innovative electrochemical remediation of RAS water are highlighted.

 Authorship: Santos G., Ortiz-Gándara I., Del Castillo A., Arruti A., Gómez P., Ibáñez R., Urtiaga A., Ortiz I.,

 Fuente: Science of the Total Environment, 2022, 847, 157368

 Publisher: Elsevier

 Publication date: 15/11/2022

 No. of pages: 11

 Publication type: Article

 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.157368

 ISSN: 0048-9697,1879-1026

 Spanish project: PDC2021-120905-I00

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