Testing Tidal Technology: To Make Salmon Farming More Sustainable
Mowi has been researching and testing a new underwater sensing system developed by Tidal at Alphabet’s X in Norway over the past three years.
After an extensive research and development period involving field testing and data collection, the project is now ready for commercial validation and Mowi will be rolling out the technology to multiple sites across Norway.
Tidal has been developing the advanced underwater sensing and software analysis platform that gathers intelligence on real-time growth, weight distribution, feeding control, and automatic lice counting for salmon.
Using a combination of new camera technology as well as machine learning and machine perception, Tidal’s system is able to track and model fish behaviours, environmental conditions, and the health of salmon over time.
“Mowi’s vision is to be leading the Blue Revolution,” notes Mowi CEO Ian Vindheim. “As the biggest salmon farmer in the world we have a special responsibility to engage in the development of technology to improve our competitive advantage and to optimise our farming of healthy and sustainable food from the ocean. Thus, it is very encouraging to work with Tidal to further develop ocean farming technology.”
Tidal’s technology brings multiple capabilities into a single hardware and software platform and provides farmers with real-time information so that they can confidently manage their daily operations.
Tidal General Manager Neil Dave adds that “Tidal’s mission is to protect the ocean and preserve its ability to support life and help feed humanity, sustainably. Our initial area of focus is on developing technologies that bring greater visibility and understanding of what’s happening under the water.”
After spending lots of time out on the water, Dave notes that Tidal’s underwater camera system and a set of machine perception tools can detect and interpret fish behaviors not visible to the human eye.
Their software can track and monitor thousands of individual fish over time, observe and log fish behaviors like eating, and collect environmental information like temperature and oxygen levels.
“This kind of information gives farmers the ability to track the health of their fish and make smarter decisions about how to manage the pens — like how much food to put in the pens, which we hope can help reduce both costs and pollution,” Dave stated on his blog.
By employing artificial intelligence to analyse big data, Mowi hopes to understand and respond to long-term trends in fish behaviour and thereby further optimise ocean farming.
“With a combined vision to fully realise the potential of our seas for sustainable food production, our Research and Development department collaborated with the Tidal team as they developed their underwater sensing and analysis platform,” states Mowi CTO Oyvind Oaland. “This is the start of a journey towards finding new and innovative uses of technology throughout our value chain in the years to come.”
Dave adds: “We are delighted to be working with Mowi to provide tools that we hope can help Mowi make their operations more sustainable.”