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Saving Water and Maintaining a Constant Temperature –ICP DAS Application Scenario for Smart Aquaculture

  Two types of remote I/O module are implanted in this scenario, including the tM-P4C4 module and the tM-DA1P1R1 module, connected to field sensors and devices. Using ZT-2550 and ZT-2551 modules, which are based on ZigBee wireless communication, allow us to send data back to the server. The flexibility of module installation based on on-site situations will sharply lower the cost of wiring. Furthermore, the tGW-715, Tiny Modbus gateway, allows us to reliably switch from Modbus TCP to Modbus RTU via the Ethernet.
  With various sensors installed that can acquire the data of power consumption, water information, meteorological information, and logic control in order to achieve the goal of smart farming. In response to the demands of environmental protection, an energy management solution was adopted in this scenario as well. Without a doubt, the technique reduces costs for our customers by making use of renewable energy to generate power. Moreover, the system helps save water by automatically controlling the water valve in based on the water information supplied.

Introduction

According to statistics published by the Taiwan Fisheries Agency, fishery production at freshwater fish farms in Taiwan reached 259,175 tons in 2018, with an output value of up to NT$31.7 billion, where the area covered by aquaculture activities was 33,594.27 hectares.

However, extreme climate events have become increasingly frequent in recent years, including high temperatures, heat waves, short-term heavy rainfall, cold air masses and other meteorological conditions, which have increased production risks in the aquaculture industry.

In response to the energy management trend of energy efficiency and a reduction in carbon, as well as a reduction in industrial losses caused by natural disasters, the government has been encouraging fish farmers to utilize multiple forms of renewable energy, for example, solar energy or wind power. With the assistance of these new sources of energy, fish farmers are able to reduce their dependence on traditional electrical power. 

Additionally, the government is also motivating fish farmers to implement IoT technology to build intelligent systems for smart farming, remote monitoring, and early warning. It can help the aquaculture industry to increase the ability to face production risks, to enhance the production capacity, and reduce production costs. Finally, the aquaculture may step toward digitalization and ensure sustainability.

An ICP DAS smart aquaculture solution that saves water cost and maintains a constant temperature

In this scenario, the power was generated by the sun and wind, and we were able to analyze the water and temperature data that captured from several sensors.
In addition to data acquisition, we introduced industrial automation to the fish pond in order to analyze the benefits of power efficiency, water reduction, bait feeding, and protection from the cold.

Since the fish pond is at a large distance from the central control room, ZigBee wireless transmission, various I/O modules and communication converters were therefore employed so that we could integrate various equipment. The following is the system diagram:

Data acquisition for power generation and electricity consumption information

The power meters here can measure the power consumption from the solar panels and wind turbines. Power consumption data from the automatic bait feeding machine as well as a water heater can therefore be acquired. The data for the power generation and the power consumption was then transmitted back to the central server through the wireless transmission modules.

The wireless communication modules we used here were the ZT-2551 (slave) and the ZT-2550 (host) ZigBee devices. The former was connected to an electricity meter via the RS-485 interface, which is a communication port that measures the power generation, while the latter, situated in a control room, communicated together wirelessly. The server in the central control room is responsible for reading and storing the data for the voltage, electric current, power into the database, together with other power generation and consumption information.

Acquisition of water information meteorological data

A water quality sensor were set in the fish pond to acquire data related to the water temperature, luminance, oxidation-reduction potential (ORP), dissolved oxygen (DO), electrical conductivity (EC), pH value, and NH4, etc. A meteorological instrument can acquire the data of air pressure, luminance, humidity, temperature, rainfall, wind direction, strength of sudden gusts and wind speed, etc. Those data mentioned above were transmitted to the central control room via ZigBee wireless communication, with the values consequently stored in the database.

System logic setting and control

While collecting the data, the logic setting of systems control the on-site devices based on statistics as well. Consequently, we installed two types of remote I/O module, the tM-P4C4 and the tM-DA1P1R1. In addition, we connected the signals from the field devices so that we could make it possible to perform remote operation far from a central control room. This means that if the air or water temperature decreases to below a pre-configured level, the system will automatically turn on the water heater until the water temperature increases to the level required for the fish to survive. In contrast, if the water temperature is too high, a butterfly valve will be automatically opened, as well as starting an air blower to cool down the water temperature.

Additionally, the operators of the fish pond are able to control the bait feeder to regularly feed the fish based on a pre-determined schedule or on the weight of the fish. In general, the operators are able to control the amount, interval and frequency of feeding.

Alarm System

In this system, the operators of the fish pond are able to configure upper and lower limits for parameters such as power consumption, water temperature, pH value, and DO, etc. The system will issue an alarm if the value is higher or lower than that configured for the parameter. Additionally, the operators can examine historical data related to previous warnings.

Supports Data Export from Excel

Fish pond operators are able to search for data based on the date they are seeking, which can then be exported as an Excel report that can be used for fish pond management analysis.

Local and remote real-time data browsing

We use InduSoft, SCADA software to integrate all the devices, and provide real-time data and trend graphs that our users situated in a remote location can view by browsing a webpage.

Fish pond: On-site data browsing and control

We installed VPD-173 HMI series at the fish pond. The operators of the fish pond are consequently able to manually verify the real-time data from each heater, bait feeder, and water valve.

Benefits Provided to this Project by Implementing the ICP DAS Solution

  • The ICP DAS smart aquaculture solution has functions that include smart aquaculture and remote monitoring, together with an early warning system, and edge computing, which improve the ability of those involved in the aquaculture industry to assess and solve issues in the face of production risks, enabling them to progress toward digitalization and sustainable development.
  • The ZigBee wireless communication module is able to convert RS-485 serial communication to wireless signals, which solves the time consumed in the wiring process, from central control room to the fish pond, and the time that we implemented in this project.

Conclusion

After completing and implementing the installation of the smart aquaculture system in the Fisheries Research Center, the resulting efficiency of the solar energy and the wind power reduced electricity costs for a single user by around NT$20,000 a year based on an analysis of the data we collected. Furthermore, the system is able to automatically control the water valve based on the water information, so there is no need to keep a continuous inflow while the water quality is normal. Therefore, the water could be saved and the times of underground water extraction will be lowered.

To prevent damage from the cold, the system is able to automatically control a water heater during winter. To achieve the goal of water and energy efficiency, these devices are able to detect whether to continue heating or allow the inflow of cooler water based on the increase in water temperature.


ICP DAS has the experience to provide smart solutions in different fields. Our versatile product lines, ranging from the application layer to the sensor layer, are able to be applied to a wide range of different scenarios. ICP DAS also employs an excellent R & D team and professional service personnel to provide customers with the easy-to-use products and the most suitable solutions.

Related Products

tGW-715
VPD-173N
ZT-2550 (ZigBee Coordinator)
ZT-2551 (ZigBee Router)
tM-P4C4
tM-DA1P1R1

ICP DAS View All

ICP DAS was established in 1993 and strongly focuses on innovation and the enhancement of industrial automation technology. ICP DAS continuously endeavors to develop a comprehensive selection of products ranging from remote I/O controllers, distributed I/O modules, I/O data acquisition boards, programmable automation controllers, industrial communication modules, web-related products, motion control systems, SCADA/HMI software to automation solutions for applications critical to energy management, motion automation, smart factories, intelligent buildings, and smart cities. Our ambition is to provide a wide range of high-quality products and versatile applications, together with prompt and efficient services, that can be implemented to assist in the continued success of our clients worldwide.

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