Solar and Aquaculture Fisheries

May 13,2022

In Taiwan fish-electric symbiosis is being subsidized and promoted by the government. Land in many coastal areas has become salinized over time and is not suitable for planting crops. Combining these facts with the cooperation of local solar energy companies many aquaculture and solar hybrid farms have sprung up. 

These fish farms consist of a pond of water filled with fish, shrimp, or other aquaculture with some type of solar panel installation mounted above. There are even installations with floating barges of solar panels that float in decently sized lakes. Taiwan's flat coastal lands and climate make it the perfect location to install these types of farms.

Thus, solar fisheries combined with the wind farms dotted across the outskirts of Taiwan really paint a clear picture of a future green energy-powered island.

But there is a problem with this "picture"; the salt and contaminants like latent pesticides from the land can make their way into these ponds. Causing damage to the quality of the water and potentially harming the fish. Singform Enterprise has developed PVC, TPO, and OBC pond liner membranes to protect the fish and water quality in these hybrid electricity-generating fisheries from contamination. 

The benefits of hybrid solar aquaculture fisheries

Energy production

Obviously, these hybrid solar fisheries produce electricity. They are designed to produce more energy than the farm consumes creating an electricity surplus. This energy is provided or sold back to the power company.

Temperature stabilization from shade

Having solar panels above the fish ponds reduces exposure to sunlight. This lowers the temperature of the water creating a better environment for fish to grow in. Some fish types require cool dark waters, having lower temperatures and darker waters allow for these types of fish species to survive and are farmed.

Protection from acid rain

In certain applications, the solar panel installations act as roof reducing the amount of rainfall flowing into the ponds reducing rising pH levels and mostly eliminating flooding. These farms can also be built above ground level making them even more resistant to flooding or overflow. Flooding and overflow would cause a loss in fish stock and poor water quality. It might even cause invasive species to establish themselves in the local environment.

Reduced evaporation

Because the solar panels decrease direct sunlight from hitting the surface of the water there is less evaporation meaning less water is required to maintain the levels of the ponds.

Reclamation of unusable land

As we mentioned before much of the coastal lands has become salinated, making it unfarmable thus the land becomes unusable.

Using waterproof pond liner membranes to manage water quality

As I mentioned above there is a problem that fisheries face, that is the possibility for poor water quality. In order to maintain the health of the fish or shrimp or other aquaculture in these ponds it is essential to control the quality of water. We must manage these elements: dissolved oxygen level, pH levels, temperature, bacteria nutrients, metals, and algae.

Eliminating other factors like groundwater contamination is extremely important as we already have our hands full. Pond liners will reduce if not outright eliminate pollution by soil and groundwater. It also eliminates the soil's influence on pH values, salinity, or pollutants from existing pesticides.

Synthetic rubber like pond liners often referred to as membranes also happened to be one of the most economical ways of protecting water quality. Pond liners are nothing new having long been used in agricultural storage tanks, dams, land retention projects, water tanks, and chemical storage. But they have experienced rapid growth in aquaculture applications and sectors. 

Here are other advantages of pond membranes

  • Because it is separated from the soil layer, the water quality of the culture pond can be highly maintained. Especially in the rainy season, the scouring of the soil around the pond will also cause water pollution and turbidity, which has a particularly great impact on shrimp ponds that like clean water.

  • The waterproof membrane makes cleaning easier and can be cleaned and re-drained in about a week. The normal soil pond cleaning, drying, and re-watering, will take a month to one and a half months. The shortened time allows for more time spent in farming, resulting in higher annual productivity.

  • Suspended pollutants can be easily removed through drains, because unlike soil ponds, which may adhere to the bottom layer, they may also cause changes in water quality and pollution over time.

Waterproofing Pond Liner Membrane Options

There are many options for pond liners TPO, RDE, LLDE, PVC, HDPE, EPDM. We believe the most commonly used materials worldwide are HDPE and PVC. Since these two materials work well and offer high weather resistance, and are durable in exposed environments. The waterproof membranes of these two materials are also easy to heat and weld together, making them a commonly chosen material for construction workers.

However, In order to provide the market with the best choice of materials, Singform developed OBC pond liner membranes. The idea was to combine the features and benefits of both PVC and HDPE liners into a single-liner type. OBC combines the flexibility of TPO, the puncture resistance of HDPE, and the strength of PVC liners. OBC is specially formulated to create a high-performance material that is safe for aquaculture and environmentally friendly. Our OBC pond liners have undergone rigorous testing. Not only does OBC have the flexibility of TPO, but it also has the strength of HDPE. It can be said that OBC pond liners offer the most comprehensive performance.

At this moment, OBC is proving itself as a goto material by being used in more than ten of our material aquaculture testing ponds. A comparison between a regular fishery and a solar fishery with OBC pond liners is pictured above. This configuration is a long but narrow shrimp pond with a solar panel installation above. This is a similar scenario that many of our customers will be faced with. Not only does this prove our product it also allows controlled testing of the quality of water, the membrane itself, and the shrimp growth cycle.  By controlling the quality of the water and separating larger ponds into smaller ponds, we significantly increased harvest yields and reduced the costs of maintenance operations.



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