This paper describes the concept of Aquaponics, including a brief history of its development and its place within the larger category of soil-less culture which is or else called Modern agriculture. The Aquaponics system refers to the system that chains conventional aquaculture with hydroponics in a symbiotic environment. In normal aquaculture, excretions from the animals being raised can accumulate in the water, increasing harmfulness.
In an aquaponics system, water from an aquaculture system is nourished to a hydroponic system where the by-products are broken down initially into nitrites and consequently into nitrates by nitrifying bacteria, which are consumed by the plants as nutrients, and the water is then recirculated back to the aquaculture system.
The proposed Aquaponics system is based on food growth in Hydroponics and using Aquafarming techniques. The proposed system collects data acquired by the device and gives alerts by sending messages and activating the buzzer.
The project contains the idea to develop the aquaponics system which concentrates on the development of agriculture which is also suitable for urban cities and non-arable areas where there is sufficient space. This system started with household development, as a small-scale aquaponics system. The cultivated organic vegetables having rich nutrients and are ammonia-free which is sufficient for plants growth (Kloas et al., 2015).
In this proposal, we mainly concentrate on pH sensor, Dissolved oxygen probe, and Electricalconductivity sensor to maintain the healthy life for the organisms present in the system (i.e., fishes and plants). pH sensor is a determinant value depending on described scale value, similar to temperature.
The pH level of water is measured with a log scale which is not a physical quantity. The scale ranges from the value 0-14, with a neutral value of 7. The lower range 0-7 is acidic and 8-14 is base. “pH” stands for “power of Hydrogen”; the value is determined by the effect of H+ ions and OH- ions (Nishimura et al., 2016);( Domingues et al., 2012).
Managing the aquaponics system is quite difficult because three different organisms require different pH values. Plants, fishes and bacteria, each have different pH values, so it is difficult to maintain the system in an ideal range. Fish prefers base, whereas plants prefer an acidic environment. This concludes most of the aquaponics system falls in a pH range of 6.5-7.5 which is common for plants and fishes.
Water is not just a mixture of nutrients, minerals, and water. There are plenty of requirements needed for plants, fishes, and bacteria in an Aquaponics system (Gutierrez-Wing & Malone, 2006); (Rakocy, 2012); (Aishwarya et al., 2018).
- The important nutrient is Dissolved Oxygen, required for Fish respiration
- Plants respiration, helps for nutrient uptake and strengthen the root system
- Bacteria exhales nitrification and respiration
This project is mainly implemented to produce healthy growth for fishes and plants which is consistently verified using LCD display and using alert messages. This system helps the aquaponics system to grow faster and healthier without any added chemicals and pesticides (Changmai et al., 2018);( Castillo-Castellanos et al., 2016);( Schmautz et al., 2016).
The sensors are connected to the microcomputer which senses the environment and transmits the sensed data to raspberry pi3 (Kushiro et al., 2003);(Ramlee et al., 2013). The appropriate results are got and the parameters are controlled with the help of motors to maintain the anticipated environment for the plants to grow (Espinosa Moya et al., 2016);(Lennard, 2012);(Cronin et al., 2016). The benefits of the work are:
- Effective and efficient food production system
- Reduction in usage of water level
- Two agriculture products fishes and vegetables are produced thus eco-system is balanced
- Plants growth will be significantly faster
- It is purely organic
- More crops are cultivated in less space
- Can be used in non-arable land such as deserts, islands, etc.
Aquaponics is the best system of agriculture for growing organic vegetables in crowded cities and non-arable lands. And this does not require much water and space. This system especially stands as an eco-friendly technology where it could be improvised at an individual’s pattern of usage. The adequate amount of dissolved oxygen and pH is continuously monitored and displayed. So there will be Healthy growth in both fish and plants.
Future modifications can also be included by the following technologies as Image processing, Data Logging, and Data analytics. This system works without any chemical pesticides and fertilizers with regard to future expansion and development, the internet of things will be the better solution especially with regard to flexibility.
Source: Rangeetha, S. (2021). Advanced Aquaponics Monitoring System Using Raspberry Pi3. Turkish Journal of Computer and Mathematics Education (TURCOMAT), 12(9), 2528-2533.
Useful Article: Intelligent Aquaponic Information Management To Maximize Mutual Benefit