We are very excited to announce the official Kick-Off of the AquaDetector Project (Science and Technology Cooperation Sino-Malta Fund) between AquaBioTech Group and Chinese partners China Agricultural University and MingBo Aquatic Ltd. The ceremony this morning was attended by our honored guests from Malta Council for Science and Technology and MOST and representatives from the three partners. We are anticipating a fruitful collaboration!
Malta and China have a history of collaborative research going back to 2022 and in 2018 Malta and China signed the Belt and Road Initiative (formerly known as the ‘One Belt One Road’) agreement to further support collaborative trading, cultural and research activities between the two countries.
The AquaDetector project aims to develop precise detection technologies to visualise water quality distribution, classify fish stress behaviours, and analyse the combined impact of environmental factors on juvenile grouper and trout as reference fish. Histology, biochemistry, and growth will be the three main factors analysed, reflecting fish quality, animal welfare, and production respectively. The coupling correlation model developed will be integrated into a monitoring system in order to achieve smart high-precision detection in RAS.
These innovations will help to further progress Aquaculture in both China and in Malta and promote research collaboration between researchers in the two countries.
Objectives of AquaDetector
- Using juvenile grouper and trout as reference fish, identify knowledge gaps in RAS fish quality, animal welfare and production and develop and integrated smart detection system to address these gaps
- Develop precise detection technologies to visualise the water quality distribution and classify fish stress behaviour integrated into a monitoring system to provide for the future development of automated RAS production
- Intensify scientific collaboration between Chinese and Maltese entities to strengthen R&D activities, technology transfer and to carry out comprehensive, steady, and long-term cooperation
Our role in the AquaDetector Project
- Assess how stress caused by temperature, varying concentration of dissolved oxygen and CO2, and flow rate, affects the growth, biomass, feeding, oxygen consumption, and physical characteristics of juvenile trout in RAS
- Validate CFD models of temperature, dissolved oxygen and CO2 in our facility and develop image detection technologies to visualise the water quality distribution
- Classify fish stress behaviours using video image analysis under varying production parameters, and support the integration of data into a monitoring system to further automate RAS production
- Disseminate the project results to European stakeholders
- Identify future collaboration between Chinese and Maltese entities to strengthen R&D activities and technology transfer