Large Scale Aquaponics Systems

We plan aquaponic systems based on the latest research. Since we are active in aquaponic research with several universities, we jointly develop modules and research systems in order to further improve already efficient aquaponic systems or to expand their nutrient cycles.

On the basis of state-of-the-art aquaculture, hydroponics and greenhouse technology, we were involved in the development of further modules as part of research projects. These increase efficiency even further, which leads to higher yields and is also reflected in profitability.

In contrast to small aquaponic systems, for example for self-sufficiency, we assume that farmers and operators of biogas systems should have a size of approx. 3,000 square meters or more for reasons of profitability. A high degree of automation and optimized processes are also possible with these systems. This in turn can contribute to quality assurance and further increase profitability. The combination of cultures in the aquaponic facility creates added value through real, measurable synergies. In addition to the favorable filtering of the water, this consists of the double benefit of the fish feed, which not only feeds the fish but (indirectly) also the plants. The possibilities are not yet exhausted.

Decoupled Aquaponics Systems (DAPS)

Decoupled aquaponic systems have been known for a long time. It is characteristic that nutrient-rich process water leaves the fish cycle and is transferred to the hydroponic cycle. In this way, micronutrients can be supplemented and the fish and plant cultures can be operated in the pH range that is optimal for the culture. We already wrote a blog article on this.

Decoupled aquaponic system (DAPS) with anaerobic level via UASB / EGSB (below) and nutrient concentration (above)

Further loops

After decoupling into two cycles, we are now building multi-loop aquaponic systems based on the DAPS. These use other cycles that are interlinked with aquaponics. For example, for the production of fish feed such as insects or zooplankton. Or in the form of a (dendrobena) worm culture for optimizing plant nutrients. Anaerobic water treatment is another loop in the multiloop aquaponics system.

Hydroponik-Teil in Aquaponik-Großanlage
Aquaponik-Anlage Pflanzenteil
Grundriss Aquaponik-Großanlage
Aquaponics facility floor plan

Mineralization through anaerobic water treatment

As in our our blog article described, we have developed anaerobic UASB / EGSB bioreactors for several universities. They make it possible to convert substances that are only broken down in anaerobic processes. In this way, the proportion of solids in the form of filter sludge can be reduced by up to 90%. The anaerobic process e.g. also dissolved fats.

UASB/EGSB-Reaktorset für die Aufmineralisierung des Prozesswassers
Schematic representation, left UASB, right EGSB bioreactor

Concentration of the process water

In addition to the anaerobic conversion of the metabolic products, there is also the option of concentrating nutrients in the aquaponics system. The concentration of the nutrients is adjusted to the exact target value of the plant culture. This process takes place via a reverse desalination process, which e.g. can be achieved via evaporation or reverse osmosis.

Use of secondary raw materials

Due to the existing aquaponics circuit, it is worthwhile in many cases to operate additional circuits, e.g. for the use of secondary raw materials, such as green waste or sewage sludge. As a further synergy, there can be a production of insects or zooplankton. All the more profitable, especially in large systems: They in turn form the basis for the in-house production of fish feed. In this context we are currently taking part in the research project "CLOSE THE LOOP", about which we wrote here in our blog article.

Waste heat or concepts for biogas plants

Another possible symbiosis is the use of existing waste heat. This means that the greenhouse can e.g. be heated via heat exchangers.

For biogas plant operators who want to use the generated heat, there are further synergy effects. Secondary raw materials such as cuttings, roots or sewage sludge can in turn be used as substrates for the biogas plant. If there is enough space available for a greenhouse, the system can be dimensioned to exactly match the requirements. We would be happy to discuss the options for your planned location with you.

For interested parties: Your individual feasibility study

If you want to build such a large-scale aquaponics facility, or are part of the planning team with this intention:

In the form of our feasibility studies, we offer a solid basis for an investment decision and thus also the preliminary planning for the Aquponik project. In addition to the location consideration, based on your specific requirements with regard to desired crops, etc., it also includes the calculation of the system parameters, the investment u. Operating cost. Upon request, we can also help our customers to set up a functioning marketing and sales concept. Including framework data for financing, debt servicing within your specified framework. Gladly also in consultation with your tax advisor.

Aquaponics project workshop

Optionally, we organize a workshop at the end of the first half of the project, which serves to define the strategy and framework parameters for the system simulation and the sales strategy. Then the complete system is calculated and the financing and profitability part is worked out. As a rule, a one-day workshop is sufficient, but we are flexible here and can focus entirely on our customers and their project scope.

Final report

All this knowledge about the project will be collected in a final report. On the basis of this preliminary planning, the final report is an optimal starting point for a start in the implementation. The aquaponic system is already very precisely defined and offers the best prerequisites for rapid detailed system planning.  

UASB/EGSB-Reaktorset für die Aufmineralisierung des Prozesswassers
UASB / EGSB reactor set for experimental series

Research Systems

Since we can precisely calculate all modules in terms of size, proportions and nutrient processing and design all components accordingly, we are also able to build tailor-made modules and systems for experimental or research purposes. Depending on the requirement profile, your research facility can be universal or very specific.

Would you like your aquaponics system to be universal or specific?

In addition to specific specifications, we can also offer a very universal aquaponic system for research purposes? In addition to individual modules, e.g. Bioreaktoren we can also create systems that are specifically developed for specific issues. This also applies to individual modules in experimental series or otherwise atypical systems, such as seawater aquaponics.

Or aquaponics optimized for certain cultures, e.g. also crayfish or for mollusks.

Our universal research facility

Should a project not focus on specific cultures but on nutrient exchange, we have developed a research facility to which different cultures can be connected. At its core, it has an aquaculture system, a filter section (drum filter, MBBR) and other modules (heating, ventilation, etc.). However, there are different options and cultivation methods for fish and plant culture.

In addition to the fish tank, up to 3 other cultures can be connected to the existing system as nutrient producers. I.e. these modules are also processed by the system. This means that the system is capable of polyculture, for example to cultivate it separately from the fish tank, for example as invertebrates in a cycle. Without the cultures being able to affect each other. The hydroponics can also be expanded with 12 outlets. Depending on the connected cultures, the biofilter volume can also be expanded.

Universelle Aquaponik-Forschungsanlage für die Forschung an der Aquaponik
Universal research facility - 3D planning view
Foto der universellen Aquaponik-Forschungsanlage
Universal research facility - photography after completion
Universelle Aquaponik-Forschungsanlage
Forschungsanlage 3D-Ansicht
Aquaponik-Anlage in Form einer universellen Forschungsanlage
3.000l Forschungsanlage Foto

Systems for end users

We don't have our own offer for this area yet, but we still have a hint. We are currently planning a system for end users that should be simple, robust and universally applicable. In addition, the system should also be scalable within a certain framework.

The leading partner here is our partner company that has been friends for many years"Lets grow"More about it here soon.