The company is a land based aquaculture farm. They breed high quality abalone in their land based farms that are sited near coastal regions in Asia. They are seeking for an automated system to inventorise their stock of abalone. Abalone is a temperate species noctural animal that spends most the day under shelter and will be active at night. This becomes a challenge for the farm when it comes to inventorising and monitoring the mortality rate of the larvae and abalone during the growth process.
The farm breeds the abalone in water tanks measuring 8m x 3m x 1,5m (length x breadth x height). Typically each tank contains water that are 1m deep. Within each tank are shelters that are in the form of 4 legged 'stool-like' structure where the abalone will take refuge under during the day. Each tank has a capacity to hold 50,000 to 100,000 pieces of the abalone larvae. At the moment, the counting is carried out by human. A worker goes to each tank and turns over the shelters in each tank to reveal the abalone which are hiding under the submerged shelters before they start counting. This is not only labour intensive but also subjected to human error. The farm is seeking for an automated solution to help to count the number of larvae in each tank.
The proposed system needs to be able to count the abalone that are in each tank, including those that are on the sides and under the shelters. Due to the large number of tanks per farms, it is not necessary for the counting system to permanently attached to the tank, It should be a portable and mobile system that can be moved from one tank to another.
Tank physical dimentions : 8m x 3m x 1.5m (LxBXH)
Each tank is filled up to 1.5m deep with pre-filtered flowing sea water.
There approximately 50 - 100 tanks in each farm
Accuracy - more than 85%
The system needs to be able to be operate in the presence of salt fog and sea water.
The system needs to be able to operate in the open. It has to account for possible interference from sunlight and changing lighting conditions.