Document Type

Internship Report

Publication Date

Spring 2016


This project is the design, budget, and build out of a saltwater recirculating aquaculture system, featured on the Miami Science Barge. The Miami Science Barge is a nonprofit (501c3) floating environmental education platform, which is located on the waterfront of Museum Park in Downtown Miami. The Barge, which operates fully on solar energy, exhibits multiple living systems that showcase restoration, conservation, and sustainability initiatives taking place across South Florida and worldwide. The Miami Science Barge is under the administration of CappSci, a non-profit with the mission to apply science and engineering towards tackling today’s most pressing challenges. The goal of my project was to create a saltwater recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) for the grow out of marine finfish. The system is powered exclusively by solar energy. This system is a short-phase grow out tank which will be stocked in rotations with juvenile mahi mahi (Coryphanea hippurus), Florida pompano (Trachinotus carolinus), and cobia (Rachycentrodon canadum). The system is designed to maintain 25-50 kg of fish in a 4000 L system. Fish will be sourced from the University of Miami’s Experimental Hatchery (UMEH). Fish will undergo grow out in the Barge RAS for two to six months before being disposed of or returned to UMEH. The RAS must be virtually effluent free and features energy efficient technologies in order to stay within the barge’s energy budget. This system is a proof of concept design which will be used as an educational tool to teach people about the potential sustainability of recirculating aquaculture practices, as well as the role aquaculture plays in food security and marine conservation. K-12 students will learn about recirculating aquaculture systems during Miami Science Barge field trip programs and the general public will be open to view and learn about the aquaculture exhibit during evening and weekend programming.


Department: MES

MPS Track: AQU

Location: CappSci-Miami Science Barge

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