With the Project:
A Smart and Energy-efficient Aquaponics Greenhouse to Promote Sustainable Farming in the Sultanate of Oman
Smart and energy-efficient aquaponics systems are cost-effective and environmentally sound for local communities in arid regions like in parts of Oman. This project demonstrates how engineering methods and innovations can be applied to the agricultural and fisheries sectors and at the same time increase the socio-economic development of Oman.
Oman and other countries in arid regions are facing several challenges in ensuring food security due to soil with low fertility, inadequate irrigation systems, a lack of water and extreme weather conditions which all causes difficulties in raising crops. However, the utilisation of inexpensive energy sources, a lowered need for water, organic fertilisers from fish waste and natural bio-filters from plant roots reduce the operational cost in the agricultural sector.
In order to solve the issue of persistent unfavourable conditions that hinder the growth of crops in Oman, the project team implemented six project steps which include: the construction of an energy-efficient greenhouse, setting up an solar energy conversion system and inverter module, the implementation of a control and monitoring system using microcontrollers interfaced with sensors and actuators, the construction of a the water recirculation system, the design of cooling and heating systems for the greenhouse and also a quasi-modular and easy-to-duplicate structure.
This project promotes sustainable agriculture and demonstrates how engineering innovations applied to the agricultural and fisheries sectors can lead to socio-economic development. Technical innovations have been included in the solar power conversion system to supply power for agricultural use. The utilisation of a mechanical evaporative cooling system decreases the temperature of the greenhouse.
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