Rapid Seeding Spool
Inventors: Robin Littlefield, David Bailey, Ben Weiss
Overview: With the growth of seaweed farms worldwide, new technology and methods are needed to reduce operating expenses to reduce the risks associated with mariculture farms. One of the most significant costs to farms is labor, required in almost every growing process, including seeding. Traditional methods utilized crewed boats to wrap seeded lines around the grow lines manually. This can be very time-consuming and expensive, as the process is repeated for each grow line on the farm. Implementing an autonomous method for seeding grow lines can significantly improve farm processes and help reduce operational costs; engineers at WHOI have developed a new method to do just that.
Technology: The Rapid Seeding Spool is effectively designed to reduce operation and labor costs in maricultural farming. The spool uses two thrusters to propel and evenly rotate around the seed string at a specified number of wraps per distance. The seeding can be done underwater and reduces the time seed spools spend in the air; this reduces the time of exposure to the elements and can increase seedling survival. Multiple units can be used to further increase farm seeding efficiency.
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