The role of wellboats in the aquaculture industry has been crucial as it serves as a bridge between on-shore and off-shore aquaculture facilities. However, their versatility comes with several challenges, the biggest one ensuring biosecurity for both process and discharge water. This has led the veterinarians and farmers to determine that the most optimal solution is the closed system wellboat – due to safety and increasingly stricter regulations for disease control in inside and outside environments. One of the most affected areas is the treatment of intake water, which then becomes a preference. This is due to multiple bacteria, viruses and sea lice being released back into the marine environment during the discharge stage of the transport water.
Even though there are designated locations for this process – there is no method to ensure that it doesn’t cross-contaminate. It also possesses a threat to other wellboats intaking the new water in potentially nearby areas. The challenge is that after treating intake water, dangerous microorganisms can still enter the closed system through “dead volume” water that cannot be fully reached during standard cleaning operation such as pumps, pipes, or complex technical equipment. The most difficult, yet ultimate solution is ensuring that the intake and process water passing through piping and the entire system has the highest possible standard or has just enough microorganisms to develop or sustain the immunity of the fish transported.
UV disinfection has been widely implemented in the wellboat industry. Mainly due to not influencing the key water properties in the aquaculture industry – temperature and pH or oxygen levels and effectiveness on the common bacterial and viral diseases. It is also easily implemented in different steps of the wellboat whether it is water inlet, outlet, or process areas. Finally, it offers its users the most optimal APEX and OPEX compared to other alternatives as well as having the lowest footprint which is essential in smaller spaces.