The overall aim of the ARGENTEA project is to research, develop and demonstrate a new fish pump for humane handling of live Atlantic salmon over 1m in length and 10kg in weight. The outcome will be a pump that can be used in routine handling operations during grow-out on salmon sea farms for sea lice treatment, grading and for transfer to the processing plant. ARGENTEA will cause no physical harm to salmon during handling and will not trigger the physiological stress response that impedes salmon growth and meat quality.
The ARGENTEA project consists of three key milestones/deliverables: 1) finalizing the optimized design of the ARGENTEA to establish the ideal dimensions and functional parameters of the pump; 2) carrying out prototype testing and measure for biochemical markers of stress - lactate, glucose, pH, cortisol, for changes in behavior and feeding habits 3) Data from testing ARGENTEA to show the biochemical, physiological, behavioral and mortality response of salmon to being handled by an Archimedes pump, its effect on meat quality and on meat processing workflows.
The project is well aligned to the EUROSTARS programme, which is designed to support research intensive SMEs with early stage high risk R&D-focused projects with a large potential market and a short route to market (< two years) which is a good characterization of this project.
Besides OxyVision AS acting as project coordinator and being involved in all work packages and the development of the future commercialization plan, the consortium will consist of: GAM Manshanden Productie BV (NL), who will lead on matters covering pump design engineering and assembly of ARGENTEA, and NOFIMA (NO), who will install our machinery at their salmon farming research facilities for measuring the effect it has on salmon welfare and stress levels. The consortium brings together all necessary expertise, covering the whole value chain to improve, validate and commercialize ARGENTEA on the international stage.