This tool visually follows biomass development every day

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Now one can follow a salmon’s evolution in real-time.

The video shows silvery salmon, marked with coloured data points, swimming in cages. He shows how biomass, measured by weight per individual, develops per day.

The startup company Optoscale has developed an optical biomass meter to measure the size of the fish when it is in the sea.

The tech company uses artificial intelligence to do so.

“To put it simply; we can measure one fish and we can measure many fish,” said CEO Sven J. Kolstø who heads the company.

Innovation
He represents one of the many start-up companies that, according to DNB director Dag Sletmo, drives innovation in the aquaculture industry.

“We will now focus on fish health, fish welfare and lice counting, so 2020 will be a very exciting year for us,” he added.

Trial runs: the BioScope in use reading biomass

The companies have nine customers, of which SalMar has been particularly important, and “a few thousand units in the sea”.

“Customers usually put it in the sea two weeks before harvest,” Kolstø said during Tekna’s autumn conference in Bergen on Thursday.

Lots of data
Based on the video images and biomass measurements, OptScale can calculate fish weight down to one gram, growth per day, feed consumption and growth rates.

“You get a lot of data,” he said eagerly. “During the period, we may have measured 100,000 salmon. But it is more interesting if you follow the fish for longer. One would like to think that the biomass is normally distributed, but this is not always the case”.

Kolstø certainly believes there is a lot of money to save for the salmon farmers by using real-time biomass measurements.

“I should not be so cocky, but I think it is possible to make salmon grow faster if you know more,” he said, pointing out, for example, that one can see significantly higher growth rates between different cages.