Methodology

SMART is designed to provide a set of user-friendly services both to aqua farmers and regulators, who need to allocate or reallocate areas for aquaculture on the basis of a science-based Ecosystem Approach to Aquaculture and/or to monitor in a cost effective way water quality in leased areas. In particular (but into exhaustively, since they will be adapted to consolidated end-users requirements) the objectives are:

  • To provide Near Real Time (NRT) distribution of water quality variables, such as chlorophyll a, water transparency, turbidity, wave heights, sea surface temperature;
  • To estimate the risk of fecal bacterial contamination, based on the spatial distribution of river plumes and cages effluent plume ;
  • To provide short term forecasting of shellfish growth rate, based on the above NRT data and on site-specific climatology.

Thanks to new algorithms for Particulate Organic Carbon (POC) retrieval, new capabilities offered by exploitation of Sentinel-2, potentially in combination with Sentinel-3, and the very recent (but embryonic) dynamics in users awareness triggered by R&D projects, SMART is targeting three levels of novelties:

  • 1 - Support to site locations optimization and environmental monitoring (all sites)
  • 2 - Quantification of carrying capacity based on time series and statistics from EO and using the POC estimates (Algerian and Italian sites)
  • 3 - Environmental impact due to farming, through detection of POC released by cages (here shrimp farms will be examined) (Vietnamese site)

These three levels of products/service improvements (which indicated a higher and higher level of sophistication) are sketched on the figure below (1st level in blue, 2nd level in orange and 3rd in green).