The South Texas Shrimp Farm is a large-scale land-based commercial Recirculating Aquaculture System (RAS) that focuses on the production of Penaeus vannamei (Pacific white shrimp). Comprised of four quarter-mile-long modules, and housing over 32 million gallons of production water, it is one of the world’s largest RAS facilities ever constructed. Their proprietary production technology was developed around a modular bio-secure system that requires no chemical or antibiotic additives and uses bio-floc technology to reduce feed costs, enhance water quality, and accelerate growth rates.
The South Texas Shrimp Farm underwent a major initiative to modernize its facilities with two key areas of improvement in mind:
- The need to move away from the traditional combination of regenerative blowers and paddlewheel-driven aeration technology in an attempt to increase dissolved oxygen levels, reduce power consumption, eliminate equipment failures, and reduce manpower dedicated to monitoring and maintenance.
- Develop a more cost-effective heating solution to combat seasonal temperature swings and allow for more consistent year-round production.
Due to the unique nature of the system, and the high oxygen demands of biofloc culture, MDM was contracted to design and develop a custom aeration system designed around centralized control skids that could be located outside of the production modules. The system MDM developed was comprised of Genesys 3×2-6 Pumps connected to South Texas Shrimp Farm’s proprietary jet aspirators, controlled by external VFDs with integrated dissolved oxygen probes. Trials were run with temporary installments on several production tanks to refine the system. Once the systems were dialed in, they were then upgraded to prefabricated, plug-and-play units and installed on all production modules. The result was a reliable, energy-efficient system that allows Texas Shrimp Farm staff the ability to monitor and control their system remotely while eliminating all mechanical equipment from inside their culture tanks and modules.
The second phase of the initiative, developing a more cost-effective heating solution, was designed and installed by Delta Hydronics, LLC, a company specializing in aquatic heating and cooling solutions. This involved the installation of multiple 8,000,000 BTU LNG fired boiler systems, feeding a half-mile closed loop system, that supplied heat via titanium heat exchangers located in each culture tank. Water was circulated throughout the system with MDMs Advance 4000 pumps and the addition of Advance 1000 pumps used as boosters at each heat-exchanger input point. Since the completion of this project, the South Texas Shrimp Farm has improved its year-round production capabilities without having to sacrifice growth and survival during the cold winter months.