Artificial Mangrove Islands?
October 20, 2013 at 11:09 pm #22374
Process to create a freshwater floating Island in Ocean
The idea behind this system is to let nature do all the work. The only man made requirements are appropriately designed nets, Water Pumps, containers to fill the nets with to add buoyancy, plastic liner, and some sprinkler equipment. The floating island would first be made buoyant with ordinary plastic bottles. The bottles form a wall and roof around the freshwater which floats on top of the ocean water. This is possible because freshwater is lighter than saltwater. The Island is a freshwater aquaponics system. Fish are farmed in the freshwater cavity under the Island while the used water from the fish cages is distributed over the surface of the Island, where it is purified through a biofilter. The biofilter is the flood zone at the surface of the Island.
Around the Island is a mangrove thicket. The mangrove thicket is being constantly fed with new nutrients that come from other industries present, such as the effluent from a methane digester, which could be used for electrical generation and gas production. Nutrients could be made water soluble and distributed over a biomass of algae, and aquatic plants growing in the open ocean. A boat could harvest the biomass and deliver it to the methane digester.The mangrove thicket has the potential to actually expand the Island without adding more nets and bottles.When it rains
the freshwater will be slowed down by the mangrove thicket. The lighter weight of the freshwater will eventually push the saltwater down and out from under the island. As the mangrove thicket expands the freshwater aquaponics system in the center also expands outward.But the mangrove must be fed nutrients or it will not grow and could die.
The flood zone which floats above the freshwater is a foot or two above sea level. It is flooded regularly with fresh water but it drains well, so Worms, roots and other soil cleansers thrive, and aid in purifying the fish cage effluent which is pumped from under the Island. Holes aredesigned into the surface of the Island for access to fish cages. The surface of the Island booms in growth because of the synergy created from the cyclical nutrient system. Freshwater is pumped into storage when heavy rain occurs.
These Islands could grow or be built into any shape desired, depending on how nutrients are applied to the mangrove. They could be shaped to create a barrier against flooding, or shaped for agricultural efficiency, or designed to be moved, and so on. Since these bottles will be totally covered with soil and plants they will be protected from U.V. light and should last indefinitely.
Creating synergistic natural saltwater environments is vital to the economy of the seasted. Theopen ocean must be used as farmland. Fish-waste must be recycled effectively, perhaps using arthropods in a biodigestion tank. The nutrients from the fish-waste could be applied to saltwater crops, such as seaweed, where the water would be further freshened before being returned to the fish cages.
No nutrients should be wasted. If excess nutrients are produced, they should be applied to a mangrove, or an algae pad. The algae can be used for gas and electrical generation, while producing a byproduct of nutrients. The mangrove adds structure to the Island, and contributes to bio-filtration.
Saltwater aquaponics is a not a very explored subject. Much experimentation will need to be done to develop such a system. Much can be discovered with a saltwater aquarium. Considering the market value of seaweed and ocean fish, this could likely be a profitable endeavor, even if its land based.
The Advantages of Biomass Biomass could be the answer for sustainable and energy independent seasteads. Waste nutrients could be distributed over large swaths of ocean. Algae will consume the nutrients and multiply, even doubling their mass every 24 hours. Algae biomass will be used in a gasifier tolerant of the salty conditions. The waste Carbon Dioxide and nutrients will be applied back into the mass of living algae. This creates a synergistic system. Fuel crops for gasification would need to be produced on land for a while, then brought to the seastead. The electricity would be sold to industries and residents. As fuel crops are imported and gasified, the waste left after gasification adds to the nutrient mass of the seastead. Consider the ocean your roof.The biomass is your solar panel. More nutrients in the cycle means more square feet of ocean claimed by living biomass.The more square feet of living biomass the more light gets used for energy, which means more feed for the gasifier and more mass for the Island. Is it feasible? What do you think?
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