Technological watch

Design and Test of an Efficient Automatic Clip Seedling System for Raft Aquaculture Kelp

Kelp, as a kind of climate-friendly food, animal feed, and bioplastics material, has been gradually cultivated worldwide. In the process of kelp culture, clipping seedling operation is essential to guarantee the yield. Traditionally, the clipping seedling operation is conducted by hand with low production efficiency and high labor intensity. In this paper, a novel automatic clipping seedling machine is developed to improve efficiency. The machine consists of an automatic seedling clipping core device, an automatic seedling feeding device, an automatic seedling rope conveyor, and an automatic product storage device. The corresponding structure, mechanism, and control system are introduced and analyzed. The performances of the automatic machine are tested and compared to manual kelp seedling clipping. Compared to manual kelp seedling clipping, the automatic machine can improve efficiency by 35%. Additionally, the quality of kelp seedling clipping is investigated. The attaching force of the kelp seedling clipped by the automatic machine is 2.179 N (224.4 g × 9.8 N/Kg × 10−3). The rate of the clipped kelp seedlings falling off the rope is only 1.3%. These performances prove that the automatic machine Is feasible and can be used to improve clipping efficiency and ensure clipping quality at the same time.

Publication date: 04/12/2023

Author: Ye Zhu

Reference: doi: 10.3390/jmse11122301

MDPI (jmse)


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870292.