Design approach of an aquaculture cage system for deployment in the constructed channel flow environments of a power plant

PLoS One. 2018 Jun 13;13(6):e0198826. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0198826. eCollection 2018.


This study provides an engineering approach for designing an aquaculture cage system for use in constructed channel flow environments. As sustainable aquaculture has grown globally, many novel techniques have been introduced such as those implemented in the global Atlantic salmon industry. The advent of several highly sophisticated analysis software systems enables the development of such novel engineering techniques. These software systems commonly include three-dimensional (3D) drafting, computational fluid dynamics, and finite element analysis. In this study, a combination of these analysis tools is applied to evaluate a conceptual aquaculture system for potential deployment in a power plant effluent channel. The channel is supposedly clean; however, it includes elevated water temperatures and strong currents. The first portion of the analysis includes the design of a fish cage system with specific net solidities using 3D drafting techniques. Computational fluid dynamics is then applied to evaluate the flow reduction through the system from the previously generated solid models. Implementing the same solid models, a finite element analysis is performed on the critical components to assess the material stresses produced by the drag force loads that are calculated from the fluid velocities.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Aquaculture / instrumentation
  • Aquaculture / methods*
  • Equipment Design*
  • Finite Element Analysis
  • Fishes / physiology
  • Power Plants

Grants and funding

This study was financially supported by Korea East-West Power Co., Ltd. (2014-0300) to Taeho Kim. The funder had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.