Indonesia is ranked in the top 3 as the largest fish-producing country in the world, after China and India. However, the Balitbang of the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries explained that per capita fish consumption in Indonesia has only reached 25.77 kg. This figure is relatively low when compared to other countries, where one of the causes of the low consumption of fish is the price which is still relatively high. This high price is due to the lack of efficient technology and methods of freshwater fish farming currently used. So far, most aquaculture in Indonesia is still using traditional methods, where these methods have several weaknesses, including dependence on the ability of cultivators. If cultivators do not have adequate capabilities, the possibility of crop failure will increase. Weather and water quality are also determining success in freshwater fish farming.
A breakthrough in managing effective freshwater fish aquaculture is essential. However, automatic feeding and a water system are mostly available as separate utilities with low efficiency. Therefore, the UNY student team consists of Danang Pradana (Sociological Education), Qurotunnisa Nur Aini (Educational Technology), and Luthfan Ihtisyamuddin (Informatics Engineering Education) innovated product development tools for managing freshwater fish farming ponds integrated with the Internet of Things (IoT) called Ocula.
“Ocula has two main functions: pond water management and automatic fish feed management. For the water system feature, Ocula is equipped with an aerator consisting of 4 sensors, namely oxygen, temperature, pH, and water turbidity sensors," said Danang Pradana on June 29, 2022.
These sensors allow users to read pool water conditions and perform actions automatically through a remote control integrated with the Internet of Things. In addition, this feature is also equipped with a water flow setting that allows Ocula users to perform automatic adjustments when there is a change in water flow. As for feed management, Ocula makes it easy for users or cultivators to adjust both the feeding position, the distance of feed ejection, the volume of feed that is adjusted to the age of the fish, and the feeding schedule.
Qurotunnisa Nur Aini added that the system developed for Ocula products is based on an integrated microcontroller with the Internet of Things that can be controlled remotely. This feature aims to make the management of freshwater aquaculture more efficient without having to check and maintain manually. Ocula can be controlled remotely via the Ocula Assistant app. This application can also provide reports for one month after use. With monthly reports, users can monitor the ups and downs of water conditions and analyze the causes and solutions. The system will read the conditions in the pool and then send the pool condition data as a notification to the user.
Luthfan Ihtisyamuddin explained that the first advantage of this product has a water condition detector system that can be monitored remotely via the Internet of Things. "Secondly, after identifying the conditions, Ocula can adjust the pond conditions according to the needs of the fish," he said. This pool water detector is designed with a combination of 4 sensors: temperature sensors, pH, oxygen levels, and water turbidity. In its application, these four sensors can be calibrated according to the type of fish cultivated via a smartphone. They can be set whether to be handled automatically or manually when water conditions are below or above the previously set standard. The four sensors are combined with an aerator that is specially designed so that it is more efficient in structuring the place. This aerator can also control the pH of the pool water by adding natural chemical compounds to the pool. This aerator can also control the temperature. If the temperature is above or below the predetermined standard, the temperature will be controlled automatically.
Ocula, as one of the innovative works of UNY students, has the potential to support a sustainable freshwater fish production process. With the support of Ocula and the Ocula Assistant application, several problems related to fish mortality rate, feeding effectiveness and water quality management can be solved effectively. This work has received funding from the National Research and Innovation Agency through the Technology-Based Startup Company Candidate Program. (Dedy, Tj. Lak)