CAMPBELL RIVER B.C. – What is being touted as the largest and most technologically advanced vessel to ever serve the Canadian aquaculture industry is now in the waters off of northeast Vancouver Island.

Built by a specialized shipyard in Europe, Mowi Canada West’s Aqua Tromoy is a wellboat with three times the capacity of any existing vessel, and will be used for moving fish from site to site and to provide environmentally friendly fish health treatments.

“This vessel is on the cutting edge of aquaculture technology and is a crucially important tool in our integrated pest management strategy allowing treatment with both freshwater bath and hydrogen peroxide, two sea lice treatment methods encouraged by the Aquaculture Stewardship Council,” Mowi Canada West Managing Director Dr. Diane Morrison said, in a release.

“Aqua Tromoy dramatically enhances Mowi Canada West’s ability to proactively manage our fish health in an environmentally friendly manner.”

The vessel is 77-metres long and has a 15-metre breadth, and can hold a capacity for 3,000 cubic meters of water.

According to the release, onboard reverse osmosis systems that can generate up to 6,000 cubic metres of fresh water from sea water will fill the holds in 24 hours.

Atlantic salmon are lifted aboard from farm pens and immersed in the fresh water, which is harmless to the fish, but removes sea lice and other salt water microbes and parasites that do not tolerate low-salinity water well.

Fine filters then remove parasites from the water before it is re-introduced to the ocean.

“Aqua Tromoy exemplifies Mowi’s commitment to world leading sustainable practices for salmon aquaculture in British Columbia,” said Dr. Morrison. “Having a vessel with triple the capacity to our current largest vessel will be a game-changer for our business.”

Aqua Tromoy was built by Arctic Shipping, delivered to DESS Aquaculture Shipping in November, and comes equipped with the latest in water quality technology.

On-board water treatment process includes oxygen generation, carbon dioxide (CO2) stripping, ozone and UV treatment of water.

It is powered by four 1440 kWe diesel generators. The advanced IMO Tier III engines uses urea to reduce nitrogen oxide pollutants in exhaust gases.

A highly trained crew of nine people will live aboard the vessel each shift, providing 24-hour service for Mowi’s farming operations.