DTU-DSC: Danish Shellfish Center


DTU Aqua has about 325 employees (full-time equivalents). The institute is organized into 10 scientific sections, which carry out the research, educational and advisory activities. DTU Aqua has employees at DTU’s campus in Lyngby and in Silkeborg, Hirtshals and Nykøbing Mors in Jutland as well as on board the research vessel Dana. DTU-AAH in Lyngby is the scientific section devoted for Fish and Shellfish Diseases while DTU-DSC is part of the Coastal Ecology section and located in Nykøbing Mors at the Danish Shellfish Centre. DTU-DSC is devoted to Sustainable Resource Utilization of lower trophic level organisms.

DTU-DSC: Danish Shellfish Center (Shellfish and macroalgae production)

Infrastructure: DTU-DSC: Danish Shellfish Center (Shellfish and macroalgae production)

Location: Nykøbing Mors, DENMARK

Web site address: https://www.aqua.dtu.dk; https://coast.dtu.dk/english/about

Contact: Camille Saurel (csau@aqua.dtu.dk), head of research group and manager of the experimental platform.


DTU-DSC offers 3800 m2 of building and lands, and off coast long-line culture units dedicated to low trophic aquaculture including shellfish, crustacean, microalgae and macroalgae production. The inland infrastructure consists of standard equipped laboratories and standalone hatchery units for research on shellfish and macroalgae, from larvae/spore to adult stage, as well as producing microalgae for shellfish production. By mid-2021 our infrastructure will be upgraded including new 750m2 hatchery and 400m2 nursery buildings. Current laboratories (275 m2) include microscopes, autoclave, water quality instruments etc., while the new laboratory (50 m2) will include autoclave, laminar flow workstation, climate chambers, etc.

There are 4 units:

1) Bivalve hatchery + micronursery

Current. Both recirculation and flow through systems. Adjustable feed supply rate via individual peristaltic pumps per tanks.

Experimental room 1 (130 m2) for flat oyster production is supplied with 1 µm filtered UV treated seawater temperature controlled. The room includes 4 x 200L and 9 x 30L broodstock tanks; 10 x 15L conical ultra-high density rearing system larvae tanks and 10 x 100L downwelling settlement sieve tanks and 20 x 100L micronursery sieve tanks. o Experimental room 2 for bivalve or crustacean production (124 m2) is supplied with 1 µm filtered UV treated seawater temperature controlled. The room includes 10 x 100L sieves tanks, and modular tank options (50-1000L) depending on needs for larvae, settlement and micronursery.

Experimental room 3 for microalgae production (30 m2), based on maximum production of 50 x 50L batch culture bags. Currently 4 microalgae strains are available all year round. System supplied with 0.2 µm filtered UV treated seawater.

2021. New Hatchery – secure area. Both recirculation and flow through systems. All room supplied with min 1 µm filtered UV treated seawater, controlled water and room temperature.

Quarantine (50 m2) with wastewater treatment UV + 0.2µm filtration

Flat oyster hatchery room (187 m2) will include 12 x 100L and 12 x 30L broodstock tanks, 40 x 15L larval tanks, 40 x 50L settlement and modular micro nursery tanks (trays, sieves…).

Experimental room (86 m2) with modular tanks adapted to all kind of bivalve experimentation

Microalgae production room (82 m2)

2) Macroalgae hatchery

Current. Climate room with constant temperature (15 m2).

Only batch systems of water (no recirculation and flow through). Water filtration down to 5 µm. Adjustable light (irradiance and day length).

The setup is not fixed and changes according to ongoing research trials.

Tank setups include conical 5, 30 or 120 l tanks with bottom aeration for oxygen and flow.

200 or 600 l batch tanks for e.g. broodstock conditioning and seaweed nursery.

Different scale trays setups are used for seeding (30 or 400 l).

Small-scale setups (flasks, beakers, small aquariums etc.) for cultures and experiments with microstages of different seaweed species.

2021. New hatchery – 53 m2 climate room.

Both batch, recirculation, and flow-through systems will be available at various experimental and production scales.

The hatchery will be supplied with 1 µm filtered UV treated seawater with the option of different water temperatures.

The infrastructure is still in the planning phase, but will consist of a range of fixed and flexible setups at various scales to cover activities of both research and production

3) Nursery unit

Current. Set of 12 raceways x 10 upwelling 80L tanks (120 tanks) with unfiltered seawater.

2021. Current building will include with unfiltered or 1µm filtered seawater + new 400m2 building with filtered seawater at 60 µm. Tank configuration as required for experiments.

4) grow-out unit

Two longline farms of 5 and 15ha. The large unit can hold 16 x 3 x 100m longlines. Spat collectors or socked mussels can be hanged at different density, as well as grow-out system for flat oysters (e.g. lanterns, trays, cages) and seaweed.

A small platform in the DSC harbor is also available for easy access grow-out experiments.

Services currently offered by the infrastructure

At DTU Aqua DSC experiments with all stages of the native flat oyster has resulted in a unique stable production of >1M spat/year attracting international PhD students and MSc students to carry out research. DTU Aqua-DSC can provide facilities for basic research on aquaculture of known aquaculture species like flat oysters, mussels (e.g. in the OYSTERECOVER and CERES projects), macroalgae (e.g. different ecotypes of Saccharina latissima and Palmaria palmata) as well as more exotic species like ascidians and lobster. DSC facilities also provide real scale production for applied research (REPROSEED, BONUS-OPTIMUS) and knowledge transfer on longline culture practice. Collaboration with the industry allows use of latest technologies, and research results to be used by business. Experiments can include breeding, larval stage up to adult size. Physiological rates (respiration, clearance, growth etc.) under different environmental conditions, as well as water quality can be measured (pH, O2, salinity, turbidity, Nitrate, Phosphate). Other analytical devices are available such as spectrophotometer, fluorometer, flowcytometer with camera.

Modality of access

Duration of work: On average each user or user group is expected to stay 5 – 84 days at the infrastructure. DTU-DSC proposes training/description of culture practice where 1 week to 3 weeks are expected. Users will be integrated in the daily routine and able to participate to all stages of production in hatchery or in the field for grow-out. For research experiments, stays are expected to be 12 weeks due to the life cycle of the produced animals. Most of accesses have to match the production season. There are 3 training accesses for macroalgae, microalgae, oyster productions in hatchery, and 1 training access for mussel longline culture (spat collectors, technologies, harvesting/socking) and grow-out production (oyster and macroalgae).

Unit of access

The unit of access is defined as one training day with access to the lab/hatchery or 1.5-2 days for experiments in the hatchery facilities. One typical training access consists of 5 units of access while one typical experimental access consists of 40 units.

Training unit of access includes access to hatchery, teaching/tutoring by technicians and academics, follow and experience daily routines with technicians.

Experiment units include advice on experimental design, setup, collection of live animals for the experiments, or larvae/spat provided by DSC. Preparatory work, acclimatization of the shellfish, macroalgae, protocols. Support for daily maintenance, use of facilities, sampling for the experiment, analyses, and use of equipment. DTU-DSC also offer support during weekends.


See More