Algae Scrubber Filter

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11 May 2017 15:52 - 11 May 2017 16:48 #1 by bart (Bart Korfanty)
The idea behind this type of filtration was developed by Dr. Walter Adey.
Basically it's surface that allows algae to grow stripping the water from unwanted substances. Main aim is to remove nitrates (N03). Without going to details algae are a lot more efficient at that than higher plants, which as source of nitrogen prefer ammonia and nitrite.

The filter here is so called waterfall/box algae scrubber. There is other varieties as well. This option fits my tank best.

There is loads on the subject in internet and i'm not inventing anything new here. Just wanted to try out this type of filtration for a long time now and finally got around to do it.

The material i used to build the box was foamed PVC (5mm) and Acrylic (2mm).
Light source is 4x 10w LED chips. They are not powered fully though to prevent overheating.
Simple plumbing is gray U-PVC.
Surface for algae is made from plastic mesh used for embroidery.

So the box first. In my case 35x22x10cm. The holes are for LED chips. Inside lined with adhesive aluminium tape to add reflective surface.



Here the box finished, with acrylic glued inside and some cut outs for the pipe. There has to be hole in the bottom for water to escape as well (not shown here)

Last edit: 11 May 2017 16:48 by bart (Bart Korfanty).

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11 May 2017 16:20 #2 by Jonlate (Jon Late)
Plastic mesh that is used in embroidery, so that's your other hobby!! I knew there was something else you were up to!!

I will have to come in next time I am in Dublin to see it working. Will it be in the shop, or is it a home project

Have you started your daphnia yet?

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11 May 2017 16:34 #3 by robert (robert carter)
Hi Bart looks an interesting project would love an update in a few months

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11 May 2017 16:49 #4 by bart (Bart Korfanty)
That's how it should look inside. Mesh just hanging, being constantly washed with water coming from the slot in the pipe. The mesh should have rough surface to allow algae to attach itself. I just used coarse sanding paper.



For the light source. 4x 10w LED so called 7:2. These are COB (chip on board) leds. They each have 7 chips of red light and 2 chips of blue. They are also called grow led or full spectrum led.
Spec says that they can be powered with 20-22V at 350mA
At this voltage and current those chips need serious cooling. I powered them with 19V at around 200mA.
With very modest heatsink they stay only slightly worm to touch and give of plenty of light for this application.
To power them i used one of those BUC converters XL6009 or CN6009(they all the same) that can smoothly regulate output voltage. Main power source will be 12V 100w DC generic power supply which i already have in the cabinet providing electricity for other stuff.





After a bit of wiring and soldering voila, let there be light.





Now this thing is sitting in my sump. Small 600l/h pump is pumping water through it. We'll see what happens. I probably need to grab No3 test to see if anything is happening.

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14 May 2017 08:19 #5 by bart (Bart Korfanty)
@robert
Will update this in a while. Hoping that this will significantly reduce nitrates in my tank.
@Jonlate
You don't even imagine where one has to go to dig for bits and pieces for aquarium projects:laugh:
Was in Corkagh park yesterday, no daphnia yet.
The shop is no more for various reasons, this tank is at home and you are more than welcome to pop in.
I was wondering if you still have this broad leaved cryptocoryne. I lost all my plants and would love to replace that one.

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14 May 2017 13:28 #6 by Jonlate (Jon Late)
I will post you some up. Bills waiting for some first, and I will put you next.
I should do a post of weird things you have change use of, to use in your aquarium hobbie.

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14 May 2017 22:40 #7 by nomad (pat murphy)
Bart really sorry to read in your post of your shop situation,its a knock back but chin up and as i always say Que Sera, Sera ... best of luck in your future ventures...

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23 May 2017 21:11 #8 by bart (Bart Korfanty)
@Jonlate
Much appreciated, if i source it sooner will let you know
@nomad
Not the end of the world, thanks tho.

It's 12 days since i installed it and look for yourselves



Need to fiddle with the slot in the pipe, looks like the water spread is not even.

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