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PostPosted: Sep 15th, '06, 02:53 
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These solar pumps. They run off a panel?

I'm having great success, and have had for years, using very cheap small pumps to run systems. I have a 20 dollar pump, it never stops, so when I see a 300 dollar pump, it needs to perform tricks...

With solar pumps, why would you need an aerator?

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PostPosted: Sep 15th, '06, 03:32 
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Aquaddict - Many of us backyard AP folks can get away with running smaller lower flow pumps because our stocking densities are not as intense as commercial operations, and we are harnessing the oxygenation that occurs in the grow beds. However, as some have found out the hard way by fish mortality, there comes a point when stocking density pushes DO demand up, and pump failure or insufficiency becomes critical to maintaining the DO level. Right now there seems to be a flurry of research going on over backup systems, testimony to the crisis low DO can create! Personally I think DO is the most critical part of AP.

To answer your question - Yes these solar pumps run direct off of panels, or AC whichever grid tie-in or stand alone you are using. For continuous duty you will have to tie in a battery bank to run the pump at night and during cloud cover. There are packages available of various sizes and cost that include pump, panel, and regulator to charge a battery (that you povide), which is what I have.

However, minimum aeration requirements for Tilapia (the fish with one of the lowest DO mortality rates) by water flow alone dictate a minimum of 6 gallons per minute (22.8 litres) for healthy growth, and I would venture to guess that most folks in here are providing less than the minimum for thier chosen fish. 12 gallons per minute is ideal, and there is no solar pump, surface or otherwise that can run continuously at 12gpm. In fact few can even meet the minimum demand relaibly as Murray has pointed out.

Therefore, the choices remain (for continuous duty):

1) Low flow pumps (less than 6 gallons per minute) and supplement with vertical fall (waterfall) and grow bed surface space
2) Solar or Wind (or combo) powered water pumps w/ aereation pump supplement
3) Good old high flow AC pumps

Have I left anything out?


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PostPosted: Sep 15th, '06, 05:24 
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Excellent post and answer, thank you.

I'm of the high flow, waterfall school of thought I'd say.

DO demands. Yes. I ran deep water culture with solids in the flow (just pulverised by pump and recirculated) for years. The DO demand due to circulating solids in this system was very high.

I dealt with it using oxygenation via flow through an elbow at the point of entry for each plant site and a return waterfall to the tank. I recirculated the water in each plant site 10 times an hour. Temps ranged a lot. I found it performed best between 65-72.

This system was very good but it was a damp cold hole and mildew etc forced me outside where I made my greenhouse.

I hope to scale the small systems flow up in my greenhouse.

Would love to talk to you more on this, it makes perfect sense that stocking higher will make DO that more critical.

Owning a DO meter, that would imply I have money. no such luck
:lol:

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PostPosted: Sep 15th, '06, 07:06 
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Owning a DO meter, that would imply I have money. no such luck


Amen to that!!

I have to agree with you on high flow combined with vertical saturation. If you look at a clear mountain creeks where trout thrive, the average flow is anywhere from 5-100 Cubic Feet Per Second (CFS). 1 cubic foot per second equals 450 gallons per minute!!!! This is considered low flow as mountain streams go therefore the high flow definition by AP terms has to be put in perspective.

Granted we aren't raising trout, and all we need for healthy growth (of most tank culutured species) is about 5ppm of DO. So I use the term "high flow" loosely and hypothesize (since I don't have a meter to confirm) that the flow rate is less consequential in a closed system than the saturation rate. Saturation is whitewater and therefore the more whitewater in your system the better. How one achieves this is up to the user. The cheapest way is to use gravity. The next is to use renewable energy sources (wind/solar).

Maybe if one of us wins the System Contest, we should get a DO meter first?


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PostPosted: Sep 15th, '06, 07:50 
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Oh yeah, forgot about that, if I finish my course, and my greenhouse, and 2 herb gardens, then the special kokopu barrel...

I can take piccies and things then. Enter the competition, just to be cut off at the post by some noob upstart with all flash stuff ;)

I am raising trout, some native ones. They are fingerlings in a 150-180ish litre (40-47 gallon) fluctuating tank with an ebb and flow bed above them. At present they are 1/4 - 1/3rd kilos combined weight. 14 of them.

Native breeds are hardier, some species coping with slower flows and your own specific climate better, but how fast will they grow on what feed? Time to question 'the man' who farms our natives again...

My particular species only reaches 30 cm (12 inch) but have access to another I'm going to help in a DIY breeding programme on, that grow to 50 cm (20 inch).

If you're into conservation, you might find something farmable in your local populations.

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PostPosted: Sep 15th, '06, 11:42 
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I can take piccies and things then. Enter the competition, just to be cut off at the post by some noob upstart with all flash stuff


The judges will see thru the flash I suspect. Can't get around applied knowledge, especially when the judges know. You know? ;)

You are the trout farmer..!!! *tipping my hat* Well that is respectable I must say. I researched trout as a "legal" option, but concluded the metabolism was too low for AP. What are you growing in the bed?


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PostPosted: Sep 15th, '06, 15:26 
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Personally I think DO is the most critical part of AP.


A refinement on that would be " the least easy (most expensive) to test for yet an almost "instant" killer when the pumps go out"

Just a qurstion MF
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However, minimum aeration requirements for Tilapia (the fish with one of the lowest DO mortality rates) by water flow alone dictate a minimum of 6 gallons per minute (22.8 litres) for healthy growth, and I would venture to guess that most folks in here are providing less than the minimum for thier chosen fish. 12 gallons per minute is ideal, and there is no solar pump, surface or otherwise that can run continuously at 12gpm. In fact few can even meet the minimum demand relaibly as Murray has pointed out.


I assume the 12gpm you're talking about is air? my question with your stated values of GPM (air or water) is that it will entirely depend of stocking densities and hence DO demand. Unless i've confused myself :

Amount of DO in the water is directly related to the amount you put in (including natural surface exchange) and the BOD demand (which will increase with number of fish.

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PostPosted: Sep 15th, '06, 15:59 
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The Judge aint gunna be swayed by fancy shiny systems.... ;)

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PostPosted: Sep 15th, '06, 21:13 
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No cake and cookies to sway ya either?
EB may I suggest you look in the Dirt Garden forum, Big Red may try to pass that monstrosity off later during the contest. Tattle tattle!

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PostPosted: Sep 16th, '06, 03:38 
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A refinement on that would be " the least easy (most expensive) to test for yet an almost "instant" killer when the pumps go out"

Isn't that the truth...All I want for christmas is DO meter....a DO meter.....a DO meter
Quote:
I assume the 12gpm you're talking about is air? my question with your stated values of GPM (air or water) is that it will entirely depend of stocking densities and hence DO demand. Unless i've confused myself :



Steve - By gpm I am referencing water flow when it is being used as the only source of aeration in a system.
Quote:
Amount of DO in the water is directly related to the amount you put in (including natural surface exchange) and the BOD demand (which will increase with number of fish.

You are so correct about the BOD demand and there are a fair amount of formulas regarding stocking density:grow bed space:water volume ratios. However, with the diversity of system sizes, volumes, stocking densities, flows, methods of cycling, and even species selection, I truly believe there is no universal ratio that is applicable unless we all had the exact same systems. Any system is ultimately limited by its ability to deliver DO to fish above all else, and then by its ability to BOD balance with its fish population. I think that's as simple as it gets. I’m trying to seek as natural a solution to DO/BOD balance while maintaining a sizeable population of fish and maintaining low man made energy consumption. That’s why I am looking at pond aeration and alternative energy pumps and solar systems. When we rely solely on water flow for aeration, we must then rely on AC power to achieve these high flows. Alternative energy aeration may be the solution and AC the backup to when alternative energy can't meet system demand. A good alternative system would basically be able to run 24/7/365 if designed right.

Maybe?????


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PostPosted: Sep 16th, '06, 07:53 
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With the flow catering to both plants and fish O2 I'm more inclined to seek alternate solutions via pump options. But you say the pumps can't do it. Not even using one solely for flow for oxygen?

Definately the fish are priority.

This 12 gpm for water flow for fish. In how much water and stocking rate etc?

If this amount is returned from a 30 cm drop with venturis it'd make a fair amount of air in my wee pond.

A trick I hope to employ regarding high flow volumes and small pumps is having a staggered system ie: Bed drains to floating culture drains to tank.

In effect giving twice the bang for your buck.

I'm still scratching my head on how to drop ebb and flow into continuous flow. Shouldn't be too long before I have a lightbulb moment. I've had several but which one is hardest to screw up...

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PostPosted: Sep 16th, '06, 11:04 
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Speaking about DO, the mate that i have "convinced" to do an aqua set up, rang me on the way home and told be that our old work was selling them for $150ea, and they had 4 in stock. "BUY THEM NOW, ALL OF THEM" i said. We talkied a little longer an i reminded him that it had to be a stuff up. He called the sales manager back up and confirmed the price.

Ok, who am i to argue? I was just about to put them up in the buy/sell section but i thought i'd check their website. $630 list . I cleed him back to get him to check again, but he'd just been on the phone with them. "Morons quoted me the PROBE price". Oh well :(

I guess the rule for water flow and airation with out testing would be the same as my philosophy for tank size..................As big (much) as you can. :)

Steve

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PostPosted: Sep 16th, '06, 12:46 
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Yes. The bigger the tank the better the buffer with everything, which is why I hope to 'add pond' with dwc ;) . Mine's a bit small, but free is free.

Dang! on the DO meters, I would've serviced 3 sailors for one of them.

rofl

Joking, only 2. :D

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PostPosted: Sep 16th, '06, 12:47 
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A commandment? - On tanks - bigger is better.

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PostPosted: Sep 16th, '06, 14:07 
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michael_Ferrini wrote:
Yes these solar pumps run direct off of panels, or AC whichever grid tie-in or stand alone you are using. For continuous duty you will have to tie in a battery bank to run the pump at night and during cloud cover. There are packages available of various sizes and cost that include pump, panel, and regulator to charge a battery (that you povide), which is what I have.


Hey guys,
was just reading through the posts on this thread and had an interesting idea. You know how you can get those lights that only turn on at night (sensor lights), why not have a switch in your solar panel/battery bank which switches the pump over when it's not light. (you can buy such sensors from places like Jaycar and it'd be pretty cheap to install).

Cheers,

Duncan.

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