The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby ranadikz12 » Wed Aug 29, 2012 9:36 pm

SantaMonica wrote:Scrubbers are now sized according to feeding. Nutrients "in" (feeding) must equal nutrients "out" (scrubber growth), no matter how many gallons you have. So...

An example VERTICAL waterfall screen size is 3 X 4 inches = 12 square inches of screen (7.5 X 10 cm = 75 sq cm) with a total of 12 real watts (not equivalent) of fluorescent light for 18 hours a day. If all 12 watts are on one side, it is a 1-sided screen. If 6 watts are on each side, it is a 2-sided screen, but the total is still 12 watts for 18 hours a day. This screen size and wattage should be able to handle the following amounts of daily feeding:

1 frozen cube per day (2-sided screen), or
1/2 frozen cube per day (1-sided screen), or
10 pinches of flake food per day (2-sided screen), or
5 pinches of flake food per day (1-sided screen), or
10 square inches (60 sq cm) of nori per day (2-sided screen), or
5 square inches (30 sq cm) of nori per day (1-sided screen), or
0.1 dry ounce (2.8 grams) of pellet food per day (2-sided screen), or
0.05 dry ounce (1.4 grams) of pellet food per day (1-sided screen)

High-wattage technique: Double the wattage, and cut the hours in half (to 9 per day). This will get brown screens to grow green much faster. Thus the example above would be 12 watts on each side, for a total of 24 watts, but for only 9 hours per day. If growth starts to turn YELLOW, then increase the flow, or add iron, or reduce the number of hours. And since the bulbs are operating for 9 hours instead of 18, they will last 6 months instead of 3 months.

Very rough screen made of roughed-up-like-a-cactus plastic canvas.

Clean algae off of screen every 7 to 14 days, so that you can see the white screen material.





thx for the answer . .
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Mon Sep 03, 2012 3:49 am

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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:01 am

Some more successes from waterfall scrubbers:

Damon on the IM site: "I have been completely skimmer less for over a month now, and my ats has brought my nitrates from off the chart above 50ppm and with yesterday's test it has come down to 5 on the high end with color choosing(can't wait for a Hanna to make a nitrate). I am extremely happy with my ats as it is now, but I do believe I'm going to build a second one next to it. I built this size for a small (75-90g heavy bioload), but I'm going to add a second one that will be a more professional build quality now that I have figured out how I want it to run. I still love the fact that I have dropped $25 a month in electricity, haven't done a water change in a month while still dropping nitrates and getting amazing coral growth. The best part is I am making these to utilize my overflow drains, so in essence I adding a more efficient form of filtration without adding any heat or extra electricity. I can't report on long term results as I've only been running an ats since last fall. But from where my tank was to where it is now is enough for me to jump ship, lol."

Kerry on the scrubber site: "I was hard for me to believe that this device worked. It took about a year before I built one and now I wish I knew about this years ago. Who would have thought algae would provide so much success? I even have one on my 150G FW Jack Dempsey tank as well. And yes, its so nice not to have a skimmer anymore!!!!"

Reefkeeper2 on the RC site: "I run a skimmer, biopellets and an ATS. The skimmer and the pellets worked well keeping nitrates at 0, but there was room for improvement with phosphate control. I tried GFO, and lanthanum. My sps do not like the GFO. I got STN often when I changed it out. The lanthanum worked, but was very labor intensive and so unpractical. The ATS did the trick nicely. I have been a reefer for a very long time. I think I have tried every method of nutrient control thought up by anyone. I really enjoy trying out new ideas and trying to improve on old ones. I have to say that this combination has worked the best of all I have tried over the years."

N728NY on the RC site: "Just chiming in to say I really hope this thread keeps going! Lots of good info. I'm still pretty new to keeping a reef tank. I have been running a scrubber with my skimmer for the past three months. Before then I could never get my nitrates below 15, and since I added my scrubber I never been able to detect any nitrates, even after feeding twice as much. I know with my 75 gallon set up, I made my scrubber slightly over sized (sized for 100 gallons) and I dump huge amounts of pellets and frozen shrimp in my tank on top of spot feeding my corals on a regular basis and I still have yet to register any nitrates on my test kit. Being that I'm still new I still haven't built up the courage to unplug the skimmer yet. I may try it once I know for sure my scrubber is fully matured, got plenty of ro water made up and salt ready just in case I need to do an emergency water change lol. I still have a clump of cheato left that I suppose would be good back up if the scrubber couldn't keep up. The cheato doesn't really grow very much right now because of the scrubber. I love these scrubbers, I'm so glad I took the time to read "both sides" of the arguments on them to find out the facts about them."

Kentth on the scrubber site: "overall the tank is much healthier, a lot of feather dusters, coming out of the rocks, yellow sponges, other opaque sponges. big thing is no water changes for over 8 months, almost no silt, it has really cut my maintenance"

Langtudatinh01 on the RC site: "i completely redo my 40B with the ATS from beginning, i barely see much algae on my display tank but i now have a mature ATS. i relocated all my fish and add another one without any issue. the dead rocks i use bleach quite a lot of phosphate back into the water, but the ATS has handle the issue like a cham. i do not see much algae on my display. everything is green like grass down at the ATS. i am very happy so far.'

Bicolour on the MFUK site: "quick update, so my ats has been running since [6 weeks ago] and i gotta say all the algea in my tank and on the sand has gone, wow. gotta say it was well worth doing. i dont monitor growth at the moment but this is something i will be doing in the future, my set up was basic costing very little as i wanted to try this before i really looked into the idea. very impressed and can only say if you got space look into it"

Rysher on the RC site: "i have a 6x9 screen, 1 inch is submerged so only 6x8 is really used, i also have a 40b. it has been my only form of filtration ever since i started the tank [months ago], i feed almost 2 cubes a day, only have 2 fishes but u cant see any algae on my DT, almost non existent film algae too, i clean my DT glass maybe once a week."

Packman90 on the RC site: "I have a 72 Gallon bow front and until a couple of months ago I was going to throw my tank away and give up on saltwater tanks all together. I was brand new, took a lot of advice, started my system and watched as it became more and more green, until i found out about scrubbers. I lost all of the coral frags I bought, about $400.00 worth, and just felt that I would never get it. I have it now, and just bought my first new frags in over 8 months. Thanks to all of you scrubbers out there who showed me the way. Here is the tank after the scrubber did it's magic. this took a total of 1 month for it to clear up, and I did not remove any of the algae, it just melted a way. Only problem I have is that i have some sea grass that is melting away as well and cheto in my sump is also slowly dieing."
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby tipa » Wed Sep 19, 2012 3:29 pm

SantaMonica wrote:Image

Hi SM! Im very interested in this design, what are the guidelines for a UAS? Screen size to airflow ratio? Led to screen ratio? And does the bottom have to be open or can i seal it and punch a few holes in it? So as to not bother with putting a screen below and it also might give it a cleaner look. Which is better to use, an air stone or punch holes on the hose? Lastly, is the screen fastened to the removable panel (or is it even removable)? If not, how does it stay in place?
Sorry for the hundred questions... Thanks!
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:28 pm

Screen size and LED uses the same guidelines based on food as the waterfall.

Airflow is: 0.13 lpm of air per cm of width of screen.

Bottom can be open or closed. If algae grows yellow, open it more.

Sliced airline is probably better because it will not grow algae on the line.

Screen can be fastened to the panel, and the whole thing removed to clean (one piece).
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby tipa » Fri Sep 21, 2012 2:51 pm

Thanks a lot SM!
Just a few more details, what are the guidlines on LEDs? How far does it need to be from the screen and does it have a watts to screen size ratio? Do i need a lens for the LED?
660nm LED right? What do you prefer 1w, 2w or 3w LEDs?
Thanks a lot for your patience!
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Sat Sep 22, 2012 6:54 am

1 to 2 inches is ok distance.

No lens needed.

660nm (red).

3 watt stars are good and easy. I use these...
www.ledgroupbuy.com/deep-red-660nm/
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby tipa » Sat Sep 22, 2012 1:26 pm

Thanks again SM!
Will try it out as soon as i have time
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Mon Sep 24, 2012 3:45 am

Here are the requirements for building a UAS.

Screen material:

1)
Use plastic canvas as the algae screen. Remember to roughen it up properly using a wood saw or hole saw. You can get plastic canvas at craft store (under sewing section) or sewing store or online at places like www.everythingplasticcanvas.com or ebay. Screen should look like this:

Image
Image

Lighting

2)
The lighting needs to be 1 watt per square inch (6.25 square cm) of screen material. A 3 by 4 inch screen is 12 square inches not 24. Make sure you have enough wattage and use a reflector if the light doesnot focus on screen. For fluorescent bulbs, it needs to have a spectrum of 2700k-3000k. For LEDs, it needs to be red 660nm. You can cut the wattage in half if you are using LED lights. In order for algae to grow, make sure that the light is on for 18 hours a day. Here are some bulbs and reflector type:

Image
Image

Bubbles:

3)
The bubbles need to be rapid and large and distributed through out the screen evenly for algae to grow. The best way to do this is by slicing the air tubing. Make sure the air pump is good so that the bubbles can constantly flow across the screen for 24 hours a day. This is why you need bubbles:

Image
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby tipa » Wed Sep 26, 2012 1:33 pm

Im planning on starting on that UAS project. I got 3pcs 3w 660 nm LEDs to be spread across a 3x8 screen, would that be enough? I also want to paint the UAS black since the material im going to use is white, what kind of paint can i use so that it doesnt harm the aquarium inhabitants? Also thinking of using a 200lph air pump for it is that ok?
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Thu Sep 27, 2012 12:18 am

If you spread the LEDs out, and if they are 2" from the screen, it should be fine.

If the screen is 3" wide, 1 lpm (60 lph) is enough.

No info on paint.
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Tue Oct 02, 2012 2:18 am

This is the new design with bubble remover. :)
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Fri Oct 12, 2012 2:39 am

Do you have any suggestions for the best manufacturer for making these?
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby tipa » Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:37 pm

Hi SM, my UAS is about a week old. No hair algae yet, its growing some dark brown algae on the screen but my aquarium glass has this film like algae growing where the scrubber is located. Is this supposed to happen? And does it block out the light going to the screen? Whats my next step? Do i wait another week to clean the screen? Do i clean the aquarium glass? Need your advise. Thanks!
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Fri Oct 19, 2012 11:54 pm

It does grow there sometimes. Just slide the scrubber over a bit, and the fish will eat it. Or use a towel with one motion from bottom to top.
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