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Controlling CO2 levels efficiently

Discussion in 'CO2 Enrichment' started by Zeus, Oct 23, 2016.

  1. Zeus

    Zeus Lifetime Members
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    Hi all


    I'm new here and hobby, have zero experience and plan a 500l high tech tank ( wont go there ;) ) read/reading lots.


    (I'm dyslexic so I apologise for bad spelling and grammar from the start)


    Started this off else where AWF and UKAPS but would also value you wisdom and input.


    The plants (Those beautiful green/red ones the name of which i fail to pronounce let alone spell ATM) all they need is the right ecosystem to grow and they will. All I need to do is to optimise that ecosystem and they will. Its all about getting the ecosystem right.


    So hears my thought- ( mainly copied and pasted from my other threads. )


    We are after the CO2 level getting to the ideal level fast then staying there without becoming toxic to the inhabitants off the tank but high enough for optimum plant growth, but we end up with a bell curve OFC


    so we are after a Table top not a bell curve ideally


    [img2=JSON]{"data-align":"none","data-size":"custom","src":"http://www.aquascapingworld.com/attachments/graph-co2-levels-png.12023/[/img]


    ( sorry just a quick job)


    So ignore the cost for a moment. and just have two soleniods, needle valves, Inline Atomizer CO2 Diffuser etc and just have one soleniod switch off once the "Just right" CO2 level is reach.


    ovbiously you would need to play with the BBS until you hit the sweat spot


    posted elsewhere thought a bit, slept on it and-


    If folks are not doing it why not.


    heres my take on it.


    the CO2 gets into the water at a constant rate the diffusser as far as I'm aware its on or off, yes their is the pH controller method but that has issues with its use. but the C02 injection method is on or off we don't have a throttle on it the controller just switches it on and off.


    My analogy


    Our CO2 level is a plane on the ground,with limited fuel. we have mountain to over (we wont the CO2 at optimal level fast for obvious reasons) the engines can be on or off no throttle control. We have two engines. we can set the engine thrust (BBS) on the ground. we need 50% thrust (4 BBS) on one engine to cruise at 10,oo0 feet ( 25-30 ppm CO2) to to take off and clear the mountain we need both engines on at 50% (8 BBS combined). So we take off both engines ON reach cruising altitude switch ONE OFF. get close to our destination. switch other engine off. (or plane runs out of fuel in analogy). this would give us the ability to fly making a TABLE TOP flight giving max range (Fine control)


    ---------------------- ian_m said:

    You are forgetting that CO2 is always lost via surface agitation and loss rate is proportional to amount of agitation and CO2 level in the water.

     


    So you start injecting CO2 and level rises but so does the amount lost at the surface

    not forgetting the idea is just just at its Alpha stage didnt wont to start with a thread too long, some just read a bit then move on.


    It works so why change it. Triumph did that with there 750 Bonneville for years, great for spares. But....


    but im jumping in at the very deep end with a 500l tank ( wont go there also [img2=JSON]{"data-align":"none","data-size":"custom","src":"http://www.ukaps.org/forum/styles/default/xenforo/clear.png[/img])


    So looking at an inline duffusser its rated up to 500l so the the duffusser its going to be at its limit trying to get the CO2 levels to an optimal level, as will be losing CO2 as soon as it get in tank - equilibrium with the external enviroment etc etc.So it will take longer.


    So using two soleniods etc will get there faster hit optimium level for CO2 then switch one off. then one maintains the optimum level.


    foxfish said:

    I feel this slow build up is not to shocking for my tank inmates but equally it is simple and effective.

    Yes good point but its the CO2 levels that drive respiration ( a take it as read for fish its the same as humans since we evolved from fish millions of years ago) the water isnt o2 deficient. the fish gupp not for O2 but to get rid off CO2 respiratory alkalosis


    ( although the pH change might effect the max percentage O2 saturation just like temp does, but irreverent its the CO2 levels thats gets the fish) same as in appollo 13 it was the rising CO2 levels that treated the astronauts not the lack of O2, have they made a CO2 scrubber in space.


    its not like jumping in a cold pool of water, just get in it twice as fast thats all.


    -------------


    ian_m said:


    For bigger tanks you will not be able to get decent CO2 distribution flow optimal levels using just one filter/spray bar/diffuser regardless of the CO2 levels you inject. Most people on bigger tanks end up having to use two spray bars, two filters and two diffusers in order to get optimal CO2 replied


    Planning (got some, still to finalise everything) on having Two fluval FX6 ( output 2000l/h with media, got one working on bog wood in bin, with carbon[img2=JSON]{"data-align":"none","data-size":"custom","src":"http://www.ukaps.org/forum/styles/default/xenforo/clear.png[/img]), one with Inline diffuser in INTAKE ( have read up on it [img2=JSON]{"data-align":"none","data-size":"custom","src":"http://www.ukaps.org/forum/styles/default/xenforo/clear.png[/img]) and also and independent loop on Eheim 3000+ for two external 300Watt heaters.


    Thinking of having the 'Thrust' inline diffuser on this independent loop, should get the CO2 levels to optimal levels pretty quick IMO


    Your thoughts feedback welcome


    Thanks


    Zeus


    edit - Inline Atomizer CO2 Diffuser not diffuser
     
    #1 Zeus, Oct 23, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 23, 2016
  2. Zeus

    Zeus Lifetime Members
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    update


    ian_m said:

    How have you coped with the 25mm pipe size of FX6 and 16mm of typical diffusers.

    havn't yet in practice, but have checked out the flow rates for the diameters off the pipes and plan the split the STD 25mm int daimeter pipe with 'Y' fitting to 16mm pipe then back to 25mm again. Well the maths work out flow resistance should be minimal.


    The idea is to basically have one of the filters as a Cerges reactor in a way - slow the bubbles down, ups and downs of flow, lots of media to bump into more time to get into water less bubbles in tank. As for there mass of bubbles from the indepentent loop in the morning thrust stage, well be like Xmas[​IMG]
     
  3. Pikez

    Pikez Rotala Killer!
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    That was a lot to read and you lost me on the airplane stuff. :)


    But here are my quick suggestions:


    1. Get bigger, better reactors. Most people fail here.


    2. Pretend CO2 is free


    3. Your start-with-two-solenoids-then-shut-one-off is not necessary. If you have two solenoids, just have two reactors.


    4. Watch your pH and fish carefully while getting this finely tuned and dialed in


    5. Use controlled surface agitation to keep that CO2 level flat like in the graph to the left. Yes, you will lose a lot of CO2, but that is something we have to accept.


    This is a really strange thing to say, but I measure CO2 flow into my rectors by cupping my dangly bubble counters. I have two of them. Think hernia test - cough, cough. I cup them, close my eyes and feel for the vibration of the bubbles blasting through. From the vibration, I can feel when flow is too slow or fast. The BPS is too fast to visually count. I can tell how much CO2 is flowing into my reactors this way. I also have a constant and steady surface agitation that keeps CO2 ppm from getting too high. I know my system 'intimately' - ahem - so once you get the 'hang' of it, it's not too hairy.
     
  4. Zeus

    Zeus Lifetime Members
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    1. Get bigger, better reactors. Most people fail here. - agree


    2. Pretend CO2 is free - yes ignore the cost


    3. Your start-with-two-solenoids-then-shut-one-off is not necessary. If you have two solenoids, just have two reactors. - disagree - two to reach the optimum CO2 level, then one to maintain it. Better more efficient


    4. Watch your pH and fish carefully while getting this finely tuned and dialed in - Yep


    5. Use controlled surface agitation to keep that CO2 level flat like in the graph to the left. Yes, you will lose a lot of CO2, but that is something we have to accept. -Agree
     
  5. rajkm

    rajkm Article Editor
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    I start my CO2 about 1 hours before lights on. By the time the lights turn on I am already at the level I need so I don't need 2 solenoids.
     
  6. Zeus

    Zeus Lifetime Members
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    Using a pH controller by any chance?


    ( will do some graphs later for STD CO2 setup, pH CO2 controller Setup and for CO2 setup with 'Zeus Booster' ;) '
     
  7. rajkm

    rajkm Article Editor
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    I do have a PH controller and with PH controller I used to start 2 hours before lights. I have now moved to constant injection and so I just use PH controller to calculate my PH drop.
     
  8. Zeus

    Zeus Lifetime Members
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    Thought you had. without which with your [CO2] would hit critical/lethal levels for the fish with you CO2 input levels you are using without the pH controller controlling the [CO2]


    hence the fast ( 1 hour ) to reach optimal [CO2].


    Got more to post ( still working on it), RL (real life) and work kicking in will post soon ;)
     
  9. burr740

    burr740 Micros Spiller
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    I think this is a very interesting idea, although Im not convinced it is any better than an efficient system with a single solenoid.


    Take mine for example, 75 gallon tank with a monster reactor. I can drop the PH 1.1 in about 30 minutes, or even less if I tried. But...dropping it this fast becomes to much a few hours into the photo period, which is the problem shown in the bell curve graph.


    To compensate, I run a lower bubble rate and turn the CO2 on a couple hours before the lights. It takes longer to get the initial drop, but it also makes for a more favorable constant throughout the photo period.


    X bps is only going to drop the PH to a certain point. It's not an endless climb that goes on and on. Eventually it will level out and stay there. So I set mine to come on early, drop the PH about 1.1 by lights on, 2-3 hours later it's down 1.35 or so, where it stays for the rest of the day.


    The climb is slower by design, but the "line" is pretty straight when it matters, like in the table top graph.
     
    #9 burr740, Oct 25, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 25, 2016
  10. Christophe

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    The limiting factor for pH drop is good surface ripple. This also oxygenates your water, and provides for offgassing when the CO2 shuts off. I am another who uses a single solenoid that comes on about an hour before the lights, with a big reactor. It drops pH by 1.0 by lights on, and bottoms out at a 1.3 drop. Surface ripple (and a wet/dry filter, for bigger tanks) is the key here. Before I got the surface ripple right, I could not run a drop much bigger than 0.8 without stressing the livestock.
     
  11. Zeus

    Zeus Lifetime Members
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    (Made some progress with graphs I had planned, Hennery’s law etc, etc, then slept on it and subconscious mind was busy all night!! And took it to the next level )


    Long post warning!!! Sorry


    In Toms classic Puddle of mud there was no flow (at first) and the tank thrived – Low tech tank OFC. High tech tanks users tend to aim for x10+ turnover as that’s what works well OFC.


    Its all about the speeding up the mixing of nutrients when we paly ‘God’ in the high tech tank because of the effect of Mass Diffusivity of Mass in water in being very very very slow


    -------------------------------------------------------------------


    Comparison of diffusion of CO2 in Air and water for example-


    In this comparison we assume the CO2 travels in a straight line ( which OFC it does not. There’s random movement and a concentration gradient, but to make it simple we will ignore that)


    Carbon dioxide in air has a diffusion coefficient of 16 mm2/s


    so for a tank 1.6m long in air would take 100secs to reach other side off tank


    But


    Carbon dioxide in water its diffusion coefficient is 0.0016 mm2/s


    so for 1.6m tank would take 1,000, 000 seconds or 11.5 days


    That’s 10,000 times slower so in a high tech tank we need good turnover, (x10) to mix the CO2 and nutrients when we play ‘God’ over our ecosystem


    -----------------------------------------------------------


    So what I’m postulating is that this x10 turnover may not be needed all the time! and that this turnover is decreasing efficiency when on 24/7, as the CO2 is being lost faster at the surface, we may only need the x10 turnover for times when we want to drastically change the concentrations and mix anything, eg When we want to change the Waters Carbon Dioxides Concentration ([CO2]aqu) for plant growth before the lights come on.


    So ‘say’ you have turnover rate of x5, so adequate water surface movement to get enough gaseous exchange in at night and maintain equilibrium in the tank ie Balanced between the atmospheric air, water column, Substrate(High CEC)and keep at right temp.


    But in High tech tank we want to dramatically change the [CO2]aqu and Mix the ferts.,( we can not change the laws of physics!) so with mass diffusivity being so slow in aqueous media we need a higher turnover (x10) to enable us to reach the new desired levels [CO2]aqu relatively quickly. But once at the desired level and equilibrium is reached the x10 turnover will be helping the [CO2]aqu fall. So once we have reached the ideal [CO2] turn the turnover down to x5!( get the slow mass diffusivity to work to our advantage) As after all we have to do is to maintain the [CO2]aqu to take care of surface loss and plant uptake. During this X10 turnover period would (IMO) be the ideal time to have a higher rate(BBS) of CO2 input (have the Ferts auto dosing at same time too) this period can last for say one hour. Then reduce turnover x5 with just enough CO2 (BBS) to maintain those ideal levels. This lower flow rate won’t need as much surface ripple either as all we want is a slower flow, so water return for this could possibly be lower, therefore reducing CO2 loss even more.


    Run the x10 turnover for one hour when lights go off too.(no CO2 OFC). These two one hour periods with X10 (or more!) turnover rates may be even enough to keep on top of the detritus build up as good as 24/7 x10


    There we have it, dawn of the ‘Eco High Tech Tank’. Yes more initial setup costs timers, pumps etc.


    But less CO2 usage, less power consumption with running lower turnover rates for most of time, less heat loss from tank, less evaporation from tank……


    Two workout periods for fish. Just like nature in way in estuaries, rivers, rain forests, windy periods The water flow rate changes and isn’t constant


    For smaller tanks the effort and cost just wonted be worth it but for the bigger tanks with multiple canisters, pumps, power heads CO2 diffusers/atomisers etc the relatively small cost of a few timers might make a difference to the running cost.


    Will it work – dunno, what settings for turnovers times –dunno Its just an idea of a Noob


    But can’t see why it wouldn’t work as well ;) Yet


    Thanks for reading – Kudos due ( hope the grammer spelking was Ok)


    I welcome any feed back


    Zeus
     
  12. Zeus

    Zeus Lifetime Members
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    OK - would you buy or think buying the latest


    ADA Eco-Utratech- Ecosystem Complete


    Product features – small compact unit with twelve independent/configurable (via software) power outputs240v/110v/24v/12,v, pH sensor, temp sensor, flow sensor, Precision variable( by software) CO2 valve , WiFi,LAN, HDMI, VGA,DVI,USB, software with Windows/Mac compatibly, allows you monitor/adjust/program Temp,CO2 input, CO2 ppm, flow rate though pump, Pumps RPM pump, ampage usage by pump/canister, control program for lights adjust volt/amps plus auto dosing control/tank topup control also. Then add smart app on your phone with full control/monitoring/alarms etc.


    Would you buy it, think would help make Aquascaping easier/better ?


    Basically give God like control over the tank. If the answer is NO I’m wasting my time on this
     
    #12 Zeus, Oct 26, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 26, 2016
  13. Christophe

    Christophe Subscriber
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    It's nice to have timing and raising and lowering of the light level. Timing the CO2 in conjunction with the light is good. Beyond that, it's mostly a toy.


    Unless it does 3x per week water changes for you, has pruning routines for 400 plant species, and laser-guided hardscape placement! :D
     
  14. rajkm

    rajkm Article Editor
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    Like I said now only use PH controller to monitor but not to control my CO2/Solenoid.


    Right now if I do full blast CO2 at my high surface agitation I bottom out at 1.3 PH drop. I can go lower but been told that there is no real value in that.


    Thr higher surface agitation also manages high O2 values which is just as important, not just for livestock but also helps avoid certain types of algae IME e.g BBA


    I would buy the software at the right price (not premium price ADA would charge) just because i like to monitor but will not use the PH controller portion but more so as PH monitor.
     
  15. Zeus

    Zeus Lifetime Members
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    The link for the ADA Eco-Utratech- Ecosystem Complete isn’t possible is not on the web or the dark web, I would need a spinal interface link me up to web and the addresses would end something Like …zeus/noob/backoff mind/wizbangideas/offhisrocker/adaecoultratechecoesystemcomplete thnk you get my drift


    But if there was one and at £50 mine would be ordered. So I have been searching/reading on remote management systems with smart phone apps etc. There is a lot out there. Some very expensive industrial system very cool but cost too much. Then there the reasonably priced ones available. Eg LightwaveRF and Energenie.


    I was thinking I might be able to vary the water pumps speed by altering the current. So emailed the company’s in question and got the answer NO. Wasn’t put off with that reply took a dimmer light switch rigged up a plug and socket and gave it a try. They were right, decrease the available current to the pump it slows a little then it stops. So the idea of controlling water flow rates with dimmer switch is out the window. The pump is on or off, yes can adjust the values but can’t do it remotely or on a schedule without a remote adjustable value, so dropped that idea.


    Wasn’t after light dimming as already have Kessil controller for lights


    Most off the Remote units use a WiFI or Lan connection to communicate via smart app with the main control unit. Ok no problem with that as long as the schedules is being run from the control unit. After all remote access is just a bonus. It’s the RF communication between the control unit and the sockets, it can be hit and miss at times. We need something reliable 100%.


    So ordered myself


    Energenie LAN Power Management System £65 (great specs) with smart app control.


    Which will allow me to play with the timings easy, 16 a day per socket (4off) and I can have a play with the “Zeus booster” idea that’s will cost me £70 extra for extra CO2 equipment.


    If the “Zeus boost” idea fails ( which it might well do ;) ) I ready to add another tank CO2 wise
     
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