The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Mon Oct 01, 2012 2:50 pm

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 SantaMonicaHelp » Thu Oct 04, 2012 1:43 pm

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

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Thu Oct 11, 2012 3:05 pm

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

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Tue Oct 30, 2012 2:54 pm

This is the Collector UAS Scrubber. :)
Image
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Mon Nov 12, 2012 5:07 pm

Some success stories of people who built upflow algae scrubbers...

ReeferMat on the MASC site: "So I decided to build one of these [UAS scrubbers] today. It's huge because all I had was a 12 inch airstone, but I'm hoping that won't matter too much. It cost me less than $20 to build, so if it works that is the best bang for the buck I have ever seen in the war on algae! It has been up and running for 3 months now and I have to say my tank looks a lot better. Every time I clean it it grows a new type of algae, slime, turf, etc... and it grows fast. I would say I have seen a decline in nuisance algae in my tank, but to be honest that would be an understatement.... It has all but eradicated it. Every time I look at the scrubber I can't help but think that all that junk would be growing in my DT"

Owenreefin on the PNWMAS site: "The first two months of running this UAS scrubber thing I was convinced I was going to rip it out for the algae growth was dismal, and I figured that my system just couldn't make it work. (I also have algae in my fuge) WELL I WAS WRONG. The thing started to really kick in. So much so that I just conducted my only water change in 2 months and I hardly think it was even necessary. I usually do a change of 30% every 2 weeks. My sand bed has cleared up big time too. With the water change I pulled out a good baseball sized amount of algae off the scrubber, couldn't be happier! I will always be running one of these. I will post pics of its growth next time I change water. Many months from now. :) "

Bobba on the scrubber site: "Well, it's been almost 3 weeks with the HOG.5, and 2 with my lone Turbo snail. I am happy to report that I have no Hair Algae left in the tank. No signs of any regrowth of what the snail has eaten either."

Clavius on the scrubber site:

"I've been running a 500 liter tank now for 5 years. It is very well stocked with SPS, LPS, softies, filter feeders and a modest amount of fish. The nutrients were being kept very low by a combination of a giant skimmer and the ZEOvit method. Off course, this results in very lightly coloured corals, which was my goal. Generally I'm very pleased with the colouring and growth of my corals, and please with my tank in general. But one battle I've always lost: brown algae covering my sandbed. I could not, for the life of me, find what was causing those algae. Not to mention solve it. I've tried many many things to solve it, but up untill recently, without luck.

Almost three weeks ago though, I installed a HOG.5 unit. It was a little experiment that I wanted to do ever since I learned about algae scrubbers. I was never creative enough to build one myself, as the space in my 100 ltr sump is very limited. The HOG.5 was affordable and tiny enough to enable my experiment. I could even fit 6 of those units in there with ease. Off course, with the ZEO-method, my nutrients already were really very low. I couldn't measure any NO3 or PO4 with my Salifert test kits. And I never bothered with more expensive kits; unmeasurable should be good enough. I wanted to see if the vitamins and amino acids that the algae scrubber produces would add anything to my reef. And, more importantly, if the algae would consume "something" that the brown algae on my sandbed require.

The result in my sandbed is staggering. After only 3 weeks, not a trace of the pesky brown algae is left! An extra benefit, that I didn't expect, is that my lightly coloured corals now all have noticably much more colour. Without getting darker. They seem to glow! I don't know if it is from the vitamins that are released in the water [from the algae scrubber]. Or maybe the ugly brown algae [on the sand] were also covering my corals and that I now finally seeing my uncovered corals! Strangely enough, the algae in my HOG.5 aren't light green, as you would expect with nutrient-poor tanks. But they're a mix of dark brown with red tints here and there. So, I have no idea why that is or how that works. But at this stage I'm just so happy that I really don't care."
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Wed Apr 03, 2013 10:21 pm

Air Pump Recommendations for UAS® upflow algae scrubbers®. Having bought and tried all of these, here are the best ones:


Flow (highest to lowest):

Coralife Super Luft... TONS of flow for multiple outlets or multiple scrubbers
Tetra Whisper 300... High flow if both outlets are combined into one
JW Aquatic Fusion 700... High flow if both outlets are combined into one
Tetra Whisper 150... Good flow for one outlet
Coralife Luft (regular)... Good flow for one outlet


Noise (most to least):

Coralife Super Luft... (Loud; vibrates)
Coralife Luft (regular)... (Vibrates)
JW Aquatic Fusion 700... Slight vibration
Tetra Whisper 300... Silent
Tetra Whisper 150... Silent


Size: (big to small):

Tetra Whisper 300... Large
JW Aquatic Fusion 700... Medium
Coralife Super Luft... Medium
Tetra Whisper 150... Medium
Coralife Luft (regular)... Small


Cost (most to least):

Coralife Super Luft
Coralife Luft (regular)
Tetra Whisper 300
Tetra Whisper 150
JW Aquatic Fusion 700

Overall winner for a single UAS scrubber used at home: JW Aquatic Fusion 700 (also is the only one with adjustable flow)
Overall winner for multiple UAS scrubbers if noise if ok: Coralife Super Luft
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Sat May 11, 2013 8:14 pm

1982: The original dump-bucket style algae scrubber (works, but very hard to build, install, operate, and harvest)

2008: Waterfall style algae scrubber (works good but hard to build and install; must be removed to harvest)

2011: Upflow style scrubber (work goods, easier to build and install on the glass; must be removed to harvest)

2013: ??? (work great, all 3D growth, easy to build, and instant in-place harvesting without needing to remove anything or turn anything off).
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Sat May 11, 2013 8:15 pm

If anyone has been waiting to build a waterfall or upflow scrubber, we

will soon be posting plans of the new floating surface scrubber. It

floats at the top and does not need a waterfall, and it does not shine

through the glass.
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Tue May 21, 2013 10:58 pm

Pic seems too big; but if you want to build your own floating surface scrubber, here are the pics...
http://www.algaescrubber.net/P8.jpg
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Thu Jun 27, 2013 6:00 pm

How to build a floating surface scrubber:

http://www.algaescrubber.net/P8.jpg
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonicaHelp » Thu Jun 27, 2013 6:01 pm

First 13 days of growth in a floating surface scrubber. This one used four LEDs of 3 watts each, 660nm (red), but you could also use a CFL bulb...

http://www.algaescrubber.net/Surf2-firs ... -plain.jpg
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby Amie » Mon Jul 01, 2013 9:41 pm

Wow, you are getting some great growth. Are you seeing a lot of 'bugs'?
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Mon Jul 01, 2013 10:59 pm

Well I don't really look for them, since I don't have to take it to the sink. I just reach in a grab. But the tangs do hang out below it, and stick their noses up into the drain holes :)
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby Amie » Tue Jul 09, 2013 6:15 am

SantaMonica wrote:Well I don't really look for them, since I don't have to take it to the sink. I just reach in a grab. But the tangs do hang out below it, and stick their noses up into the drain holes :)



That's awesome.
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Sun Jul 28, 2013 9:41 pm

Come tell us what you think about our new HOG scrubber Kickstarter...
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/107 ... n=347e500b
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby GerardoBell » Tue Aug 27, 2013 2:02 am

SantaMonicaHelp wrote: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 http://www.everythingplasticcanvas.com or ebay. Screen should look like this:



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:



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:


Awesome information.. I am searching for one such scrubber so thanks for sharing it.. Will get it very soon
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby GerardoBell » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:04 pm

GerardoBell wrote:
SantaMonicaHelp wrote: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 http://www.everythingplasticcanvas.com or ebay. Screen should look like this:



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:



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:



Awesome information.. I am searching for one such scrubber so thanks for sharing it.. Will get it very soon
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Tue Sep 17, 2013 11:53 am

More harvests from the floating surface scrubber:
http://youtu.be/miWb4R8ajXw
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Sun Dec 29, 2013 3:50 pm

Advanced Aquarist Feature Article for December 2013: Coral Feeding: An Overview
http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2013/12/aafeature


The picture in the article shows that in the 1000 litre test tank:

98% of the food particles go to the skimmer when there are 2 coral colonies
71% of the food particles go to the skimmer when there are 40 coral colonies
92% of the food particles go to the skimmer when there are 2 coral colonies, when skimming is cut in half
55% of the food particles go to the skimmer when there are 40 coral colonies, when skimming is cut in half


"This trade-off between food availability and water quality can be circumvented by using plankton-saving filtration systems, which include [...] algal turf scrubbers"

"Corals are able to feed on a wide range of particulate organic matter, which includes live organisms and their residues and excrements (detritus)."

"...bacteria [...] can be a major source of nitrogen."

"...when dry fish feeds or phytoplankton cultures are added to an aquarium, a part of this quickly ends up in the collection cup of the skimmer.

"...mechanical filters (which can include biofilters and sand filters) result in a significant waste of food."

"Detritus is a collective term for organic particles that arise from faeces, leftover food and decaying organisms. Detrital matter is common on coral reefs and in the aquarium, and slowly settles on the bottom as sediment. This sediment contains bacteria, protozoa, microscopic invertebrates, microalgae and organic material. These sedimentary sources can all serve as coral nutrients when suspended, especially for species growing in turbid waters. Experiments have revealed that many scleractinian corals can ingest and assimilate detritus which is trapped in coral mucus. Although stony corals may ingest detritus when it is available, several gorgonians have been found to primarily feed on suspended detritus."

"Dissolved organic matter (DOM) is an important food source for many corals. [...] scleractinian corals take up dissolved glucose from the water. More ecologically relevant, corals can also absorb amino acids and urea from the seawater"
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby Luis A M » Thu Jan 02, 2014 12:23 pm

Thanks for the link.This seems a very well done and comprehensive insight into the subject of coral feeding! 8)
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Wed Jan 08, 2014 10:22 pm

Yes coral feeding can be fun and useful too :)
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Wed Jan 08, 2014 10:23 pm

Big harvests!
(note: FW does not grow as thick)
http://youtu.be/2GGXoAcmA7E
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby Luis A M » Tue Jan 14, 2014 8:21 pm

You must know that I have been a fan of ATS since the release of "Dynamic Aquaria".I could never visit the Smithsonian but had the pleasure of meeting Walter A.I was playing at that time with a natural light reef tank and built a combination ATS/wave maker.It worked,but needed frequent cleaning if it should keep moving.
But ATSs were never very popular,perhaps because it was not easy to make commercial models. :?
Now,your model of the hanging screen was a nice improvement.I didn't like so much the underwater uprising bubles model,as I imagine algae exposed to air should be more efficient. :?
And now this new floating model looks terrific! 8)
Are you making them for sale?
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The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby DavideAM » Tue Jan 14, 2014 10:03 pm

If you go to Santa Monica's site they are sold there. I've used both the upflow and waterfall type and I had better success with the upflow but that's with limited experience with the waterfall type. I plan to continue using them.
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Re: The new Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS)

Postby SantaMonica » Sat Jan 18, 2014 1:16 am

Yes they are for sale as Davide said, but they are really easy to make, since the floating version has no plumbing.
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