an air pump for an aquarium is a device for saturating water with oxygen that is contained in the air. This is the main function of this device. Basic, but not the only one.
Air bubbles rising up from the sprayer located at the bottom form a kind of so-called bubble lift. [sam_ad id = "15 ″ codes =" true "] This elevator carries water along with it causing it to go up. This contributes to a more rapid mixing of the water layers, equalizing the temperature in all its layers.
In addition, the bubble lift ensures the operation of some designs of internal filters.
Air bubbles bursting at the surface destroy the bacterial and dust film, which also contributes to the improvement of aeration.
Another auxiliary, but far from the last function for the observer is a decorative effect. A fountain of small bubbles located in its place can drastically change the underwater landscape for the better.
What are the aerators?
Today, most household water pumps are vibratory machines. The principle of their operation is based on the fact that the alternating current of the electrical network creates an alternating magnetic field around the electromagnet,
alternating magnetic field makes permanent magnet oscillate
rigidly fixed inside the device. This alternating magnetic field acts on a permanent magnet located relative to an electromagnet in such a way that it is attracted by one pole of an electromagnet, while the other repels. When the polarity of the mains voltage changes, the position of the electromagnet poles also changes. The result is that the permanent magnet tends to another stable position. Then the cycle repeats. It is not difficult to guess that the frequency of oscillations of a permanent magnet will be equal to 50 Hz. In some models, due to constructive tricks, the oscillation frequency is doubled and is 100 Hz. The magnet is attached to the movable bracket, through which its vibrations are transferred to the membrane of elastic material. As a rule – tires. Hesitating, the membrane creates that increased, then reduced pressure inside a small chamber, with which it is connected tightly. On the outer wall of the same chamber there are two valves that allow air to flow only in one direction – outside the aerator to the bell leading to the aquarium.
Why did I stop in more detail on the device of the vibrating water pump? It was necessary to understand one simple thing. The very principle of this product is vibration. Vibration is nothing more than a source of noise. Silent vibration devices do not exist! There are models in which, even during design, the manufacturer provides measures to reduce noise that is heard outside the device. But this naturally results in an additional cost to the product. Sometimes it is so extra that you seriously have to decide or put up with noise or invest additional money or take measures to reduce noise, in general, it’s not bad, though not expensive, but noisy water pump (which will be discussed in one of the next articles)
The vibration mechanism is not the only one possible when creating aerators. Increased air pressure can be generated by a piston pump driven by an electric motor. Rotational motion of the motor shaft is converted into oscillatory using a special eccentric. This design can be very powerful. Its capacity may be enough for any home aquarium economy. In addition to increased power, such an aerator is also silent. But the presence of an electric motor, a high-quality pump, as well as the gearbox needed to reduce speed to acceptable pump speeds makes such a design expensive and unprofitable in the hobby market segment. More often such water pumps are positioned as professional or for aeration of ponds. However, the frequency of the piston movement of the pump is increased in the air pumps for aeration of the ponds. So these pumps are rarely quiet too. But for the pond, perhaps this is not critical.
homemade battery operated
The intermediate variant between the two structures described above is a device in which an electric motor through an eccentric causes the flexible membrane to oscillate, as in the case of the first structure. But the expediency of such an arrangement, in my opinion, is doubtful. The engine increases the cost of the system, and for the membrane to work efficiently, its vibrations must have a sufficiently high frequency. That is, the system becomes more expensive, but does not get rid of the noise, and the power does not increase. Such a construction of the device can be justified only with battery power, if there is no desire or ability to assemble a DC / AC converter.
So we smoothly moved on to the next whole group of aerators –
something like this centrifugal pump works
battery mobile devices. They are necessary when it is necessary for a long time to keep a significant number of fish in a limited amount away from the mains. The simplest examples are fish trading on the non-electrified tray market. Long transport of fish. In the latter case it is possible, however, to connect to the vehicle’s on-board network. But for this you will need either a 12 \ 220V converter or
24 \ 220V. Or you will need a water pump with an input operating voltage equal to the vehicle’s on-board voltage.
Battery water pumps can be either vibrating or powered by an electric motor. When using them, it should be remembered that the choke, in general, is, and the electromagnet and motor windings consume a lot of energy. One set of batteries for most designs will be enough for 4-6 hours of continuous work. There are, of course, pleasant exceptions.
The aquarium pump can also play the role of an aerator. Many models of internal filters on the pump outlet socket have a branch for connecting an airway tube, through which air is sucked in by a rapid current of water and discharged from the socket, breaking into many small bubbles. Pumps do not have highly vibrating parts. They themselves are under water and, moreover, are centrifugal pumps with a brushless electric motor. Such devices effectively mix water, aerate and filter it. Other advantages include noiseless mechanism. The truth is that the excessive noise of bursting bubbles sometimes comes to the fore. But he, unlike the monotonous humming of an electromagnet, can even be pleasant.
To such a barrel of honey I can not add a spoonful of tar. The water jet from the device for most small species is excessively strong. Use for spawning or nursery aquariums is generally not acceptable. Filters of these products require the same attention and regular cleaning as filters of other devices only more often. Due to the high speed of pumping, the filtrate may begin to be thrown out of the filter.
filter pump with the possibility of aeration
The output jet with the help of special adapters can be directed vertically downwards. Then the flow rate will be reduced and small fish will not be forced all the time to fight the mountain stream.
In addition, this type of device is quite bulky, and they are relatively difficult to disguise.
There are similar or rather the same designs only without a compartment with a foam filter and are called the internal air pump for the aquarium. The advantages and disadvantages are the same as that of the filter construction.
Electrified devices are not the only way to aerate water.
About thirty years ago sellers of aquarium fish on the market widely used the design, assembled from the camera of a football or a bicycle wheel. She was pumped with air using a hand bicycle pump that was connected through a special tee. A hose to the aquarium was connected to the third branch of the tee. During the inflation of the chamber, the hose was clamped with a clamp, with its help it was adjusted
By means of such faucets it is possible to regulate the speed of an air stream in hoses
air flow rate
Of course, such a construction is not suitable for the role of the main device today, but it can be used for one-time long transportation of fish. The simplicity and cheapness of the device and the fact that it can be assembled from scrap materials, which can later be used for their intended purpose, is captivating. By the way, if you do not use the camera by itself, but a leather-wrapped ball or a solid bicycle wheel, they can be pumped up with air under great pressure. Then it will be enough for more time. However, in this case, the hose that goes to the aquarium should be sure to install a control valve with which the air flow rate will be regulated.
Another way to saturate water with dissolved oxygen is the use of so-called oxidizers. The principle of their action is that in its reactor under the action of a special catalyst, hydrogen peroxide decomposes into water and oxygen. No external power required. Noise no. Hydrogen peroxide is heavier than water and therefore, theoretically, it cannot exit the reactor. According to the manufacturer, one refueling with hydrogen peroxide lasts for 2 to 4 weeks of work in a metropolitan aquarium. You can forget about the bubble lift. Stir the water this device also will not. In addition, hydrogen peroxide is the strongest oxidizing agent capable of killing both pathogenic and beneficial microorganisms, it will destroy by direct contact of fish and plants causing chemical burns. But this is a force majeure. When used properly, the device should be safe. But I have so far refrained from using it.
So, today the most acceptable aerator for room aquarium farming in terms of price / quality ratio is a vibrating water pump powered by the mains. You can search with reduced noise. It should only be borne in mind that the noise characteristics of such devices are very individual for each individual instance. Even a device for which special technologies for noise reduction are declared, its level may not be acceptable for you, but you will still pay money for these “high” technologies. It is better to check the level of noise when buying a device. Check it better, of course, in a quiet room.
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When choosing a way to aerate the aquarium, consider the performance of the product. This is the number of liters of air that a water pump can overtake in an hour. The minimum required capacity for an aquarium without a biofilter is 0.5-0.7 l / h for each liter of water in your artificial lake. If you have a 100 liter aquarium, then the water pump should provide a minimum of 0.5 x 100 = 50 l / h. If your aquarium is equipped with a biofilter that is not equipped with an active air supply system inside it, you can safely multiply the value obtained above by 1.5 or even by 2.
I think this can finish this review. Having an idea about aeration systems and designs of an air pump for an aquarium, it will be easier for you to choose exactly what you need.