Planted Tank Obsessed
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: CT River Valley, CT, USA
Anything is possible, even very tall planted tanks, but it’s much, much more difficult. Google the “Inverse Square Law”, and check out the images for an easy interpretation. It’s much easier to understand if you see it in action vs trying to understand from text. Basically, the inverse square law reads that if you increase the distance from a light source, the light intensity will decrease by the square of the distance moved. So, in math terms: if you have 15 PAR at 1 ft, if you move to 2 ft your PAR is cut to only 25% intensity, or 3.75 PAR. This is next to nothing, and will barely grow moss.
The reason I say it’s possible is that you can always compensate by getting a bigger light, but it will throw things really out of whack at the top of the tank. If you want to shoot for 30 PAR at the substrate, you need to have 120 PAR at 1 ft depth and likely well over 240 PAR at the surface. This adds a whole new set of variables like pressurized CO2, dosing fertilizers, water movement, oxygenation, and lots of other more advanced subjects. The long story short, deep tanks are a pain in the neck.
If you ever think you're too small to make a difference, spend a couple of nights sleeping with a mosquito.
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Last edited by jellopuddinpop; 08-14-2017 at 09:22 PM.
Reason: I wrote like a speak, with a potty mouth =(