Can air pump replace co2 injections? - The Planted Tank Forum
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-25-2013, 08:03 PM Thread Starter
Newbie
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: north carolina
Posts: 2
Can air pump replace co2 injections?

I had an idea that most plants seem to grow better and faster emersed than submersed because they have a unlimited co2 pool. What if I tried to simulate this infinite co2 pool by just saturating the water with lots of air?
If I were to say, run a air pump, turn it to full power, to the point that you can see little tiny air bubbles everywhere in the tank, would the plants be able to extract their co2 supply from the tiny air bubbles?

Just a theory, because I really dislike messing with co2.
Thanks for any replies
snowball is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-25-2013, 08:05 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
HD Blazingwolf's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 4,907
unforntunately no.
the co2 gas inside each bubble makes up about 5% of its mass. ad 70% of it is nitrogen. the co2 is gonna ride the nitrogen bubble right out to the top

Sump Pimp #7

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
HD Blazingwolf is offline  
post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-25-2013, 09:01 PM
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Ashford, Kent, England.
Posts: 40
If you dislike messing with CO2 injection you might want to try liquid carbon, such as Easy Life. Its suitable for most plants plus has an anti algae effect. Cheaper too.
Delexboarfoot is offline  
 
post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-25-2013, 09:12 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
HD Blazingwolf's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 4,907
Quote:
Originally Posted by Delexboarfoot View Post
If you dislike messing with CO2 injection you might want to try liquid carbon, such as Easy Life. Its suitable for most plants plus has an anti algae effect. Cheaper too.
initially yes cheaper
over time costly

Sump Pimp #7

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
HD Blazingwolf is offline  
post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-25-2013, 09:35 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
DarkCobra's Avatar
 
PTrader: (5/100%)
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Baton Rouge, LA
Posts: 3,350
Merely aerating a tank to keep the CO2 concentration the same as air, and replace CO2 as fast as it's depleted, doesn't require many bubbles and is quite easy.

Unfortunately, CO2 moves 10,000X slower through water than in air, which means that very little of it actually ends up touching plant leaves where it can be absorbed. That's why you need both high concentrations and high flow to get a submersed plant even a fraction as much CO2 as it can get from air.

What you're suggesting could work, but only if a significant portion of leaves are in actual contact with air bubbles at any moment. Which would require a frothing boiling mess o' bubbles, not a fizz.
DarkCobra is offline  
post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-26-2013, 04:28 PM
Algae Grower
 
PTrader: (0/0%)
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Ashford, Kent, England.
Posts: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by HD Blazingwolf View Post
initially yes cheaper
over time costly
Sorry fella but I must disagree. It costs me about 13 pence a day for my 450l tank. I suspect it would cost more in gas alone it I used compressed CO2. Happy to be corrected if I'm wrong.
Delexboarfoot is offline  
post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-26-2013, 04:41 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (84/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 21,012
Quote:
Originally Posted by snowball View Post
I had an idea that most plants seem to grow better and faster emersed than submersed because they have a unlimited co2 pool. What if I tried to simulate this infinite co2 pool by just saturating the water with lots of air?
If I were to say, run a air pump, turn it to full power, to the point that you can see little tiny air bubbles everywhere in the tank, would the plants be able to extract their co2 supply from the tiny air bubbles?

Just a theory, because I really dislike messing with co2.
Thanks for any replies
When Tom Barr first proposed the CO2 mist idea, one of the advantages was that the gaseous CO2 would be in contact with the plant leaves, and that would make CO2 more available to the plants than when it is dissolved in the water. The CO2 mist idea worked great, but it did require that you accept the water being filled with microscopic bubbles all of the time.

If you were to run the air through a needle-wheel modified powerhead, the bubbles would be chopped up into microscopic bubbles with a small percentage of CO2 in each bubble. Those bubbles collecting under the leaves should increase the availability of CO2 to the plants. It might be a trivial increase and do no good, but it would be an interesting experiment to try.

Hoppy
Hoppy is offline  
post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-26-2013, 05:34 PM
Children Boogie
 
mistergreen's Avatar
 
PTrader: (13/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 16,743
HD and Dark Cobra are right. The density of water does not allow CO2 to be absorbed very well by plants. You need 10x the amount (concentration) of CO2 available in the air going into the water column. So using plain atmospheric air is not a viable option. If that was the case, we'd all do it.

You can always set up a low tech dirt tank if you don't want to mess with CO2. The bacteria and other fauna in your tank will produce enough for plants in lower light situations.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
mistergreen is offline  
post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-26-2013, 10:51 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
HD Blazingwolf's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 4,907
Quote:
Originally Posted by Delexboarfoot View Post
Sorry fella but I must disagree. It costs me about 13 pence a day for my 450l tank. I suspect it would cost more in gas alone it I used compressed CO2. Happy to be corrected if I'm wrong.
If thats the case, a well setup co2 system would last you years without a refill...

Sump Pimp #7

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
HD Blazingwolf is offline  
post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-26-2013, 10:53 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
HD Blazingwolf's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 4,907
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
When Tom Barr first proposed the CO2 mist idea, one of the advantages was that the gaseous CO2 would be in contact with the plant leaves, and that would make CO2 more available to the plants than when it is dissolved in the water. The CO2 mist idea worked great, but it did require that you accept the water being filled with microscopic bubbles all of the time.

If you were to run the air through a needle-wheel modified powerhead, the bubbles would be chopped up into microscopic bubbles with a small percentage of CO2 in each bubble. Those bubbles collecting under the leaves should increase the availability of CO2 to the plants. It might be a trivial increase and do no good, but it would be an interesting experiment to try.
I agree with the mist method. Ive tried reactors in different forms and my plants do grow better by a small amount with a mist..
This measured over a month i averaged maybe 1/2 inch growth difference.. im running more light now, it may be even more. But there is a difference

Sump Pimp #7

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
HD Blazingwolf is offline  
post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-26-2013, 10:55 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (84/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 21,012
Quote:
Originally Posted by mistergreen View Post
HD and Dark Cobra are right. The density of water does not allow CO2 to be absorbed very well by plants. You need 10x the amount (concentration) of CO2 available in the air going into the water column. So using plain atmospheric air is not a viable option. If that was the case, we'd all do it.

You can always set up a low tech dirt tank if you don't want to mess with CO2. The bacteria and other fauna in your tank will produce enough for plants in lower light situations.
Converting air into a mist of microscopic bubbles, which don't float rapidly to the surface is a relatively new idea. I'm not at all sure that many people have tried that as a source of CO2. In any case it is an easy cheap thing to try, just out of curiosity, if nothing else.

Hoppy
Hoppy is offline  
post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-26-2013, 11:13 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
HD Blazingwolf's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 4,907
Quote:
Originally Posted by Delexboarfoot View Post
Sorry fella but I must disagree. It costs me about 13 pence a day for my 450l tank. I suspect it would cost more in gas alone it I used compressed CO2. Happy to be corrected if I'm wrong.
If thats the case, a well setup co2 system would last you years without a refill...

Sump Pimp #7

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
HD Blazingwolf is offline  
post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-26-2013, 11:15 PM
Planted Tank Guru
 
HD Blazingwolf's Avatar
 
PTrader: (8/100%)
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 4,907
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
Converting air into a mist of microscopic bubbles, which don't float rapidly to the surface is a relatively new idea. I'm not at all sure that many people have tried that as a source of CO2. In any case it is an easy cheap thing to try, just out of curiosity, if nothing else.
Ive tried it, with a toms wood diffuser and a rio pump. The mist does fill the tank. There was no noticeable growth difference over a 6 week period before the wood became mush.
I did notice a lot of the bubbles would shrink in size so something was dissolved,
The growth rate may not have changed due to i had excessive low light with a modified marineland singlebright by added led's

Sump Pimp #7

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
HD Blazingwolf is offline  
post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-27-2013, 12:01 AM
Children Boogie
 
mistergreen's Avatar
 
PTrader: (13/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 16,743
Can air pump replace co2 injections?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
Converting air into a mist of microscopic bubbles, which don't float rapidly to the surface is a relatively new idea. I'm not at all sure that many people have tried that as a source of CO2. In any case it is an easy cheap thing to try, just out of curiosity, if nothing else.
It's worth a try but probably won't raise co2 all that much. Bacteria would probably do a better job. You'd need equipments to measure co2 levels. We can't depend on "eyeing it" in experiments.

There are cases where water output from dams stories high would cause air to mix so much that would cause fish to have the bends but that's huge volumes of water and energy. You're likely to inject more nitrogen than co2 as mentioned already.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
mistergreen is offline  
post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-27-2013, 01:37 AM
Planted Tank Guru
 
PTrader: (84/100%)
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 21,012
Quote:
Originally Posted by HD Blazingwolf View Post
Ive tried it, with a toms wood diffuser and a rio pump. The mist does fill the tank. There was no noticeable growth difference over a 6 week period before the wood became mush.
I did notice a lot of the bubbles would shrink in size so something was dissolved,
The growth rate may not have changed due to i had excessive low light with a modified marineland singlebright by added led's
My experience is that, for low light tanks, relatively small injections of CO2, by the DIY method, can cause dramatic increases in plant growth rates. If your experiment showed no noticeable growth rate difference it is very likely that this is not effective enough to be worth trying again. My guess is that the tiny amount of CO2 in each air bubble isn't enough to help the plants even when the bubble is lodged against a leaf. Alternatively, the CO2 quickly dissolves into the water, just barely increasing the ppm of CO2 in the water, and the bubble that sticks to a leaf is all nitrogen and oxygen.

Hoppy
Hoppy is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome