Is it ok to supplement the 10X flow through refu using an addt'l pump from last chamber to first?

Discussion in 'Triton Applied Reef Bioscience' started by Jaculus, Nov 8, 2017.

  1. Jaculus

    Jaculus Active Member R2R Supporter

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    I currently have a VERY heavily stocked 200 DD tank with a 125Gal Basement refugium. Obviously with having a large refugium and GFO, Carbon, Bio Pellets and LOTS of macro algae growth I have not had any large issues with NO4 or PO3. I am currently using the typical 2 Part BRS dosing with a DOS/DDR. That is working well and has for 4 or 5 years.
    Now to the question though, I am considering the Triton method now and updating my Apex from the Classic Gold to the new controller and getting on board with all the new Apex Ca/Alk/MG tester coming. Thanks to a small group setting chat with Tom Dachille of Neptune at my local LFS last night (Ocean Rift Aquatics) I am now almost 100% on board with all of this.

    Here is my question that I should have asked last night. Since my sump is a basement one and I have approx 25' of head pressure (currently running a Pan World 200PS) it is nearly impossible to get the desired 10x per hour flow through the sump/refugium and Display Tank. If I was to guess I am probably at 5 to 6 times. (My first purchase will be to get the FMK so I can get a better idea of the true flow.) My question is this, can I get away with 5 or 6X through the sump back up to the DT or can I simply setup a DC high volume pump to re-circulate water from the last chamber in the sump back to the first chamber to effectively get to 10X through the refugium even though I would still only be getting 5X back through the display tank?
     
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  2. Jaculus

    Jaculus Active Member R2R Supporter

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  3. JoshH

    JoshH Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I would think upgrading your return is your best bet TBH... not that its a cheap option... with the recirculation method you're still technically only getting half the desired turnover of the display as the water isn't coming from the display.
     
  4. Jaculus

    Jaculus Active Member R2R Supporter

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    Thanks,the issue though is that it's so cost prohibitive to try to get 2000gph into a display tank with 15' of return line from a basement to a display tank up one floor. The power consumption of the PanWorld 200PS I am using now hurts enough. Also, the heat produced by these larger AC pumps is often a consideration. While I can make small adjustments to the pump plumbing etc that would still not get close to the desired 10X.

    Ryan at BRS replied to the original post with

    The turn over is really just related to heating and filtering the water. I don't think 10x return is going to keep much of anything in suspension in the tank or sump, it just isn't that high velocity. You probably only need more than a few times turn over to heat it. Filter stocks will obviously have better performance with doubling or tripling the passes. The Carbon and GFO or other filter media will almost certainly achieve their daily goals in a just a few passes an hour as well. Since the skimmer has a fixed flow rate I guess I don't see incredible gains by increasing the flow rate through that chamber as well. I am sure that getting 10x would increase performance on all of these elements but by what degree and how much are you willing to spend?

    On a Triton system, they don't always say why they do things a certain way so we can only guess but I can see some potential benefits to a true 10x. First, with Triton I think we are transitioning from the fuge being a supportive filter to being the primary filter, not only is the fuge responsible for a majority of the nitrate and phosphate reduction there is a very reasonable chance the algae may actually prefer ammonia as it's nitrogen source. So this is a critical filter and unlike media reactors and skimmers which often have fixed flow rates regardless of sump turn over, the return pump and overflows are the feed to this important filter. So I would think of it as passing the system water volume through a specific filter 10x an hour which is a real thing rather than just 5-10x sump turn over which is a guideline without out much thought to the system or equipment in it.

    I think in some ways this gets to the heart of why some reefers have success with "methods" and others don't. So often each component of the method gets debated and the individual reefer ends up passing on elements or adjusting it in a variety of ways. The net result is no longer the Triton method, it's "Ryan's method". For this discussion, I would say if you decided to change the method to your own desires and run 3x turn over and don't have the desired success I would certainly consider following the actual 10x recommendation for the primary filter before determining if the method works for you. It might be that 10x turn over is not possible and you just need to do your best and adjust or try something different. There are a lot of system designs and methods that work :)

    I am going to try this. While my setup will not be any scientific test since I have no control subject I suspect that others have accomplished the Triton effect by doing this similar approach by having 10X turnover in the Refugium section while only having 3 to 5 times of that going through the display tank. I was hoping that someone would have some points or direction on how they accomplished this and if there really were definite or realized disadvantages to doing it this way.
     
  5. JoshH

    JoshH Well-Known Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Looks like you might be the true Tester of this theory then, I hope it does work for you and I agree in your situation youre kind of stuck between a rock and a rather costly hard place.
     
  6. Jaculus

    Jaculus Active Member R2R Supporter

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    Well, not a tester but I will obviously update with my results. Still looking for anyone else that has TRIED running only a portion of their flow through the DT with the rest recirculating through the Refugium
     
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