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Activated carbon & "fertilizer" adsorption
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unissuh
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Joined: 29 Mar 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: 2011.02.25(Fri)23:53    Post subject: Activated carbon & "fertilizer" adsorption Reply with quote

Following on from this:

DaleJr wrote:
AC (Activated Carbon) has not been proven to remove or not remove traces. AC is only active for a limited amount of time (I give it a month) after that it is worthless. Now in saying that..I use Purigen (the bag) in my canister. It is rechargeable up to I think 3 times.


unissuh wrote:
What do you mean that it is not proven trace elements can be removed by carbon? This is, as far as I know, a well proven fact and it is used for this purpose scientifically, admittedly not in aquarium settings. It does however, depend on the type of carbon you have & the pore size present which can be quite variable depending on source of carbon.

I'd also be thinking that it runs out a lot quicker than 1 month, to be honest I'd be pretty surprised if it went longer than a week.


DaleJr wrote:

I will quote a few others where this debate has occured.

Quote:
The answer is a definitive - maybe. Or - occasionally. Or - as needed. While the question seems simple, an answer depends on too many variables.

On the whole, carbon isn't needed in the filter of a healthy planted tank.

As to carbon striping fertilizer from the water, I've challenged people to provide something other than anecdotal tales, and gotten no citations of any research supporting the theory. I work in a university research library. I have access to subject librarians. The university happens to have a fish lab and we happen to have more fish related literature and journal access than most.

There is a lot of data on what carbon or charcoal will do to or for water in tanks. There is lots of data about what happens to carbon over time, in tank filters. The important take away from those studies is that carbon stops being useful after some period of time. A time period that varies depending on the type of carbon and what it is derived from.

If you want a personal take, I use an AmmoCarb mix in new tank setups if I'm going to put fish in before I'm sure the tank has fully cycled. For example, I have a fresh tank setup with filter squeezings from a mature filter and a used sponge in the AquaClear filter. I'll be moving mature air driven sponge filters in there as well.
Tomorrow, I'll be putting a couple of dozen CPDs in that tank. A bag of AmmoCarb in the filter basket and a few drops of Prime each day will help ensure the health of the fish. There will also be a piece of Poly Bio Marine Poly-Filter
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DaleJr
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Joined: 16 Feb 2010
Location: Memphis, TN

PostPosted: 2011.02.28(Mon)15:41    Post subject: Reply with quote

And that's a little of the problem..Most planted people KNOW that it removes traces of Nitrates and this is why we/they replace it either by dry ferts or in my case Seachem Nitrogen.
There is no doubt that in the effective time of AC (let say a week) it might pick up some traces and micronutrients but there hasn't been anything stating that ALL traces and micronutrients were removed by AC.
When one is EI dosing there is plenty of ferts that get through.
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unissuh
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Joined: 29 Mar 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: 2011.02.28(Mon)17:06    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hang on, I thought you were saying there was zero evidence for adsorption of fertilizer. Razz

Does it really matter whether carbon takes up all traces or not? If it adsorbs one, that is sufficient to cause a deficiency symptom when it's depleted. In which case, someone will typically dose all traces in one hit; I don't know a single person who doses traces individually.

Agreed that I can't see high light dosing systems being affected much at all, whether the case is the same in low light systems (note, not all low light systems are nutrient poor), I don't know. Low light systems most commonly lack traces rather than macronutrients, so constantly running carbon might not be a great idea.
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DaleJr
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Location: Memphis, TN

PostPosted: 2011.03.01(Tue)8:58    Post subject: Reply with quote

unissuh wrote:
Hang on, I thought you were saying there was zero evidence for adsorption of fertilizer. Razz


Hang on though....lol Isnt Nitrogen/Nitrates a product of fish waste? So then should it be classify as Fertilizer? In THIS setting, regarding the fuction of AC.

If one has a planted tank, with good of stock fish will you not have positive readings when you test your Nitrates? I do even WITH new AC, yes it will capture some of the nitrates (as the products states IT will LOWER nitrates) So then one would add a tiny amount of Nitrogen to compensate for the "reduction" not removal.

This going back to the philosphy that one should not use AC because it "REMOVES" traces. However if you were to say "REDUCE" then I would be on board.

Diademhill = "Take out the carbon. It is not need routinely and will remove trace elements the plants need."

Unissuh = "What do you mean that it is not proven trace elements can be removed by carbon?"
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unissuh
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Joined: 29 Mar 2005
Location: Melbourne, Australia

PostPosted: 2011.03.01(Tue)16:46    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ahhh I see what you are saying, so we are both saying much the same thing. When I read what diademhill & myself have said, we are both saying carbon is capable of removing elements that can be considered as fertilizer, not necessarily all of it. You think we were saying carbon will completely remove "fertilizers", which is certainly not what I meant. Very Happy
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DaleJr
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PostPosted: 2011.03.02(Wed)14:45    Post subject: Reply with quote

AGREED..


Especially with dosing EI Method everyday the water column gets all the traces and macros needed with AC in place.
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coryfan
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PostPosted: 2011.03.04(Fri)20:51    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting subject, thanks for posting it!
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