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Old 12-27-2004, 11:09 PM   #1
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'Fuge lighting

Planning a 30 gal refugium with 18" in the middle for caulepra and other macros.

Does the algae require any special lighting? I have heard conflicting ideas about using freshwater lights, NO lights for plants from gardening store and then even PCs.

What do most folks use? I only need 18" covered and its in my stand so looks dont matter that much, but as always cost does.
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Old 12-28-2004, 10:03 AM   #2
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I have a new CPR Refugium that has NO lights.
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Old 12-28-2004, 10:14 AM   #3
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What is the wattage and K of your NO light?
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Old 12-28-2004, 11:10 AM   #4
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The wattage is not that important as long as the fuge is not too deep. The main concern is the kelvin rating. If you can find a decent NO striplight and a bulb in the range of 10,000k your good to go. Lower kelvin rated bulbs (<7100k) are more to the red spectrum which will promote nuisance alages.

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Old 12-28-2004, 11:54 AM   #5
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Lower kelvin rated bulbs (<7100k) are more to the red spectrum which will promote nuisance alages
Steve,
So a 50/50 would not be a good choice for a fuge, or does the actinic balance the 6700k white?
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Old 12-28-2004, 01:04 PM   #6
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The actinic will not balance the 6700k, the light spectrum will continue to be emitted. The 03 spectrum just gives the "visual" appearance of balance. If your speaking of PC bulbs, 50/50's come in 10k as well.

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Old 12-28-2004, 01:05 PM   #7
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most 50/50's I see are 10,000k/Actinic...not a 6700K/Actinic.
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Old 12-28-2004, 01:07 PM   #8
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I thought the refugium lighting should be more in the lower kelvin range 5-7000 because the alga uses chlorophyll instead of the zooxathellae (sp?) in corals.

I thought wattage stimulated more growth. Numerous exmaples on the website of growth improving with higher watts.
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Old 12-28-2004, 01:07 PM   #9
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They actually come in both, although lower wattage 50/50 bulbs are typically 10k.

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Old 12-28-2004, 01:28 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sipe
I thought the refugium lighting should be more in the lower kelvin range 5-7000 because the alga uses chlorophyll instead of the zooxathellae (sp?) in corals.
All algaes (which are not true vascular plants) usually contain some form of chlorophyll (usually a & c) . Zooxanthellae is made up of dinoflagellates which also contains chloroplyll. All requiring some sort of photosynthesis to survive. With macro algaes specifically, they tend to prefer the higher spectrum (450ish nm) with some red spetrum in the mix. With the higher spectrum you can control which algaes dominate over the lesser micro algaes which will fluorish in lower red spectrum outputs. It's just a matter of controlling which you are trying to propogate.

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I thought wattage stimulated more growth. Numerous exmaples on the website of growth improving with higher watts.
It really depends on the specific species of algae. In general it's safe to say a majority will do well in non typical reef lighting. They are increadibley adaptive and can do equally well in 1-2 watts/gal upto 4. Spending a whack of $$ on lighting for a refugium is not necessary.

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Old 12-28-2004, 08:49 PM   #11
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As the Odyssea I got from Aquatraders.com on Friday broke on Sunday I called HelloLights to order a replacement. I ended up getting a 28w Coralife. It comes with a 50/50 (10k/03) but the rep said that he swapped it out for his fuge with a 6700k and has had much better results with his macro (cheato/grape/caulerpa).

I had him send the 6700k along with the fixture so I could test this myself.
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Old 12-28-2004, 08:55 PM   #12
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I'm planning a grow light from Menards for mine. From what I've read, it isn't that major.
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Old 12-28-2004, 09:01 PM   #13
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I've got calls pending to lightbulb manufacturers on the temperature (kelvin) of their various bulbs. Most grow lights it seems are in the 2-4000K range.

Unfortunately it seems there is no hard evidence to the refuge lighting question. I am also probably going to buy the 20" corallife 28watt PCs. For $35 its probably the cheapest part of my system.
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Old 12-28-2004, 10:30 PM   #14
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For $35 its probably the cheapest part of my system.
LOL. I know what you mean!
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Old 12-29-2004, 05:22 PM   #15
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A simple PVC rack is easy to make to hold a pair of 20 watt NO bulbs. They'll look butt ugly but they'll grow marine Algae very well. Lights of America makes a 65watt PC that's cheap and works very well too.
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Old 12-29-2004, 05:40 PM   #16
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The lights of america bulbs all seem to be 2800K temp or so regardless of the wattage which seems low for a refugium, but thanks for the idea
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Old 12-29-2004, 07:55 PM   #17
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The one I use is 6500K but you're confusing Kelvin color with light spectrum. Spectrum determines the suitability for algae photosynthesis, not Kelvin Color.
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Old 12-29-2004, 08:57 PM   #18
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Unless I'm mistaken Color temperature (Kelvin), will also describe the color emitted by the light. The lower the number the more orange/yellow/red. The higher the number the more blue/violet the light spectrum emitted. Color temperature is directly related to the spectrum of colors the bulb will emit.

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Old 12-29-2004, 09:09 PM   #19
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Everyone thanks for the input!!!

Bang Guy, I checked Reef Aquarium Vol 1 and Kelvin colour temperture is directly related to wavelength. They are different measures of same thing. Thus the lower a Kelvin temp the more red wavelength is available and the more algae that likes the red end of spectrum will grow.

But it sounds like refugiums may not require the higher wavelengths of light to work. What model number was the light of America bulb?

$35 for a 28 watt coralife 50/50 bulb sounds cheap and if it work better then on the tank it goes
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Old 12-29-2004, 10:46 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve-s
The higher the number the more blue/violet the light spectrum emitted.
Please compare the spectral output of the 6500K Iwasaki 250 watt Mercury Vapor bulb and the 20,000K Osram 250 watt Metal Halide Bulb. You will see that the Iwasaki bulb produces more light in the blue/violet spectrum than the Osram and yet the Kelvin color is far lower. This is because Kelvin is just the final color of all the mixed wavelengths of light.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sipe
Bang Guy, I checked Reef Aquarium Vol 1 and Kelvin colour temperture is directly related to wavelength.
They are related but they are far from the same thing. Kelvin Color is dependent on the mix of all the different light wavelengths emitted by the bulb. Electromagnetic spectrum is measuten by the wavelength of the light in nanometers (NM). The color of the bulb (mix) is what's measured in Kelvin degrees.

A bulb ideally suited for growing algae would be a mix of blue spectrum (~450nm) and red spectrum (~670nm) light. These are the two photosynthetic peaks. Please forgive me if the actual numbers are slightly different, this is from memory but it will suffice to make the point. This mix would produce a greenish, yellowish light around 5000K on the Kelvin Scale but the amount of blue vs red could send the color almost anywhere on the scale from 2000K if mostly red up to 20,000K if it were mostly blue. A bulb emitting a single wavelength of light around say 570nm would would also be about 5500K on the Kelvin scale but it will be almost useless for growing algae.

So, spectrum is important, the Kelvin color really isn't. The Kelvin color is very important for asthetic reasons though. Nobody wants a yellow looking reef no matter how healthy it makes your corals.
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