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For the last six months I have been trying to get a geyser pump working. After some trial and error I finnaly got what I was looking for. I got a pump which could move 200 gph without and moving parts and operates off of low air pressure, less than 15psi. It is similar to an airlift pump but you have more control over the output. An airlift pump uses an airstone within a pipe which is submerged. The bouancy of all the airbubbles lifts the water out in a sputtering fashion. A geyser pump works in bursts. An air cavity on the submerged pump uses air to displace the water within. When the cavity is full of air it ejects the entire single bubble into the pipe which lifts the entire column of water within. The water is forced out and the bubble pulls more water into the bottom to recharge. I have videos and photos coming. This is a great pump to use if you have and constant air supply such as a blower. The efficency and reliability outweight traditional pumps in my opinion.

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Let me know when you have it working and please share with me. I am trying the same thing with a air lift pump but not getting the lift I need. Thanks for sharing !!

 

To avoid a huge debate over the efficiency of airlifts/geyser pumps.

I'm now going to repeat a little section of what Shawn said

This is a great pump to use if you have and constant air supply such as a blower.


This is a very important bit of information to take into account before you get into a huge discussion about what kind of pump is more efficient. If you already are going to have a good air supply going anyway, you might be able to pump your water with it by airlift or geyser provided you are not lifting very high in relation to the depth of the fish tank. Thereby avoiding adding a separate water pump. Please don't expect a 20 watt air pump to lift the same amount of water as high as a 20 watt water pump can.

I guess that is what I was looking at is there a air pump that can generate enough lift to pump the water up to about 6' at 300 gph? I have a friend doing some test right now. Let us know if you have anything. Thanks !!



TCLynx said:

To avoid a huge debate over the efficiency of airlifts/geyser pumps.

I'm now going to repeat a little section of what Shawn said

This is a great pump to use if you have and constant air supply such as a blower.


This is a very important bit of information to take into account before you get into a huge discussion about what kind of pump is more efficient. If you already are going to have a good air supply going anyway, you might be able to pump your water with it by airlift or geyser provided you are not lifting very high in relation to the depth of the fish tank. Thereby avoiding adding a separate water pump. Please don't expect a 20 watt air pump to lift the same amount of water as high as a 20 watt water pump can.

geyser pumps have more chance of lifting water higher but the amount of water that air can lift is going to be directly related to the amount of pipe under the water above the air inlet to the airlift or geyser.

If you are needing to lift water 6 feet above the surface of the fish tank, you better have a fish tank that is more than 6 feet deep, and you will need an air pump that can push enough air down to the bottom of the fish tank (the deeper the water the more pressure it takes to push air down there.)  Generally at this point you will find a regular water pump is going to be more energy efficient and not as dependent on the depth of fish tank. 

 

There are plenty of under 50 watt water pumps that can give you more than 5 gallons per minute at 6 feet of head.

 

Airlifts are very efficient at lifting water just a tiny bit above the surface of a tank (you can see it if you put an air stone in the tank and you see a mound of bubbles coming up in the water, well that "mounding" of the bubbles is actually water being lifted above the surface.  However, as soon as you try to lift water above the surface of the tank, it is very heavy.  Air lifts are most efficient when you are just pumping around a system that is only 2-4" variation in height.  Not common in media based aquaponics.

These are all very good points. Air can only lift water so far. 300 gph and 6 feet of lift is outside of our testing parameters. We are using our pumps to move water in IBC totes which usually calls for less than three feet of lift above the water surface.

Thought I would chirp in here. I have ran dredges both suction and air lifts all over the world. What creates lift is not water level but air flow through the pipe and pipe dia. The smaller the pump the smaller the pipe. We use solar air pumps to lift water 300 feet out of the ground to fill water troughs in the desert here no problem. The pipe is 3/8 inch and lifts a small amount all day when the sunshines. Whatever you pick for a air pump you will have to match pipe size to the air volume. It will lift it 6 feet no problem. TC is correct in that you do need the pipe to be deep enough so the water and air rises vs blowing out the bottom. I have ran a air lift that had 150 scfm that ran a 10 inch dredge and we lifted rocks the size of volley balls from 150 foot deep to 150 foot above the ocean level. Air and water are very proficient together but TC is correct in that they dont match up to these new breed of pond pumps in water movement vs Watts.

The Huge advantage of airlift is exactly where David says, in lifting solids!  Now most of our fish solids in AP are not all that solids and most water pumps will move them no problem as long as the intake grill of the pump does get blocked by other debris but there could be advantages to not blending up the solids with a regular pump but lifting them a tiny bit hole by an airlift so they will settle better in some form of solids removal system.  The more blended up the solids are, the more likely they are to remain as suspended solids and be harder to remove from a system.  Not that big a deal in a media based system but it can be more of a problem in NFT or Raft systems.

 

So there is another very appropriate use for Airlift/geyser pumps, moving solids in a more intact manner to a solids removal system if you are using such a thing.

A geyser pump is different from an air lift in that a small pump can move water much higher than any typical airlift. It works by storing the air in a bladder until it reaches near full capacity, then all the air is allowed to escape in one burst letting it lift the volume of water in the pipe to the outlet.then the process repeates. 6ft lift would be no problem at all and they move solids great.

TCLynx said:

The Huge advantage of airlift is exactly where David says, in lifting solids!  Now most of our fish solids in AP are not all that solids and most water pumps will move them no problem as long as the intake grill of the pump does get blocked by other debris but there could be advantages to not blending up the solids with a regular pump but lifting them a tiny bit hole by an airlift so they will settle better in some form of solids removal system.  The more blended up the solids are, the more likely they are to remain as suspended solids and be harder to remove from a system.  Not that big a deal in a media based system but it can be more of a problem in NFT or Raft systems.

 

So there is another very appropriate use for Airlift/geyser pumps, moving solids in a more intact manner to a solids removal system if you are using such a thing.

The flow rate is correlated to the air flow rate, not really the amount of piping. Higher air flow, more pipe dumps per hour, higher flow.

Ryan said:
A geyser pump is different from an air lift in that a small pump can move water much higher than any typical airlift. It works by storing the air in a bladder until it reaches near full capacity, then all the air is allowed to escape in one burst letting it lift the volume of water in the pipe to the outlet.then the process repeates. 6ft lift would be no problem at all and they move solids great.

TCLynx said:

The Huge advantage of airlift is exactly where David says, in lifting solids!  Now most of our fish solids in AP are not all that solids and most water pumps will move them no problem as long as the intake grill of the pump does get blocked by other debris but there could be advantages to not blending up the solids with a regular pump but lifting them a tiny bit hole by an airlift so they will settle better in some form of solids removal system.  The more blended up the solids are, the more likely they are to remain as suspended solids and be harder to remove from a system.  Not that big a deal in a media based system but it can be more of a problem in NFT or Raft systems.

 

So there is another very appropriate use for Airlift/geyser pumps, moving solids in a more intact manner to a solids removal system if you are using such a thing.

Ryan,

    Do you know where one might find the info that would allow one to calculate how much air flow is needed and pipe size and all the different variables to lift a specific amount of water a given height per some time frame?

 

Even the Aquatic Eco catalog has an airlift pump section but they don't have any sort of "pump curves" in relation to air flow or height. (All they give on the airlifts are a Cfm range of air flow for lifting water 4" above the surface but they don't say how much water would be lifted.)  I've never found that info for geyser pumps either so I generally gave up.  I have this thing that I'm unwilling to buy a pump unless there is a pump curve or info about how much water it lifts to different heights and how much power it uses.

Hey Shawn et al,

Olomana Gardens (www.olomanagardens.com/moving-water-with-air/) has a nice website, and Glenn is becoming quite the expert on water geyser pumps.  He has been able to move as much as 1000 gph of water with his air pumps.  I need about 600 gph, and am currently using about 112 watts of power to run my water pump and aerator (I run a 950 gph pump with 42" height differential and a 20 watt dual output aerator).  Using the natural movement of the air upward fits perfectly with the needs of aquaponics hobbyists.  I plan to renovate my system to run from an air pump rather than a water pump.  I should be able to cut my power needs in half, which comes out to an annual savings of about $180 per year.  Doesn't seem like much, but after 5 years that's close to a grand total!  (we pay about 0.37/kwh for electricity).

I hope more AP folks start looking into air pumps for their water movement.  If you start your system that way, you will save money.

Jim

Hi, where can I find your video and design?

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