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How are you, Aquapons, heating your water?

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I know of some one who pumps heated water through tubing under his raft bed to heat things.  No reason why radiant heating of whatever form under tanks and beds won't work.
Joe-My understanding is that pex wont give the heat transfer that we are looking for. I am heating my systems with a outdoor wood boiler forced hot water system. The aluminum heat exchangers I was using (just coils that are in each tank) are no longer available so i am looking for another way of transferring heat. I believe pex is just thick and will not transfer heat well I think I am going to go with a shell and tube heat exchanger.

I received a quote from a company that said someone in Boulder is using  600 feet of PEX in a 1200 gallon fish tank and it works great and he was real happy with the set up.  I was hoping to find the person to get more details. I would think that 600 feet should be enough but it might be cheaper as you are pointing out to use a heat exchanger instead. I saw titanium heat exchangers for sale and they should work just as good as the aluminum ones you have.

Barney: What size tank do you have and what size exchanger do you have?


Barney Sponenberg said:

Joe-My understanding is that pex wont give the heat transfer that we are looking for. I am heating my systems with a outdoor wood boiler forced hot water system. The aluminum heat exchangers I was using (just coils that are in each tank) are no longer available so i am looking for another way of transferring heat. I believe pex is just thick and will not transfer heat well I think I am going to go with a shell and tube heat exchanger.
I am heating a 10,000 gallon system with 5 heat exchangers. the Heat exchangers are in the growout tanks. There are 2 in 2 3200 gallon tanks and 1 in a 2800 gallon tank. They are 1" tubing wrapped in a coil 6 times. Each tank is a seperate "zone" in the heating loop from the hot water heater and each have a temperature probe and zone valve. Titanium is definitely the way to go. It will last much longer than aluminum and will also hold up to salt water. Where did you see the titanium heat exchangers?

Joe Bifano said:

I received a quote from a company that said someone in Boulder is using  600 feet of PEX in a 1200 gallon fish tank and it works great and he was real happy with the set up.  I was hoping to find the person to get more details. I would think that 600 feet should be enough but it might be cheaper as you are pointing out to use a heat exchanger instead. I saw titanium heat exchangers for sale and they should work just as good as the aluminum ones you have.

Barney: What size tank do you have and what size exchanger do you have?


Barney Sponenberg said:

Joe-My understanding is that pex wont give the heat transfer that we are looking for. I am heating my systems with a outdoor wood boiler forced hot water system. The aluminum heat exchangers I was using (just coils that are in each tank) are no longer available so i am looking for another way of transferring heat. I believe pex is just thick and will not transfer heat well I think I am going to go with a shell and tube heat exchanger.

I went back to another post in this topic and it was from Aqualogic. So I went there again and found this link.

http://www.aqualogicinc.com/products/heat_exchangers/Titanium-Heat-...

They have both kinds.  I have sent them an email but no response for over a week.  I will try again.

What size hot water heater do you have in BTU's? Could you help me in getting the needed parts to set this up?

Barney Sponenberg said:
I am heating a 10,000 gallon system with 5 heat exchangers. the Heat exchangers are in the growout tanks. There are 2 in 2 3200 gallon tanks and 1 in a 2800 gallon tank. They are 1" tubing wrapped in a coil 6 times. Each tank is a seperate "zone" in the heating loop from the hot water heater and each have a temperature probe and zone valve. Titanium is definitely the way to go. It will last much longer than aluminum and will also hold up to salt water. Where did you see the titanium heat exchangers?


Joe-SOrry for calling it a "hot water heater". I am using an outdoor wood boiler to heat the water and the air in the greenhouse. if you were to call the tech support line at aquatic ecosystems they will be able to tell you how many btu's you need based on desired water temperature and ambient air temperature. hope this helps.

My water is about 66 in my tank now at basement room temp and I would like tilapia to thrive in there. Should I raise my temp? I am also about to add a 55 barrel that acts as sort of a settling tank and to give me more water mass for less of a touchy system. Does this need addressed as I am trying to heat water if need be?

 

                 WWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

           BBBWBB                                                                       W

       B       W       Bwwwwww                                                           W

      B       W         B      G  wG GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG   W

      B                   B        G w                                                            G     W

      B                   B           GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG      W

      B                   B                                                           WWWWW

      B                   B           FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFWFFF

       B                 B            F                                              W    F

          BBBBBBB               F                                            W   F

                                        FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF

OK the little w's reresent the water flowing off the top of my new barrel (B) and into the growbed (G)idea.

the big W's are the water being pumped out of the fish tank (F) and into the barrel (B)

The reason  I have it set up this way and not pumping from a bottom sump and having my fish tank be a constant height, is I don't want to trust a siphon or put a hole in my glass fish tank. It is not put together yet so any warnings may still apply.      thanks all!

Adam-Depends on how fast your are trying to grow the fish. Tilapia will certainly survive at 66 but would prefer warmer. I heat my water to 70 in the winter. The plants also appreciate the water being a little warmer. If you could maybe scan and copy a picture of your design I could probably get a better idea of how you are planning on setting it up and possibly be able to give some suggestions. 

Adam Shivers said:

My water is about 66 in my tank now at basement room temp and I would like tilapia to thrive in there. Should I raise my temp? I am also about to add a 55 barrel that acts as sort of a settling tank and to give me more water mass for less of a touchy system. Does this need addressed as I am trying to heat water if need be?

 

                 WWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

           BBBWBB                                                                       W

       B       W       Bwwwwww                                                           W

      B       W         B      G  wG GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG   W

      B                   B        G w                                                            G     W

      B                   B           GGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG      W

      B                   B                                                           WWWWW

      B                   B           FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFWFFF

       B                 B            F                                              W    F

          BBBBBBB               F                                            W   F

                                        FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF

OK the little w's reresent the water flowing off the top of my new barrel (B) and into the growbed (G)idea.

the big W's are the water being pumped out of the fish tank (F) and into the barrel (B)

The reason  I have it set up this way and not pumping from a bottom sump and having my fish tank be a constant height, is I don't want to trust a siphon or put a hole in my glass fish tank. It is not put together yet so any warnings may still apply.      thanks all!

I will be using a biomass boiler and steam engine for heating and generating the electrical.  I will be running the exhaust steam through piping in the tanks, then back to a condenser to be reused in the boiler, Steam that runs through an engine cant mix with the tank water because it contains lubricant for the engine.  It is a closed system, but the heat radiating from the piping will be sufficient for heating and can be rerouted with a valve during warmer weather.  The "waste heat" from the boiler will pass through a heat exchanger and ducted into the greenhouse during cold weather and outside during warm weather.

 I suggest you use the heat to both heat the greenhouse and the water.  The air temp needs to be close to the water temp so you dont experience major temp drop through the circulation process.  If you are using a comercially manufactured boiler, it would be best to use a hydronic system of tubes either in the bottom of the tank or under the liner, depending on the type of tank you have.  The tubing is relatively easy to bend and is plastic coated. They may have a heat exchanger also to warm the ambient air temp., if not it wouldnt be hard to adapt one to the exhaust of the boiler before it goes outside.

Two Jay said:

I plan on incorporating Solar, sometime in the near future, somewhere in the greenhouse. We are leaning towards biomass heat - corn, cherry pits, wood pellets etc, hooked to a boiler to heat the FT. One question I have with this method is, do we run hydronic heating tubes such as Pex in the FT or do we run cool water into a water heater, of sorts, and jet the hot water into the FT? Does that make sense? Anyone have experience with this? The FT's are approximately 6400 gallons, combined, plus a few DWC systems that are approximately 3300 gallons...so a bit of water.

Wolfenhawke said:
There are a couple of green methods but need some real life testing. One is to store heat in a tank that is heated from solar piping. Need to experiment with solution in the tank that stores the heat. Something with a high specific heat. You know, potatoes keep their heat for a long time, so I was thinking of a starch solution, with a preservative like formaldahyde to keep it from going bad. You would use pipes in that solution to get the heat back out.

Second method could be car battery with solar panel. My thinking is that in my area, I need at most 6 hours per day for night time heating without recharging from the sun. The big 1000 watt heaters are recommended for 160+ gallon tanks. So, that is 1kW*hr * 6 hours or 6kWHrs. At 110V that's 54amp hours of charge. Let's triple that for losses in the inverter and others, and we get about 160 Amp hours of charge. This is within the charge holding capability of a battery. Problem is the charging. Even with the high end solar panels that seems to be 3 large panels at 10 hours of light to charge up. Maybe solar charging in addition to mains charging.

Anyway, needs some field work and testing....
yea and if you let the air temp drop too much, you will get lots of evaporation which will then condense on the inside of the greenhouse and freeze and block much of the light into the greenhouse perhaps even freezing the doors shut.  So yes, best to heat both the water and the air.
Two Jay - right now i have coil heat exchangers in my fish tanks. The problem is they are no longer readily available. They stopped carrying them in aquatic ecosystems in 2009 and i can not find anything anywhere. I will most likely be installing a shell and tube heat exchanger. Pex doesnt allow for enough heat transfer. If you can find some metal coils (aluminum, stainless, or titanium) that is the cheapest way to go. What sort of budget do you have? A shell and tube heat exchanger is easier to set up and more efficient if you have constant flow in your system.

Rick Stillwagon said:

I will be using a biomass boiler and steam engine for heating and generating the electrical.  I will be running the exhaust steam through piping in the tanks, then back to a condenser to be reused in the boiler, Steam that runs through an engine cant mix with the tank water because it contains lubricant for the engine.  It is a closed system, but the heat radiating from the piping will be sufficient for heating and can be rerouted with a valve during warmer weather.  The "waste heat" from the boiler will pass through a heat exchanger and ducted into the greenhouse during cold weather and outside during warm weather.

 I suggest you use the heat to both heat the greenhouse and the water.  The air temp needs to be close to the water temp so you dont experience major temp drop through the circulation process.  If you are using a comercially manufactured boiler, it would be best to use a hydronic system of tubes either in the bottom of the tank or under the liner, depending on the type of tank you have.  The tubing is relatively easy to bend and is plastic coated. They may have a heat exchanger also to warm the ambient air temp., if not it wouldnt be hard to adapt one to the exhaust of the boiler before it goes outside.

Two Jay said:

I plan on incorporating Solar, sometime in the near future, somewhere in the greenhouse. We are leaning towards biomass heat - corn, cherry pits, wood pellets etc, hooked to a boiler to heat the FT. One question I have with this method is, do we run hydronic heating tubes such as Pex in the FT or do we run cool water into a water heater, of sorts, and jet the hot water into the FT? Does that make sense? Anyone have experience with this? The FT's are approximately 6400 gallons, combined, plus a few DWC systems that are approximately 3300 gallons...so a bit of water.

Wolfenhawke said:
There are a couple of green methods but need some real life testing. One is to store heat in a tank that is heated from solar piping. Need to experiment with solution in the tank that stores the heat. Something with a high specific heat. You know, potatoes keep their heat for a long time, so I was thinking of a starch solution, with a preservative like formaldahyde to keep it from going bad. You would use pipes in that solution to get the heat back out.

Second method could be car battery with solar panel. My thinking is that in my area, I need at most 6 hours per day for night time heating without recharging from the sun. The big 1000 watt heaters are recommended for 160+ gallon tanks. So, that is 1kW*hr * 6 hours or 6kWHrs. At 110V that's 54amp hours of charge. Let's triple that for losses in the inverter and others, and we get about 160 Amp hours of charge. This is within the charge holding capability of a battery. Problem is the charging. Even with the high end solar panels that seems to be 3 large panels at 10 hours of light to charge up. Maybe solar charging in addition to mains charging.

Anyway, needs some field work and testing....

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