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Hello, I'm new to AP/PP and haven't read through all the treads on PP, there is a ton of great info here! 

I tested my fresh urine this morning and came up with 0ppm Ammonia, 0ppm Nitrates and 7-8ppm Nitrates.  I'm using the single liquid tests from API.  The Nitrates turned a darker yellow than the urine, I'm assuming no color change would be 0 ppm.  

Does this test sound accurate?  I understand human pee can vary greatly by food/liquids consumed, time of day, physical activity.  Just wondering if anyone else has tested their urine and what the results were? 

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Fresh urine is not the same thing as fresh humonia.

What you have is urine (urea).

The urea (urine) needs to be sealed up and given time (about 4 weeks) to hydrolyze into ammonia. Only then is it "humonia".

Only after the urea has converted into ammonia will you want to use it as a source of nutrients in your system.

If you use urine (NOT humonia) in your system, and use your test kit to test for ammonia, your test will read ZERO for ammonia...because there isn't any. Your ammonia test kit is made to test for ammonia and not urea.

Once the urea has been given a chance to convert to ammonia (in a closed bottle for about a month) and is added to your system, it is then subject to the same process of biological oxidation (by your bacteria) to nitrites, then to nitrates...just like any other source of ammonia would be. 

You don't want to ever add any fresh urine (urea) to any systems.

http://community.theaquaponicsource.com/forum/topics/the-stank-farm...

Urea in urine is converted to ammonia by Heterotrophic bacterial enzyme urease. These bacteria are existed in the growing bed, plants can absorb ammonia through their roots, some ammonia is oxidized to nitites then to nitrate by the Autotrophic bacteria Nitrosomonas and Nitrobacter, Plants use Nitrates more efficient than Ammonia for their metabolism.

There are some Nitrate  found in urine.

Right, but the shitty part about using it in a bio-ponic system in that form (urea), is that most people cannot test for it...therefor they tend to over do it with the dosing...They add, then test NH3/4...not seeing anything, they add more...and more...and more.

Then when all that urea finally begins to hydrolyze into ammonia, they end up with a smelly, toxic soup in which nitrifying bacteria cannot survive 

(like what happened to the gentleman in the linked thread at the bottom of my previous post...quite common amongst people who dose their systems with fresh urine, instead of aged urine)...

Thanks Vlad and Safwat,

yes I did read about the time bomb effect of over adding urea to a PP system.  I was surprised to find nitrates in my urine, so now I know that's ok.  Ace hardware 1 gallon of pure 10% ammonia hydroxide is $5.36 US.  That would probably be the equivalent of a lot of aged urine! 

I've started a fishless 25 gallon tank to cycle Nitrogen indoors.  When that cycle is going good I plan to dump it into a 250 gallon tote the end of Feb and get the tote ready for my PP source.  My system will be in an unheated greenhouse, but I can heat the 250 gallon tote to keep the NO4 cycle going. 

When the nitrate water leaves the tote it will go to a 500 gallon holding tank to recirculate through grow beds.  The temp of the holding tank will be like 40 F until summer gets here.  Does cooling the nitrate water down make it less effective?  The grow beds will also be like 35 F until the end of March, so they will grow slower anyway. 

Yeah, there's some nitrates...and calcium, potassium, magnesium, zinc, phosphates and a host of other essential elements in there as well...

You'll be surprised at just how strong humonia really is...It should only take about 250ml (less than 8.45oz) to get 300 gallons of water to an ammonia level of 2ppm

Yes, the cold temps slow down things down. Most any metabolic process' slow down with cool temps...even (most) microbes...

This is all so fascinating.  It looks to me like humonia would mimic the full range of nutrients from fish excrement after solid waste is removed. I guess there are many ways to achieve natural nutrient rich plant food which this forum caters to.  How much temp increase would speed up the urine hydrolyzing into ammonia?  I can safely store a closed bottle of urine above a heater at 85-90F, 30-35C.  Can humonia be stored at cool temps say 40F/5C?  If it can this would be a nice way to keep a supply on hand.

I like experimental results and appreciate your figures for the amount humonia used in 300 gal of water.  It makes sense to use humonia for the nutrient value vs 10% ammonia hydroxide to produce nitrates.  I think I'll store 16 oz urine at 85-90F to see how quickly it will hydrolyze. 

Vlad Jovanovic said:

Yeah, there's some nitrates...and calcium, potassium, magnesium, zinc, phosphates and a host of other essential elements in there as well...

You'll be surprised at just how strong humonia really is...It should only take about 250ml (less than 8.45oz) to get 300 gallons of water to an ammonia level of 2ppm

Yes, the cold temps slow down things down. Most any metabolic process' slow down with cool temps...even (most) microbes...

Vlad, how does the presence of these other nutrients you mention affect the need or use of the struvite?

Thanks
Bobby

Hi Bobby,

The struvite is just a good way to be able to add phosphorus and magnesium without having to add quite all that nitrogen.

It's akin to taking a 1 part nutrient (humonia), splitting it off into 2 and rearranging where those essential elements will be found. (and in what amount in relation to one another)...so you end up with 3 substances at your disposal the struvite, the liquid effluent left over after making the struvite...and your straight humonia.

It's (struvite) most helpful if growing fruiting cultivars...and not so much if your only growing lettuces.

Ok, gotcha, thanks.  Struvite still useful for just the flowering aspect while leaving the excess N out.

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