Aquaponic Gardening

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I have been working with air lifts in Aquaponics and wondering if anyone else is trying them. 

We first tried the air lifts to deal with a problem of theft at school locations. Submersible pumps were being stolen regularly. So we put the air pump in the class room, a super quiet model, and ran the air line out the upper window to the fish tank. We had to invent our own pump because we could not find a commercial model.

If anyone is interested I will email them our manual for building several models.

Some of the advantages are....much less electricity. 

The piping does not clog, like the filters on submersible pumps or external leaf filters.

The air lift picks up the fish solids and pumps them to the cinder bed were the Indian Blue worms eat the fish waste.

There is NO electricity in the water.

Since the air pump is located inside the building or a dry location, no GFI outlet is required.

The air pump super aerates the fish water on its way to the cinder. Most of our systems have no additional air pumps or air stones. 

We have never cleaned or had to clear a air lift pump. No clogs. 

The air lift is not bothered by sand or corrosive salt water or gritty water. Since we use volcanic cinder that gets sanded, this is a big deal.

We are pumping 150 gallons of water with 24 watt air pump, 24 inches high.

with a 38 watt, I can pump 300 gallons per hour at 24 inches head, and at 36 inches head only drop down to 200 gallons per hour. 

I will post some pictures ASAP.


Glenn Martinez

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Comment by Chris Carr on June 21, 2012 at 1:36pm

And to Glenn, that is some really cool work you have documented. Very much appreciated for sharing!

Comment by Chris Carr on June 21, 2012 at 1:33pm

Thanks Sylvia!

You can actually attach files to a blog post however. Glenn should be able to edit the original post and attach it as follows.

Comment by Sylvia Bernstein on June 21, 2012 at 1:27pm

Hi All.  Crazy that you can't attach a document to a blog comment, isn't it?  Glenn sent me his manual and I've attached it to this page for downloading =  Thanks, Glenn!  Your generosity is much appreciated.

Comment by Chris Carr on June 21, 2012 at 10:26am

I subscribe to all of the activity on this entire forum via RSS, but I must have missed it. Do you have a link handy Glenn?

Did you post pictures as well as you mentioned here?

Comment by Glenn Martinez on June 21, 2012 at 10:22am

Hey guys, the manual of drawings was posted over a week ago on the web site!  I thought you would be building them already!

Comment by JLS on June 20, 2012 at 7:42pm

Still waiting Glenn - looking forward to your manual!

Thank you!

Comment by Jennifer B on June 20, 2012 at 3:03pm

Aloha Glenn!  I'm interested in your manual, please send.  I'm also interested on trying to connect a pump to an alternative energy source like solar power.  And when is your next open house?  I went last year and loved your talks!  

Comment by Glenn Martinez on June 13, 2012 at 5:34am

I will ask Natalie to send those out tomorrow morning.

Comment by Scott Jumper on June 11, 2012 at 6:10pm

Hi Glen,  I have been wanting to do an air lift myself.  You might be able to save me a lot of time.  I would be appreciate it if you would send me a diagram.  Thanks

Comment by JLS on June 11, 2012 at 9:42am

Please email manual or post link. We are off-grid and current pump is draining solar/battery system. This sounds like exactly what we need! Thanks  

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