• Check out the new Avast Marine Vibe Reactor

    Avast Marine has been working on their automatic zeolith reactor for close to 2 years.  After several attempts and near misses they have come up with a production model worthy of shaking up Zeolith and other reactor media.  They are available and in stock at Aquarium Specialty at a starting price tag of $379.99.  Attach the Avast Marine Vibe to a timer or your favorite aquarium controller for a periodic shaking and walla, no more pumping or manually shaking your rocks off.  Now available in 2 liter and 4 liter sizes.

    Now through October 31st…If you buy a Avast Marine Vibe from Aquarium Specialty and send in a 2 minute video of the Vibe in action then you will receive a $50.00 store credit for sending the video to Aquarium Specialty.  You must purchase the Vibe from Aquarium Specialty to recieve the $50.00 credit.

    Avast Marine Vibe Reactor

    About the Avast Marine Vibe…

    Filtration media maintenance is one of those aquarium chores that is so easily procrastinated, but often makes a major difference in water quality when performed correctly and timely. Nearly every type of commonly used chemical filtration media suffers from some form of performance degradation when left unmaintained for too long. Most chemical medias, such as carbon, are granular in form, and when exposed to ideal flow rates, become undesirable detritus traps. They can also become covered in bacterial film which limits the ability of water to pass through their pores, reducing efficiency or lifespan. Zeolites are specially selected to grow this bacterial film (or mulm), and need to be stirred up multiple times per day to remove this slime and keep them running at peak efficiency. Granular Ferric Oxide (aka GFO; phosphate adsorbtion media) can form clumps over time, with water channeling though paths of least resistance, resulting in poor usage of the media.

    The first solution that often comes to mind is to simply increase the flow rate in a bottom-up fluidizing media reactor.  The problems with this approach are several.  Most of the media we use, such as carbon, GFO, and zeolites, are designed to be used at slow flow rates in order to maximize water contact time.  More importantly, carbon and GFO are typically highly friable, meaning they can break apart into small dust-sized particles if allowed to fluidize too strongly.  This dust can make a mess in an aquarium, and, in the case of carbon, has even been implicated in head and lateral line erosion (HLLE) in marine fish.

    What is needed is a system of periodic agitation, calibrated so that media particles are cleansed, yet without being blown everywhere and making a mess.  Our Vibe reactor solves this problem nicely, using a special vibration-inducing assembly to gently turn and agitate media while loosening detritus and bacterial films.  The Vibe is not meant to be run continuously, but, like our Swabbie, activated for a minute or so several times per day.  This short cycle is all that is needed to ensure nothing unwanted ever gets a chance to build up in the media bed, sort of like quickly wiping your aquarium glass with a cleaning magnet six times per day.  The short duty cycle and correctly calibrated vibration frequency and amplitude also ensures that friable media aren’t destroyed during cleaning.

    Applications for the Vibe include the above-mentioned carbon, GFO, and zeolite reactors, as well as calcium reactors and kalkwasser reactors.  The following video shows an existing calcium reactor with approximately 4-month-old media getting its detritus “vibed” out.  Even with its slow water throughput, this calcium reactor was completely flushed clear of any visible detritus after about a week of automated Vibe usage.

    Technical Data:
    Chamber dimensions: 8″ tall, 6″ diameter
    Footprint: 9.5″ round
    Height: 15.5″
    Media capacity: 10 Cups / 2.5L
    Zeolite capacity: 2.5L
    Power: AC 120v 3w
    Warranty: 1 year