Simon Forkel's "Bio-Chambers"

#1
I liked the term "Bio-Chamber" and decided to use it in my description. Not that I have read Mr. Forkel refers to his idea that way. So I'll coin it here and now (the term).

Several days back I thought I saw an interesting setup in one of our Simon Forkel threads (or it could have been on his website).
In the photograoh I observed an aquarium that had a divider of what could be glass or acrylic at the rightmost end (say 6 inches from right end glass). This divider creates a sort of biochamber against the right wall of the tank. It is perforated (don't remember the size of the holes) near the bottom and has a powerhead (maybe more than one) that suctions water from within the biochamber and pumps it back out into the main aquarium area from over the top of the divider. The biochamber is of course, filled with Mr. Forkel's biomedia of choice (???).

I am hoping Dirk and Phil can give us a little more insight if they remember this, having visited Mr. Forkel.

Ed
God listens. He may not always give you everything you want, when you want it; but he always gives you what you really need, when you need it most!
E.R.

re: Simon Forkel's "Bio-Chambers"

#2
Was I hallucinating? Can't find it anywhere.

The concept is similar to a sponge mat divider filter, but with an actual solid perforated divider that holds the media in place.

Ed
God listens. He may not always give you everything you want, when you want it; but he always gives you what you really need, when you need it most!
E.R.

re: Simon Forkel's "Bio-Chambers"

#4
It may not be perforated... I had a quick look at it hoping to find it later and have a better look... but I haven't been able to find it. Not that there was too much to see... but it was interesting.

On second thought, one needs to think of the pros and cons of these internal biofilters and I can't help imagining what would happen if the power went out for several hours... So then, I would prefer a canister or trickle filter having the choice.

The dying bacteria would deplete the oxygen very quickly inside the aquarium whereas in a canister filter, the damage would be mostly inside the biofilter with the death of the bacterial colonies and the fish would have somewhat more time before they consume the oxygen in the aquarium. I think a trickle filter would suffer lesser harm and the suffocation of the colony would be slower and once water is pumping again, recolonization would be much faster.

Any thoughts?

Ed

Ed
God listens. He may not always give you everything you want, when you want it; but he always gives you what you really need, when you need it most!
E.R.

re: Simon Forkel's "Bio-Chambers"

#5
If it's without perforations then I'm pretty sure it's an Internal Overflow Sump (IOS), which is essentially what you describe - an area partitioned within the tank (either side or back) where media sits and a pump will pump water back into the tank. It's similar in concept to a number of nano "All in One" tanks you see (e.g. the JBJ 24 gallon), except that with the nano, the IOS is concealed at the back with a false background instead of by the side. The IOS system is common here in Singapore where people keep arowana in 2 tier rack systems and thus have no space for canisters/normal sumps/overhead filters.

Generally speaking, I think the volume of water in the tank itself is usually much larger than the amount of space used by the IOS. Hence, I don't feel that oxygen depletion is going to be that huge a concern since the large volume of water dilutes the "bad stuff". With canisters, I feel that things go bad more quickly and the bad stuff is really concentrated. When the power goes back on, the concentrated filthy water is shot direct into the tank and fish that get in contact with the flow (and I would think the natural instinct of fish would be to rush to the region of high flow) might be more affected than if the water as a whole were to slowly degenerate?

Also, with canisters, as the system is closed, oxygen is depleted extremely quickly and things go foul inside. With a sump (both IOS and a normal under tank one), oxygen exchange still takes place to some extent as usually the sump is expose to air/not sealed. This would slow down the depletion of oxygen considerably.

The slowing down of oxygen depletion coupled with the "dilution effect" makes me feel that sumps overall are better filtration than canisters, with of course "normal" sumps being the best.
cron