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The best light for your tank...


lakshwadeep

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http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2008/12/aafeature1

 

Debates about 'the best light' for illuminating reef aquaria have raged among hobbyists for years. There has been little doubt that corals, as a group, can adapt to varying degrees of light intensity and spectral quality. The proof has been obvious to veteran hobbyists, especially those who remember the early days of the hobby when a metal halide with the 'warm' Kelvin rating of 5,500 was considered to be on the cutting edge of technology and could maintain a number of coral taxa alive within captive environments. Since those days, of course, there have been many innovations introduced into the aquarium lighting arena and these have only added to the number of arguments. Fortunately, researchers have recently generated statistically significant data concerning the effects of different spectral qualities on coral growth and longevity. This article will review this information, and will offer further data in support of a pet theory of mine - the 'red light theory.'

 

Recent research has suggested a 'best lamp' - but some caveats exist! Only metal halides were used, and apparently the sample size was small (2 lamps each of 4 various Kelvin ratings). No other types of lamps were tested (i.e., fluorescents, LEDs, etc.). One coral species - an Acropora species collected from approximately the same depth on the same reef - was used in the experiment. In addition, the coral fragments were attached to two different substrates (marble and cement). With this in mind, we can examine these experiments and their results...

 

Even though the article focuses on MH bulbs, the information on red vs. blue wavelengths and PUR is amazing. I know that I've often used the "red light theory" when discussing which color temperature gives the most growth.

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http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2008/12/aafeature1

 

 

 

Even though the article focuses on MH bulbs, the information on red vs. blue wavelengths and PUR is amazing. I know that I've often used the "red light theory" when discussing which color temperature gives the most growth.

 

Interesting article. It was interesting to see the high blue output balanced by the high red output on the 10K bulb. Definitely shows that red light is not nearly as critical to coral growth and color as blue.

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Wow from this article one could derive that MH lighting with 20k is the best for rapid coral growth. That goes against what I have learned though. I was under the impression that 10k bulbs with actinic 03 is the best for rapid growth.

 

Damn, now I have to research lighting more...

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It depends greatly on the bulb though. It's more of a suggestion to go look at the spectral pattern of the bulb before you jump in.

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I wish they used the same brand for all the bulbs or got two bulbs from different brands but the same listed color temperature, which would help rule out manufacturing differences.

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