This brief was to design and build an in wall aquarium capable of keeping a large number of soft and hard corals as well as many reef fish. The reef system should be as automated as possible. Thus easy to maintain. Because our client only had experience with a previous freshwater aquarium and worked away quite often, we would provide our aquarium maintenance service for the tank via 3 service calls per month.
The project started with the build of a small extension to the side of the client’s house. This would create the necessary space for the aquarium and filter system.
White doors are used externally that match the rest of the house and provide access to the filter system. Being on the outside of the house each door has a lock for security.
An extractor fan is used to expel heat produced from the tank’s lighting. This heat is exhausted outside. The tank sits on a metal frame which provides a solid foundation.
A sunny day provided us with great weather to perform the main part of this in wall aquarium installation.
The custom aquarium design includes 2 x corner weir boxes with blue rear and side panels. The front pane of the tank is ultra clear Optiwhite glass.
With the tank in position, we could then install the lighting. This comprises of an 8 x 80 watt ATI T5 Luminaire and 4 x Aquaray marine blue and fiji purple led strips. Resulting in an extremely intense light that corals require to thrive.
Bespoke Filtration System
Because this reef tank has an additional sump tank underneath, there is more than adequate space for all filtration, leaving the main display tank free from equipment.
The fully automated filter system operates via an Aquatronica controller. This monitors and controls the tanks pumps, lighting and vital water parameters. In addition, we receive a daily text message containing this vital information. As well as sending us a text if any parameter falls out of tolerance or in the event of a power cut. Therefore making it a vital piece of equipment where significant time and financial investment is being made.
Both the main and sump tank are open topped which aids gas exchange and thus allows the system to breathe. However, this does cause a lot of evaporation. To rectify this we install a top up unit that detects when then water level falls and automatically tops up the system with fresh water. This takes the hard work out of having to perform this task manually and also keeps the salinity of the tank very stable.
The front wall is now plastered ready for painting. We have added a top flap to the wall to provide access into the tank.
Now the tank can be filled. We always use ultra pure reverse osmosis water for every marine aquarium installation we perform. Tank filling for this system took 4 days.
Once the aquarium is filled, we add the correct amount of ocean salt and commission the system. During this process, we check all items of equipment are functioning correctly and set up the aquarium controller.
Stocking The Tank
Once the system has been running for a few days we can begin the rock aqua-scape. In this particular tank, the client had asked us to create 2 tall rock structures. The rock formations are assembled outside of the tank and then transferred inside piece by piece. The 2 tall structures utilise Reef Rods which makes them very stable.
And 3 months later the tank is beginning to take shape with fish settling in well and corals becoming established.
From here on with our guidance this in wall aquarium continues to grow and flourish. Many more corals and fish are added to produce a tank as seen here.
Interested in our in wall aquarium design service?
Please call us on 01457511138 or email.