Aquaponics Nutrients can be reclaimed by Filtering Aquaponics water by providing light source at the bottom of your tank(s). An example application can be accomplished with an HID (high intensity discharge lamp) lamp. The lower layers of an Aquaponics system can be clump up with anaerobic material that does not decompose easily. If one looks at the sediment through a microscope, you will find millions of micros requiring light to function. Once these animals have the right temperature and light, they continue to decompose materials.
Providing an HID light inside a hermetically sealed glass box will help get these microorganisms moving and chewing up some of the scum on the bottom of your tank. Think of your Aquaponics system as the top layer of a lake. The top layer holds oxygen and light. When sediment or microbiology drops to lower layers, it like dropping to the bottom of a lake.
It’s best to learn the functions of each layer in a lake.
The epilimnion is the top-most layer in a thermally stratified lake. It is warmer and typically has a higher pH and higher dissolved oxygen concentration than the hypolimnion. It is exposed to the surface. It has the ability to be exposed to the air surface. It exchanges dissolved gases such as O2, H2S, CH4, NO2, NO3, NH4, O3 and CO2 with the atmosphere. Because this layer receives the most sunlight it contains the most phytoplankton. As they grow and reproduce they absorb nutrients from the water, when they die they sink into the hypolimnion resulting in the epilimnion becoming depleted of nutrients.
A thermocline (sometimes metalimnion) is a thin but distinct layer in a large body of fluid in which temperature changes more rapidly with depth than it does in the layers above or below.
The hypolimnion is the dense, bottom layer of water. Typically the hypolimnion is the coldest layer of a lake in summer, and the warmest layer during winter. It’s the most stable in temperature. It is isolated from surface during summer, and usually receives insufficient irradiance (light) for photosynthesis to occur. Dead microbiology from the Epilimnion layer sinks down through this layer to the benthos layer. This is similar to the bottom of an Aquaponics tank.
The benthic zone is the ecological region at the lowest level of a body of water such as a lake, including the sediment surface and some sub-surface layers. Organisms living in this zone are called benthos. They generally live in close relationship with the substrate bottom; many such organisms are permanently attached to the bottom. The superficial layer of the soil lining the given body of water, the benthic boundary layer, is an integral part of the benthic zone, as it greatly influences the biological activity which takes place there. Examples of contact soil layers include sand bottoms, rocky outcrops, coral, and bay mud.