Refugiums are a proven nutrient reduction method that grow specific algae like chaetomorpha that intake nutrients such as nitrate and phosphate. However, refugiums take up a lot of space, usually make a mess of your sump, and they are not efficient at directing flow through the algae. The Skimz MBR157 Macroalgae Reactor allows you to grow algae within a contained system, letting you have full control of the flow rate through the reactor and direct contact with the LED lighting system.
All Skimz Macroalgae Reactors include a high power LED lighting system that is encased in a crystal clear quartz sleeve. Quartz sleeves provide the highest optical clarity allowing much more light to pass through when compared to typical glass. The LEDs were selected to provide excellent nutrient intake while providing rapid growth. As water flows through the reactor and contacts the quartz sleeve, it will actively cool the LED lights. We do not recommend turning the light on without water flow through the reactor.
Controllable Quiet Pro DC Pump
The included DC pump gives you full control of the flow through the algae. The highly efficient Quiet Pro DC pumps run extremely quiet, using a brushless 6-pole synchronous motor. They also utilize a slow start-up mode that gradually builds up speed over the duration of about 20 seconds. With 20 different speed settings, dialing in the reactor is as simple as pushing up or down on the pump controller.
Max Tank Volume Recommendation - 180 Gallons
The size of macroalgae reactor your aquarium requires will vary depending on the amount of nutrient reduction needed. We suggest using the largest macroalgae reactor you can fit in your sump.
Dimensions - 8.25" L x 8.25" W x 24" H
Min Water Level - 3.0"
Reactor Total Volume - 1.75 Gallons (approx)
Number of LEDs - 64 LEDs
LED Colors - Red, Blue, White
Pump Max Flow - 640 GPH
Pump Max Power - 22W
1x MBR157 Reactor
1x QP2.0 Skimz Quiet Pro Pump
1x Pump Controller
1x LED Lighting System
1x LED Power Supply
1x Pump Power Supply
Good Reactor By mako on 8/8/2017mako would recommend this product to a friendI have had it running 6 weeks. It is very easy to install and get going. The pump is slightly louder than my other DC pumps. I only run it about half so not a bug deal. The o-ring is kinda hard to get in place, but not that bad. It could be better for sure. I was careful to get the power supplies right, its easy to mix them up. The only change I would like is to add a plastic plate just below the exit. Some algae gets pushed out from the top chamber. Grow has been good, I am getting coralline on the plastic plates.
Explosive chaeto growth By William Jenkins on 8/2/2017William Jenkins would recommend this product to a friendI purchased two of these to supplement the biological filtration on a 2000g saltwater system that I manage for research purposes. Its been running for about two months now and have had to harvest chaeto twice now from it reaching max capacity.
I am also a fan of the small variable speed pump that it comes with. Makes it easy to maximize the chaeto growth. While this doesn't apply to the setup I have it on, I could also see having the ability to purge the chamber by ramping up the pump speed, as being a great way to flush copepods and other small inverts out of the reactor and into ones tank.
I do have to agree with other reviews in that the way there are some obvious design flaws in how the O-ring for the top is set up. It is, however, manageable and just takes a little extra time to get it set in right so it seals correctly.
O-ring is a Pain, but good reactor. By Jerine on 5/21/2017Jerine would recommend this product to a friendThis reactor is pretty nice. The reason I'm giving it 3 stars is because the O-ring is very difficult to put on. Seems like a bit of an afterthought and definitely a design flaw. It wouldn't matter that much it you didn't have to remove the top that often, but since you do, it does. For the money they should have addressed that. I also had trouble installing the pump. Mostly because of the O-ring. I can look past that portion of the reactor because I'll only remove it for maintenance every months. Overall this is a good reactor and great for anyone who doesn't have space for a refugium. Hopefully they do something about the O-ring in future generations. One more thing. The instructions are a little misleading and almost useless, as most Skimz instructions are. Make sure you use the large power supply portion for the LED light. The instructions make it seem as though you should use the small power supply. If you have switch them the LED will just blink and the pump will stop working. Just switch the power supplies and you should be good.
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While this is not the intended function of the reactor, it is almost inevitable that copepods will want to live in the macroalgae. Their survival odds would likely be very similar to that of making it through our return pump from a regular refugium.