Why doesn’t the optional equipment come with the system?
Once you select the Clear Flow Aquaponic System® that is right for your needs, you will notice there is optional equipment shown on our order forms. There are additional items that some people need and others do not, depending on their climate, crop choices, infrastructure, etc.
Nelson and Pade, Inc.® offers greenhouse packages for our Clear Flow Aquaponic Systems®. The Standard and Premium greenhouse are manufactured by quality greenhouse manufacturers. These greenhouses for aquaponics can be used in cold, moderate and warm climates and will protect your crops from extreme weather conditions. If you are interested in indoor farming, these greenhouses are a great choice for year ’round food production.
Fish Purge Systems
If you are raising fish to eat, we highly recommend a purge system. Using our purge system and purging techniques, your harvested fish will have a clean, fresh taste. The meat will have a firm texture. With any farmed fish, if you don’t purge them, you will likely be disappointed in the quality. If you are raising ornamental fish, like koi or goldfish, you don’t need a purge system.
Our purge systems are available in multiple sizes so you can pick one that best meets your harvesting and marketing plan. The purge systems are stand-alone aquaculture systems with a single fish tank and filtration components to keep the water clean and fresh, resulting in the best tasting fish.
Purge systems also serve as isolation systems. In the event you have to isolate sick fish, you can use the purge system.
Fish Nursery Systems
Our MicroFarm 3 and our Commercial Systems have 4 or 6 fish tanks (depending on the model), which are stocked using a staggered method. We recommend stocking the main system tanks with 1000 gram fingerlings. If you can purchase 1000 gram fingerlings, you don’t need a fish nursery. For our MicroFarm 1 and 2, we recommend starting your fry in the main system tanks.
If the fish you will buy are smaller than stocking size, you should start them in our nursery system. This is a very efficient method of starting with fry (very young fish) and growing them to stocking size. Our fish nurseries are complete aquaponic systems that include plant grow beds so you get some early plant production even before your larger system is operating. Our fish nursery systems come with an inline heater to maintain proper water temperature for your young fish.
If you are just building your greenhouse and aquaponic system, you can get a jump start on the start-up time by setting up and stocking your fish nursery first. When planning where you will put the nursery, remember that the plants in the grow beds will need sunlight or grow lights.
Plant grow lights are used to extend day-length in a greenhouse or to provide 100% of light for plants indoors. Grow lights must provide the right spectrum and intensity of light for plant growth. We only offer grow lights that we have tested, over time and that have demonstrated substantial increases in plant growth. Currently, we offer LED and High Intensity Discharge (HID) grow lights. The LED lights cost more upfront, but less to run. The HID lights cost less upfront but more to run.
Accelerated Plant Nursery
This is an option for the MicroFarm 1 and 2. It is included with the MicroFarm 3 and all Commercial Systems. The Accelerated Plant Nursery system allows you to do a 2-stage transplant of lettuce seedlings. It dramatically increases production while using greenhouse space most efficiently.
Water Testing Equipment
There are several key water quality parameters that you’ll want to monitor regularly in your aquaponic system. During start up, you’ll monitor frequently and over time, as your system becomes established, you can monitor weekly, or as needed. At a minimum, you should have test kits on hand for: ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH. Dissolved Oxygen (DO) is another critical factor and is best tested with a DO meter. We offer two options, a DO meter kit and a DO Pen.
Inline Water Heaters
Maintaining proper water temperature will keep your fish healthy and enhance plant growth. Plus, when the plant root temperature is in the right range, you can let your air temperature drop to lower than normal levels. In a greenhouse, this saves you energy because heating the water is more energy efficient than heating the air because of the heat loss factor in the greenhouse.
Our inline water heaters are electric, 220v and are available in sizes ranging from 2kw – 8kw. They are designed for continuous flow. The size of the inline heater you will need depends on your climate, crop choice, other environmental control and the size of your system.
The inline heater installation kits (sold separately from the inline heater) includes the plumbing and valves you need to make a heater loop, so that you can install it inline, but still have the capability to by-pass it for maintenance.
We offer heat exchangers to use as an economical heat source. This is used in most commercial applications. You supply the boiler (solar, natural gas or electric) and plumbing. We supply the actual heat exchanger.
Fish Tank Windows
Windows allow you to see the fish swimming, monitor their behavior and feeding habits. People love to watch fish so having windows in your fish tanks will make it more enjoyable. Our window kit includes the window, hardware, silicone and instructions. On the Premium version of our systems, we cut and drill the holes in the fish tanks so when you receive it, you follow the instructions and glue the window in place. We don’t ship tanks with the windows glued because jostling in shipment cause the seal to break. Note: windows in your fish tank will require regular maintenance to keep them clear and free of algae or debris.
Our monitoring systems provide you great comfort in knowing that everything is ok in your aquaponic greenhouse, whether you are there or not. We supply the sensors and system to monitor all of the critical factors in an aquaponic system and if anyone of outside of the set point or not working, the monitoring system will contact you. Available in web or phone based versions, for 24 hour monitoring.
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