AQUARIUM CALCIUM REACTOR & KALKWASSER GENERAL INFO
Aquarium Calcium Reactors
Corals, invertebrates, and algae consume calcium and hard corals demand especially large amounts of calcium to build their skeletons. A Calcium reactor will automate the process of replenishing calcium as well as other minerals and trace elements. They require only minimal maintenance and are a simple solution for maintaining calcium and alkalinity in your reef aquarium. Calcium reactors also promote coralline algae growth and help to stabilize pH.
Calcium reactors are essentially chambers full of aragonite (crushed skeletons of ancient hard corals) into which the aquarium water is pumped through along with pressurized carbon dioxide (CO2). The CO2 lowers the pH in the chamber to an acidic level, which dissolves aragonite into the aquarium water. In addition to dissolving the calcium, this process also dissolves nearly all the minerals and trace elements the coral used in order to grow. This takes much of the guesswork out of adding trace elements to your reef aquarium, because it replenishes these minerals and elements in the near exact proportions that the corals need to thrive.
Calcium reactors are typically placed in a sump. A complete aquarium calcium reactor system requires a CO2 Tank, a CO2 Regulator with a needle valve and media. Check for the details regarding all other necessary equipment on the individual pages with the calcium reactors.
For smaller aquariums we carry the ViaAqua Acro-Cal Calcium Reactor and for larger tanks we carry the Aqua Medic Calcium Reactor 1000.
For recommendations for an automated Calcium Reactor System visit the Calcium Reactor Complete System #1 & Calcium Reactor Complete System #2 pages.
Another way to introduce calcium into your aquarium is to use a Kalkwasser Reactor/Stirrer. (Kalkwasser is the German term for a saturated solution of calcium hydroxide in water). Kalkwasser Reactors/Stirrers stir the Kalkwasser so that the calcium carbonate sediment settles at the bottom of the reactor/stirrer vessel while the clear solution of calcium hydroxide is at the outlet where it can be transferred to the sump and then the tank.
Just like a calcium reactor, kalkwasser replenishes the calcium used during the growth of stony corals, coralline algae, clams, etc. Other benefits of kalkwasser include the precipitation of phosphate, maintenance of pH and alkalinity, and enhanced protein skimming.