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Aquaponic Glossary

I think we invent jargon because it saves times talking to one-another.

John Maynard Smith

BOD – Biological oxygen demand

CF – Continuous Flow

DO – Dissolved oxygen

DOC – Dissolved organic compounds

DWC – Deep water culture

FRC – Floating raft culture

FT – Fish Tank

GB – Grow beds

GH – General Hardness, caused by divalent metal ions, primarily calcium and magnesium.

GH – Green house

IBC – Industrial / International / Intermediate bulk container

KH – Carbonate Hardness, due to carbonate / bicarbonate ions, and represents the main ‘buffering capacity’ of the water, i.e. its ability to resist pH changes. (see Water Hardness and Fish Health)

NFT – Nutrient Film Technique (see System Glossary)

NH3 – Ammonia (see The Nitrogen Cycle & Nitrifying Bacteria Facts for a full description)

NH4 – Ammonium, the ionized form of ammonia, which is occurs when the water is acidic. It is not as toxic to fish as ammonia, which is why aquariums that have acidic water do not have as many problems with the initial phase of the nitrogen cycle. Ammonium, the most important nitrogenous fertilizer for water plants, is essential for the breakdown of plant protein.

NO2 – Nitrite

NO3 – Nitrate

pH – acidity or alkalinity of a substance

ppm – Parts per million

RAS – Recirculating Aquaculture System

RFF – Radial Flow Filter

RO – Reverse Osmosis

SG – Specific Gravity, meaning the salinity (salt) content of your water.

SLO – Solids Lift Overflow

SUF – Static Upflow Filter

UGF – Under Gravel Filter

UV – Ultra Violet

Aquaculture – The controlled cultivation and harvest of aquatic plants or animals (eg, edible marine algae, clams, oysters, and salmon).

Aeroponics – a hydroponic technique involving the use of sprayers, nebulizers, foggers, or other devices to create a fine mist of solution to deliver nutrients to plant roots.

Aquaponics – the integration of aquaculture and hydroponics.

CHIFT PIST – Constant Height in Fish Tank, Pump in Sump Tank – One method of running a system to ensure that the fish tank water level won’t fluctuate. Also makes it unlikely that the fish tank will run dry if the pipes break or some other crises occurs.

Blue drum – 200L plastic drum used in many areas of aquaponics. Can be cut in half vertically or horizontally to give two 100L grow beds. Care needs to be taken when obtaining these drums that toxic chemicals have not been stored in them. Depending on the previous use of the drum, they may be successfully cleaned and used in your system.

Crenellations – cover a greater surface area compared to a series of drilled holes and thus lets a greater water flow through, holes are more prone to clog.

Fish-safe silicone – It forms a tough waterproof seal that won’t crack or shrink, and is non-toxic to fish when fully cured after 7 to 14 days. Cure time depends on bead size and cure conditions.

Float switch – an electrical switch used to turn pumps on and off during pumping cycles.

IBC – Industrial / Intermediate / International Bulk Carriers, 1000L, usually 1000mm x 1000mm x 1000mm (approx.) plastic cubes used to transport bulk liquids by road or rail. They are usually white / translucent and contained within a steel or aluminium cage on a pallet. Care needs to be taken when obtaining these ibc’s that toxic chemicals have not been stored in them. Specialist fittings are often required to couple to the tap in the bottom of the ibc.

PVC Pipe – PVC stands for Polyvinyl Chloride.

CPVC Pipe – CPVC stands for Chlorinated Polyvinyl Chloride.

ABS Pipe – eans Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene.

PEX Pipe – PEX stands for crosslinked polyethylene.

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