Re: LED lighting (was aroid recommendations)
- Subject: Re: LED lighting (was aroid recommendations)
- From: ExoticRainforest <Steve@exoticrainforest.com>
- Date: Fri, 23 Jan 2009 15:51:14 -0600
I'm sure not trying to promote any
brand and I'm sure Bonaventure's choice is excellent. But let me
introduce you to another alternative which is relatively inexpensive
for aquarium plant use. These units are called Power Compact lights.
They normally consist of two bulbs in a nice looking light system that
easily mounts on almost any size aquarium. The bulbs are normally
around 130 watts which means two bulbs will give you about 260 watts of
power. That would amount to approximately medium intensity sunlight.
These are commonly used for growing soft corals which require a strong
intensity light. If you use two systems at the same time you can get a
high enough intensity to grow stony corals which are even harder to
grow. The bulbs can be ordered in daylight (around 5500 degrees
Kelvin) which is the same as sunlight or in higher Kelvin values for
plants that normally grow in the understory where the light is a bit
bluer. I've grown living corals for much of the last 17 years and have
found these work great and I promise corals are harder to keep alive
I'm not trying to push any seller but just look up Power Compact
Aquarium lights on eBay and see who has the best system for the best
price. Be sure and specify the color (Kelvin value) of the bulbs you
want to receive if you choose to order. If you buy these in a local
aquarium store you'll pay at least double the price for the same lights.
Steve Marak wrote:
PAR is just the acronym for "photosynthetically active radiation", i.e.,
that in the frequency ranges which plants actually use (400-700 nm or so).
Since LEDs are by nature monochromatic (the "white" ones either use
multiple colors together, or have a phosphor which re-emits broader
spectrum light), plant growers very quickly hit on the idea of using only
LEDs which emit near the peak absorption frequencies of the two higher
plant chlorophylls (430-455 nm in the blue, 640-665 in the red).
It's not clear to me whether that really improves things or not, since my
understanding was that other pigments present in leaves, acting with
chlorophyll, tended to spread out the range of frequencies which plants
could use across that 400-700 nm range. So I bought a PAR meter, even
though it wasn't cheap and it uses funky non-SI units (microeinsteins, or
often microeinsteins/meter squared/second) that have to be converted to
and from *everything*.
I don't know if I've really learned much or not (except that in the end,
you still have to just try things and see if the plants grow well), but I
can sling a lot more numbers now when I talk about it!
On Fri, 23 Jan 2009, email@example.com wrote:
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