Lighting in the marine aquarium

What is the color of light?

The color of the light is in nanometers (Nm), or in the wavelength specified. The spectrum of visible light is about 400-700Nm. Here, a distinction is made between short and long-wave light:
short wave is around 400Nm and is visible as blue, green, and purple.
long wave is at 700Nm and is visible as yellow, orange, and red.

For aquarists is the color temperature, i.e. Kelvin, very important. The standard states:
3500 Kelvin is the evening sun
5500 Kelvin is a sunny day with clear skies
6500-7500 Kelvin is a bright day with overcast skies
9000-12000 Kelvin is a blue sky in the shade

When choosing the light, the following applies: If you wide color spectrum want you need several nanometers to generate high Kelvin numbers.

How long should the light stay on?

With the duration of the light, I can only recommend being guided by nature. You know what animals are in your aquarium and where they come from. Take Hawaii as an example. Looking for one accurate weather report outside, here you can clearly see when the sun rises and sets again. In our example (August), the sun rises at 6:07 a.m. in Hawaii and sets at 7:06 p.m. It is currently 13 hours of sunshine. You can of course decide if 6 am to 7 pm or so you can see more from 8 am to 9 pm.

Just hold on tight in the times of nature, so you can’t go wrong. do you want a moon phase? Then do exactly the same, the moonlight starts just before or with sunset. It is recommended not to leave the moonlight on overnight, but only for 2-3 hours. Dimmable lamps are ideal. The dimming time must be within these 13 hours. Assuming dimming time is 1.5 hours each, full illumination lasts 10 hours.

What light intensity do I need?

The ideal power of light depends a lot on your stocking. There are very light-hungry corals that are placed near the light above, but also corals that require less light, in the mid to low range. The brightness of the light will be in lux or in lumens specified. In the saltwater aquarium, it is recommended: solar zone 30-50,000 lux and 50-70 lumens and in the middle zone 10-20,000 lux and 25-50 lumens. But it is also important in seawater BY. Paris photosynthetically active radiation. SPS corals need about 200-600 PAR, LPS and soft corals only about 50-150 PAR.

What are reflectors?

Some lampshades already have Reflectors inside integrated. For others, they can be modernized and then be placed on top of the lamp, for example. A reflector ensures that the angle of the beam changes and the light can penetrate deeper into the water. A must, especially for high tanks.

How to get a scribble effect?

Very popular in aquariums is the so-called scribble effect. Think back to your last visit to the sea or lake. You stand ankle-deep in the water and look down. The sun penetrates the water, the movement of the water breaks the radiation and these movements are visible on the ground. Just wonderful. This invigorating effect makes sense when you point light sources To. In combination with the movement on the surface of the water, there is a great natural curling effect.

How do I know if I’m using the wrong lighting?

You can tell by these signs that your lighting is bad:
Too much light : Corals will turn pale, fail to grow or even shrink
Too little light: Corals lose color, turn brown, or grow slowly.
There are measuring devices to determine the light intensity. If any issues arise, I would recommend it.

As you have read, the subject of light in the marine aquarium is light very complex. Think carefully in advance about the animals you want to use and get good advice. You can also get multiple recommendations and then decide which variant suits you best. I wish you lots of fun with your own saltwater aquarium.

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