We probably spent more time and effort in designing and implementing our flow than we did any other aspect of our systems.

Our challenge was having sufficient non-laminar flow in the size and scale of the systems we were building.

Now that we had a good alternating flow, we had to get to a good flow rate for coral health and growth. This is not a case of more is better, but not enough is bad. The minimum rate for coral health we found is about 3 inches per second of water velocity. The maximum we could achieve before our plugs were getting blown around was 11 inches per second. We ended up settling on 6 inches per second for 2 reasons. First, that gave us a very good rate of growth, but the second reason is that was the fastest we could get from a single pump in our systems. In our small-scale trials, we found a little bit better growth at 8 inches per second, but the extra expense and complexity of running a 2-pump closed loop system just wasn’t worth it to us.