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Found 27 results

  1. Dear friends, Greetings! I hope you are staying healthy. Long story short, so much has changed in what have been doing. IAVS has been substantially modified and improved. We call it IAS now, Integrated Aquaponics System! IAS - the art and science of growing more food organically, with much less water and energy. You can grow fish, microgreens, greens, herbs, vegetables, fruits, fowls and small livestock using IAS methods. Here is a very brief video for you to have a look. Based on your response, I will elaborate. Kind regards, vkn
  2. Hello fellows. It's been a few years since I've posted on this site, but I am now possibly in a position to build and install an AP system at my current workplace. We operate a moderately sized indoor greenhouse (concrete slab floor). There are so many options out there in terms of systems and components, but I've been looking into AP for many years, and have read these forums many times. The consensus these days seems to be iAVS as the go-to system for ease of design and operation. I can totally get down with that. We want something that is not too large, but can be potentially expanded upon in the future. At first, we will probably be using non-food fish such as goldfish just to test it out and get a feel for regular maintenance and operation. I'm sure I will have more questions over time, but for the moment, here are the two that have been top of mind: 1. Since iAVS uses a sand bed as a biofilter, do folks using this type of system, (ideally if you're using it indoors,) find that there is much odor from the decomposing fish waste? 2. Do people use worms in their sand beds to help break down the fish waste? What are your thoughts about having worms in the sand bed? 3. Can the design of the system be modified to incorporate other modules such as NFT troughs, DWC rafts, (non-sand) media beds? I would assume that any of these would be placed after the sand bed for the purpose of filtration. If one or more of these modules were part of the overall design, would that necessitate a sump tank? Thanks in advance!
  3. Brief Intro: I am Phani Krishna, living and working in UK. During my vacation to India, I am setting up a small scale iAVS system at an orphanage in hyderabad, to establish their own food supply system. I have made some progress with the project and now I feel I need some help from the community to take my ideas forward. The project is being established at the kitchen backyard of the shelter home. The area was all dirty and infested with wild rats earlier and hence I took the decision to pour a concrete slab at the ground level to be sure about the environment for the system. The tank size is approximately 25000 litres with a depth of 2 metres. Size of Tank: 1.5 x 3 x 6m (slope of 1ft towards North East) Proposed fish tank usage volume: 14 cu.m. (can be reduced to suit the growing area) Size of 1 grow media bed: 1.3m x 3m x 0.42m (area 3.9sq.m.), central drain of about 30mm dia Total Grow Beds : 11 (can be extended on requirement) Total Growing Volume: 17.16 cu.m The concrete ground is sloping from south east to north east with a 1foot slope approximately. Pump Details: Inlet Size: 32mm Outlet Size 25mm Head : 17 to 27m Discharge : 180 LPM Since this is my first aquaponics/iAVS project, I am planning to use the tank only partially untill the shelter home staff get accustomed to the system and its use, while I also learn and fine tune the variables. In the attached pictures of the area, one can see the brick lines of proposed biofilter beds for growing plants. We have set it up as a bed size of 1.3x3m with 0.3 to 0.4m wall/walkway between the beds. To pump water from the tank, we have selected a 1hp openwell submersible pump. I have not yet got the sand delivered and hence could not do conductivity test and pH test for the system. Meanwhile, I am planning to install the pump and plumbing for the system. I am not sure of the pump selection and plumbing arrangement. I am of the opinion that water supply for all the beds will be piped to the pump, but in this case, the flow will be different in the first bed when compared to the last bed due to the distance the water has to travel from the pump. How to manage to get constant or similar flow rate on all bed supply points ? Is the pump selection approximately matching the system ? Is it better to increase the biofilter area to match 1:2 ratio of tank to grow media ? I have not yet decided on the quantity and type of fish but to begin with, I am planning to introduce ornamental fish like Gold fish (because the institution follows Gandhian philosophy of vegetarian diet). The organization for which I am setting up this system is a NGO established by Mahatma Gandhi. They provide shelter for victims of rape, social abuse, trafficking etc. I feel privileged to have the opportunity to contribute to such a cause in my own little way. Any help from this forum to help me complete the project is greatly appreciated !
  4. My quick and dirty setup of an indoor IAVS. I repurposed one of my cement tubs. It has an overflow that should hopefully never be used, but it's there to prevent overflow onto the carpet that might result in being kicked outside without a doghouse. I'm using a 1 1/2" drain using a uniseal from Allied Aqua. The hole is covered with carbon fiber window screen material. It holds the sand in the grow well. Light is a Galaxy Hydro led grow light I found on clearance. Growth is 2 weeks and a few days. I had planted mesclun in the other row, but it did not come up. The seeds were about 4 to 5 years old, so that may have something to do with it. I replaced with more spinach seeds yesterday. Spinach seeds popped up 2 days after planting. I could never get spinach to grow outdoors, so I'm just tickled to death to get some to actually grow. It just would not come up in my gravel beds when I had them. Timer is digital timer and pumps 1 minute every 2 hours. Can see the algae layer growing even with just LED light. The bed does not get natural sunlight. I had the light to low at first and some of the leaves burned. It's hard to tell from the pics. I rigged up a hanger and have it about 6" from the plants and plants are still growing.
  5. Dear all, I have created this topic to document our own IAVS progress and findings.. In brief, we have over 2+ years of hands-on experience working with various commercial-scale Aquaponics systems.. media beds, NFTs, DWCs, etc. We are now building our first batch of sand beds believing in the IAVS vision. This is to apply as an extension to our current systems. Next, I will update you the progress with some pictures. I look forward to your support. Please share your questions, comments, suggestions.. Thank you.. Kind regards, vkn
  6. Dr Mark R McMurtry...to whom we all owe a debt of gratitude for making iAVs available to the world...was forced to flee a forest fire that has left his mountaintop retreat in ashes. He managed to escape with his life, his beloved dogs, a computer and his old Chevy truck...and the clothes that he stood in. More details available...HERE. He needs our help...NOW! https://www.gofundme.com/horseshoe-hills-fire-victom
  7. New Garden iavs for ORGANIC veggies....circular fish tank with sand bed around the perimetre..(7/8 area) Simple design and easy to construct... Also minimises equipment, time and cost....
  8. I'll update this thread with information about my iAVs build in San Isidro, Costa Rica. I am interested in exploring a relatively simple iAVs system so will be using an IBC tank for the fish and building a simple wooden box with a plastic liner to hold the sand. Still locating some of the components but I will update as I make progress.
  9. Just got introduced to iAV system for Aquaponics. Could someone tell us whether one needs a bio filter with sand or its works like one and we can avoid having a bio filter completely. How does one calculate the size for a bio filter for say 3000 ltr tank with 60 fishes each around .5kg.
  10. An experimental iAVs trial...media used is river sand...powered by 20 tilapia. Designed for easy understanding and educational purpose....
  11. comparing my old gravel bed aquaponics with new iavs beds 10 key points: 1.fish growth 2.ammonia 3.pH change 4.water turbidity 5.plant diseases 6.fish diseases 7.nutrient uptake 8.nutrient deficiencies 9.solid waste management 10.energy
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    Fish Increase Greenhouse Profits An aquaculture study in North Carolina shows that fish and vegetables can be good companion crops. By Doug Sanders and Mark McMurtry February 1988
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    Aquaculture in Greenhouses: Fish and Vegetables Grow Together by Dr. Mark R. McMurtry This article was featured in NCSU Research Perspectives 7:3
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    IAVS Folio Reprints from Inside Dr. Mark R. McMurtry's Research Greenhouse by Dr. Mark R. McMurtry This document includes numerous photos of the inside of Dr. McMurtry's research greenhouse, the growbeds, plants, fish and more. Some production data concerning both plants and fish is also included, as well as some growth rate data pertaining to the tilapia.
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    Food Value, Water Use Efficiency, and Economic Productivity of an Integrated Aquaculture-Olericulture System as Influenced by Tank to Biofilter Ratio M.R. McMurtry, D.C. Sanders, B.C. Haning, and P.C. St. Amand Includes the original text as well as supporting data tables. (2 documents)
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    Sand Culture of Vegetables Using Recirculated Aquaculture Effluents M.R. McMurtry, P.V. Nelson, D.C. Sanders, L. Hodges Department of Horticulture Science North Carolina State University This appeared in Applied Agricultural Research Vol. 5, No. 4, pp. 280-284
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    Yield of Tomato Irrigated with Recirculating Aquaculture Water M.R. McMurtry, D.C. Sanders, R.P. Patterson, A. Nash Featured in Journal of Production Agriculture, Vol. 6, no. 3, 1993
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    Yield of Tomato Irrigated with Recirculating Aquaculture Water M.R. McMurtry, D.C. Sanders, R.P. Patterson, A. Nash Featured in Journal of Production Agriculture, Vol. 6, no. 3, 1993
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    Water Quality Maintenance and Mineral Assimilation by Plants Influence Growth of Hybrid Tilapia in Culture with Vegetable CropsM.R. McMurtry, R.G. Hodson and D.C. Sanders University of North Carolina Sea Grant College Program and Department of Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695 This is a multi-file document. Please download all associated files for proper cross referencing. Main Document: J. WAS 94 Text_alpha Cit.pdf Supporting data, tables and figures: J. WAS 94 Tables.pdf J. WAS 94 Table 3 final.pdf J. WAS 94 Figures.pdf
  20. A very good post of what is IAVS was submitted recently by Dr. McMurtry. I felt it deserved it's own thread. VKN - and anyone else who may benefit/care: I’m going to attempt to smooth your ruffled feathers. I DO want very much for you - and everyone else - to succeed ‘beyond your wildest dreams’ (exceed expectations). If I didn’t, then I wouldn’t still be typing, or otherwise infecting APN with my demonic ‘attitude’ - or ‘putting up with’ hostile lying trolls. I hesitate to craft the definitive ‘definition’ of iAVs at this time, but I’ll ‘give a shot’ at listing what I consider to be the basic requirements: Water: fresh (non-saline), clear (non-turbid), non-polluted (no biological pathogens or ‘chemicals’, metals or nucleotides). Basically, potable water. Rain water is strongly advised for the vast majority of applications/locations. Its also free. (collect and store securely in advance of need). Sand: well-draining, no clay/slit, and chemically inert (does not raise or lower pH of water that comes into contact with it). We’ve been all over this topic in detail repeatedly. “Sand†is a specific range of particle size, not a specific material/mineral composition. Quartz (SiO2) is recommended if/where at all possible, but some other inert minerals and glasses may work well also. Others certainly will not. Operating beyond the scope of our recommendations is at the sole responsibility/risk of the operator(s). Furrows: on the sand surface to distribute ‘water/waste’ evenly across surface and also to keep aerial plant material dry. Pristine sand furrows are stabilized by bacterial films, detritus and/or alga. Attempt to maintain as much ridge area (mound between furrows) as wide as possible. Furrows include both between all rows of plants and around the entire perimeter. Flood/Drain: Saturate filter substrate and then allow it to drain completely once every 2 hours (approx.) during daylight. Leave drained overnight. In the tropics, first ‘cycle’ can begin somewhat pre-dawn and the last start at dusk (finish draining just after total darkness). Since drainage also occurs during the pumping interval, presuming sufficient drainage, one can pump 1/4 up to even one-half of a FT volume per cycle without reducing the FT volume by more than 10 to 15% at any given time. ‘Tank’ (fish containment), Its capacity, proportions, shape (especially bottom slope) and the pump type/location need combine (‘work together’) to effectively allow solids to settle, and collect in a region/zone that the pump will readily extract/remove when it comes on. Try to schedule irrigation volumes sufficient to exchange (turnover) the FT at least twice each day. More might be ‘better’ - which can be accomplished several ways (not described here to avoid confusion) but not recommended to do so by shortening the on cycle interval significantly. Fish/Feed: Sufficient fish biomass and feed input consumed to satisfy fish and generate sufficient ‘waste’ to fertilize the number and species of plants being grown - not feed/stocked more than the filter/microbes can process continuously. This will vary by fish species, age (size), density, DO, pH, Temp, of water, and feed composition/conversion. Do not feed in the evening (allow for complete tank volume exchange between the last feeding of each day and dark). Sustainable fish load and feed rate also varies somewhat depending on type of plant species grown (e.g. leaf vs fruiting) and somewhat on the stage of development/maturity. Too many fish eating too much feed and respiring too much TAN for the size of the biofilter bed in current use is not advised. One could get away with this in the short-term but not over the medium- or long-term. pH; iAVs is dominantly (90-95%) Horticulture - by mass and economic value in most markets). Maximal fish production is NOT a goal nor advised. Vascular plants strongly ‘prefer’ (grow best) in range of pH 5.5 to 6.8 (extremes) and optimally 6.4 +/- 0.4 (variance range depends n specific species). Believe it or not. If one is satisfied with the results of one’s efforts, then that’s wonderful, really!. If one wants to improve one’s circumstance further, then consider accepting best-intentioned advise. Soil microbial ecology. Microbes evolved along with the plants they sustain/interact with, meaning they too benefit from pH in the ‘optimal’ range. In a ‘controlled environment e.g. greenhouse Pests and diseases: Take every prevention precaution possible (too many to describe here). A common vector is humans: limit and pre-sanitize all visitors and workers. Monitor for any/all developing problems continuously and have appropriate remedy available immediately. A gram of prevention yields many kilos of cure. Use integrated pest management strategies extensively (employ beneficial insects, bacteria, and plants). Use insecticidal soaps (Potassium salts of fatty acids) and plant-based extracts with care (minimize/eliminate contact with filter substrate) Maintain air temperatures and humidity levels appropriate to the plant species being grown. Shade, fogging, evaporative cooling can each be effective for cooling, either individually or in various combinations. Always provide ample ventilation and continuous air movement within a greenhouse. Above May Not be stated the best way possible: Its just what keystrokes I activated this morning. Any remaining gaps, errors or omissions are not intentional and regrettable.(and correctable). Questions to ask yourself - OR better yet, to share your responses to here: Is your water ‘clean’ or is it contaminated? (e.g. nitrates, phosphates, pathogens, …) DO you have/use an inert, well-drained sand (sharp SiO2 preferred) DO you flood saturate and then leave drained on 2+/- cycle during the day? Are you maintaining ‘system’ (water) pH in the range preferred by plants for optimal growth? Above pH 7.0 is NOT recommended. Do you have a ‘balanced’ fish load and sustainable feed input rate? Are you growing nutrient demanding crops (solely lettuce is not advised)? If you answered Yes to ALL of the above questions, then congratulations … you’re amazing and quite unique. I say that in spite of the fact that I will always insist that AP is a disease. Some diseases are curable, others are not. You’re Welcome. ============ PS: Yes, I am fully aware that focusing on plant production (minimizing fish to plant ‘ratios’) is viewed as blasphemy by many, if not most, aqua-holics. This is not a concern I have. No one is attempting to prevent anyone from doing precisely whatever they feel like, be that rational or otherwise. Don’t freak out or invent fallacies. I am describing what iAVs was intended to do, aka how it ‘works best’ (to date). What anyone who is NOT literally doing/using iAVs “feels†about claims and goals thereof is irrelevant to me. Do it or don’t. Your choice. Your life. ....... BTW: Not seeing is not believing ... and vice-versa If you do undertake iAVs, then please accept our advice in the spirit intended. My/our intention is for you to realize the best outcome possible, with the greatest cost:benefit possible. There is and never has been anything (positive) ’in this’ for me. iAVs has always been exclusively about you (others). That is all. No fee, No exchange, No refund. No apology.
  21. http://seedstock.com/2016/02/08/university-researches-economic-sustainability-of-large-scale-aquaponics/ Found this at another forum.. thought of sharing here. Good to see world universities are picking up Commercial Aquaponics as a subject for research but I wonder why Draud has not even heard about iAVs and is now trying to re-invent the wheel and inventing new technologies. What do you think?
  22. Looking thru the old literature on hydro sand culture. Assumption being some research there might provide insight into the bed design for IAVs. Ran across this that might be of interest -- Pure sand can be used in trough or trench culture. However, in desert locations, it is often more convenient and less expensive to cover the greenhouse floor with polyethylene film and install a system of drainage pipes (PVC pipe 5 cm in diameter, cut one third through diagonally every 45 cm along the length of the pipe, with the cuts facing downward) and then to backfill the area with sand to a depth of approximately 30 cm. If the depth of the sand bed is shallower, moisture conditions may not be uniform and plant roots may grow into the drainpipes. The area to be used as planting beds may be level or slightly sloped. Supply manifolds for nutrient solution must be sited accordingly. Various kinds of desert and coastal sand with different physical and chemical properties have been used successfully by the University of Arizona workers. The size distribution of sand particles is not critical, except that exceptionally fine material such as mortar sand does not drain well and should be avoided. If calcareous sand is used, it is important to maintain a nutrient solution with a neutral pH, and increased amounts of chelated iron must be applied to the plants. Sand growing beds should be fumigated annually to prevent the introduction of soilborne diseases and nematodes. Irrigation practices are particularly critical during the high-radiation summer months, when crops may have to be irrigated as many as eight times per day. Proper irrigation is indicated by a small but continuous drainage, 4-7% of the application, from the entire growing area. Evaporation of water around small summer tomato transplants is often high, which can lead to a slight buildup of fertilizers in the planting bed. Extra nitrogen causes excessive vegetative growth, and reduces the number of fruits. This can be avoided by reducing the amount of nitrogen in the solution from the time of transplanting until the appearance of the first blossoms. Drainage from the beds should be tested frequently, and the beds leached when drainage salts exceed 3000 ppm. The principal crops grown in sand culture systems are tomato and cucumber, and yields of both crops can be high. Seedless cucumber production has exceeded 700 mt/ha. http://www.agnet.org/library.php?func=view&id=20110729175702
  23. Here in West Texas, frac sand is everywhere; it's common to see a few bushels dumped on the side of the road, where some idiot trucker decided to clean out the bottom lines on their trailer. Most of the sand arrives already mixed with additives, but some vendors have clean sand available - washed, dried and in bulk. Fairmount Santrol has a location here in town, (I actually worked there years ago, when it was a different company) and I thought their "BEST SAND SILICA SAND" would be a good fit for an iAVs sand bed. FM-0557_BestSand_SilicaSand_Sheet.pdf Frac sand was mentioned in the Ravnis Sand Bed post a while back, and Gary Donaldson suggested that the rounded grains might work well at a smaller particle size since it is so precisely graded. I had been looking at the 1020 and 1220 as candidates for this "sub-angular" sand, but now I'm wondering if a finer grade would be better suited to this application. Any Recommendations?
  24. From the album: small iAVs in California

    what has been described to me as "playground" sand, quartz-silica. First sample.
  25. Hi all, many wishes for a bountiful new year! In previous posts I've admitted to my utter lack of experience with aquaponics/iAVs and though I'm quite a ways off from building anything, I am still intrigued by iAVs. I find, though, that I have a hard time following some of the technical details (here on the forums or on the iAVs site) BECAUSE I'm not starting from a place grounded in AP experience. Seriously, I have a betta in a one-gallong jar and a guppy (soon to be plural) in a planted six-gallon tank (filterless, I'm aiming for biological/ecosystem help). I use tank water on my houseplants, which is "half-aquaponics" but not in the way most people conceive of it. That's neither here nor there, I suppose… my point being: Is it recommended that I research and try out typical AP systems first so I can get a handle on the specifics of iAVs (esp. the tech involved - I know nothing about tanks and pumps for example)? That seems counterintuitive to me (learning what I don't necessarily want to learn so I can learn what I think I want to learn). Would any of you kind APN folk be able to recommend a direction for me to start with? I'm ultimately aiming for low-tech, resilient systems but I have to start small due to financial constraints. I'd be fine starting with, say, goldfish or guppies and enough space for 2-4 plants. Conversely, I don't even know where to look to find out the smallest workable system that can support edible fish - as maybe it's more cost effective to start there (unless I can sell goldfish or guppies…) After being waylaid in some of my efforts in the last quarter of 2015, I'm still at a point where mealworms and quail are in the planning phase, so I'm not sure I'll get to iAVs soon --- just still poking about trying to figure out how I can do this. Many thanks!
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