PROTEIN SKIMMERS

The National Aquarium in Baltimore, MD USA

The National Aquarium in Baltimore, MD USA

The New England Aquarium Boston, MA USA

How Protein Skimming Works and Why You Should Use It For Your Aquatic Applications

Protein skimming is the term most commonly used by aquarium and aquaculture professionals to describe the removal of suspended and dissolved waste from fish tanks by means of air flowtation. Protein skimming is a relatively simple process which relies on the physical and chemical properties of coagulation. A summary explanation describes organic molecules (surfactants) as polar at one end and non-polar at the other. The polar end is hydrophilic "or water loving" and attracted to water molecules. The non polar portion of the molecule tends to orient their hydrophobic parts in contact with air. This surface active characteristic allows them to concentrate at air/water interfaces. To be effective, the protein skimming process requires a contact column in which air and water containing these surfactants can interact. The air and water interfaces are provided by supplying a constant injection of small bubbles to a proportional volume of water in the column and allowing them to mix and then migrate to the surface. During this migration, suspended and dissolved organic material (protein is a specific class of organic material) congregate at the air/water interfaces, with the bubbles forming a "skin" like character on their surface. At the upper levels of the column most of the water drains away leaving a concentrated residue of foam composed primarily of organic material. The skimming off of this foam waste removes it from the life support system. It is, therefore, no longer susceptible to undesirable microbiological degradation which will contribute to increased oxygen demand in an aquatic system. Protein skimming is essentially a perpetual backwashing filter. In addition, skimming enhances the oxygenation of a system both biologically and physically. Biological oxygen demand is reduced by the direct removal of biodegradable organic carbon (protein), as well as bacteria in the water column. Physically, the increased surface area provided by the injection of large volumes of air (in the form of small bubbles) into a column of water creates a condition for gas exchange. The addition of a small dose of ozone to the process, with its coagulative and disinfectant properties, makes skimming possibly the best component one could add to a modern life support system.

The National Aquarium in Baltimore, MD USA


FEATURES AND CONSTRUCTION


COMMERCIAL PROTEIN SKIMMERS SPECIFICATIONS

Specs PS-25 PS-50 PS-75 PS-100 PS-150 PS-225 PS-300
Height 88" 90" 97½" 99" 106" 108" 111"
Diameter 12" 18" 22" 26" 30" 36" 42"
Inlet 1½" 1½" 1½" 2" 2" 3" 4"
Outlet 2" 3" 3" 4" 4" 6" 6"
Drain 1" 1" 1" 1" 1½" 1½" 1½"
GPM* 25 50 75 100 150 225 300
Prices U.S. $1,599 $1,995 $2,500 $2,800 $3,250 $3,720 $5,350

* Flow rate in gallons per minute

**Includes Mazzei Air Injector..... Call for shipping quote**


 

The PS-25, PS-150,  Protein Skimmer

 

Protein Skimmer Typical Installation

 

 

Notes:

  1. All pipe connections to industrial protein skimmers should have a flexible or expansion joint to
    relieve stress on pipe flanges from vibration created from air injectors. 
  2. Gaskets for flanges and expansion joints must be ordered separately.
  3. The standard external gelcoat color is gray.
  4. Pipes connected to protein skimmers should be supported if longer than 4 feet.
  5. If ozone is used, an ozone controller must be operating to maintain not more than 2% ozone.
    (Available with purchase of protein skimmer)

Custom fittings and locations available with approved drawings by customers.


Complete Protein Skimmer Line

Protein Skimmer

GPM

Height (in.)

Diameter (in.)

Weight

List Price

PS-25

25

88

12

30

$1,599

PS-50

50

90

18

50

$1,995

PS-75

75

98

22

65

$2,500

PS-100

100

99

26

78

$2,800

PS-150

150

106

30

92

$3,250

PS-225

250

108

36

118

$3,720

PS-300

300

111

42

150

$5,350

Contact Time
All protein skimmers are based on a 1.5 minute contact time at flow rate.


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