Aquaponics - Powerhead zero head test

The absurdly low energy aquaponics system I've been working on, will probably use a power head to shift water between a fish tank, and a constant flood grow bed, both kept at the same water level so that the pump can run at it's most efficient.

To this end, I put a powerhead in a 90mm pvc pipe to see what kind of flow I can expect.

It definitely looks like being viable.

With only the tiniest head, the thing moved a lot of water. With a head of more than 2 cm, almost no water flowed at all, but I'm hoping to make a zero head system so it should work fine.

It's difficult to see the flow because I cant raise the pipe very much at all without stopping the flow altogether, but there is quite a bit of water fowing over the edge.

I would guess around 2000L an hour.

The flow at zero head with the pipe submerged is a lot more than this picture with a little head to overcome.

120 Things in 20 years, Aquaponics - Powerhead zero head test. I have an ear ache.


  1. This is not an advert. I dont sell dye. Would pink dye enhance the visibility of the flow for the demonstration video.

  2. Yeah it might. Or even a tea bag.

    Good one, thanks Mary.

  3. Trimurti, you interesting comment intrigues me, and I would like to subscribe to your news letter/join your religion.

  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  5. Trimurti, your ads will be deleted from now on.

    I realise you're a bot, but I thought I'd be polite and let you know anyway.

    Two ads is at least one too many.

  6. I think that zero head it is feasible to move the water back and forth between FT and GB on some kind of perpetual movement triggered by floats or weight filled with the flowing water. But where do we get the energy for aeration ?

  7. In my system there is no air used.

    All my oxygenation comes from the movement of water, and the fish tank water's exposure to the atmosphere. Just like a river in nature.

    All you need is to make sure the surface of your fish tank keeps turning over.

    In a calm lake, there is plenty of dissolved oxygen at the surface, but not much when you get down a bit deeper.

    When you add an air-stone to a fish tank, much of the aeration is achieved by the fact that it stirs the water by bringing a flow up with the bubbles. This gives the surface a new "face" many times a second, and allows all the water to be exposed to the atmosphere.

    Just keep it moving and it will be fine.


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