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Pond Aerators and Lake Aerators - Hydro Logic

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Hydro Logic Pond and Lake Aerators - Specifications
AirLift Aeration: An Overview
AirLift Aeration: Choose From Ten Different Models
AirLift Aeration Sizing Guide
Why Aerate Your Pond or Lake?
The Benefits of AirLift Aeration
The AirLift Aeration Advantage
How Does AirLift Aeration Work?
AirPod Air Diffusers – The Most Durable!
Pond and Lake Ecology and Watershed Concepts
Lake Water Quality Data – Before and After AirLift Aeration

Hydro Logic Products (Hydro Logic) is the manufacturer of AirLift pond and lake aeration systems. Hydro Logic’s mission is to provide their customers with the highest quality, most reliable aeration systems on the market today! AirLift pond and lake aerators are designed and built to completely mix and aerate ponds and lakes. AirLift pond and lake aeration systems use billions of micron sized bubbles to cost effectively improve water quality. Hydro Logic offers two different product lines to meet all of your lake and pond aeration needs. Both the AirLift™ and AirLift XL™ aeration systems were designed and field-tested by a team of highly qualified and experienced professional lake managers and engineers. In addition to reliability, AirLift™ and AirLift XL™ lake and pond aerators were designed to be extremely energy efficient, thereby allowing you to enjoy low operating and maintenance costs for years to come. Hydro Logic AirLift aeration systems are second to none when it comes to performance, energy efficiency and durability.

The AirLift series are used for ponds and lakes with maximum water depths up to 35 feet. AirLift™ aeration systems contain up to six AirPod air diffusers. Each AirPod contains a single EPDM tubular air diffuser. Conversely, the AirLift XL series are most often installed in deeper ponds and lakes with maximum water depths ranging from approximately 20 to 35 feet. Therefore, owners of deep ponds and lakes can take advantage of this fact by installing our AirLift XL aeration systems. This can often result in a substantial cost savings since less weighted air supply tubing is needed. AirLift XL aeration systems contain up to four AirPod XL air diffusers. Each AirPod XL contains dual EPDM tubular air diffusers for maximum water lifting and mixing capabilities. AirLift and AirLift XL aeration systems are equipped with the highly reliable, energy efficient dual piston air compressors. Compressed air from the compressors is transported to AirPod and AirPod XL air diffusers using uniquely fabricated, sinking air supply tubing called DownUnder sinking or self weighted aeration tubing. Overall, Hydro Logic’s AirPod and AirPod XL air diffusers were carefully designed to maximize water lift rate and transfer rate of dissolved oxygen to the surrounding lake waters. The AirPod and AirPod XL air diffusers are installed along the lake bottom and release billions of tiny bubbles. Most of the bubbles typically range in size from 500 to 1,000 microns in diameter. Next, these micronsized bubbles force deep lake waters to the surface, thereby resulting in complete lake mixing. In addition, dissolved oxygen is readily transferred from these tiny air bubbles to the surrounding lake waters.

Benefits of Pond Aeration
  • Increase Dissolved Oxygen Concentrations
  • Reduce Buildup of Poisonous Gas
  • Eliminate Stress to Fish & Aquatic Organisms (fish kills)
  • Reduce Release of Noxious Odors
  • Increase Water Clarity (Transparency)
  • Reduce the Accumulation of Sediments
  • Reduce Algal Blooms (Algae)
  • May Reduce Nuisance Levels of Aquatic Plants
  • Reduce High Metal Concentrations
  • No Electricity in the Water
  • Reduce Nutrient Releases by Anoxic Sediments
  • Warranties on all System Components
  • Improve the Quality of Fisheries
  • Reduce Mosquito populations
  • Lower the risk of spreading West Nile Virus
Why Aerate your pond or lake? A tool used by professional lake managers

Many ponds and lakes contain moderate to high amounts of nutrients (namely, phosphorus and nitrogen). Elevated nutrient levels can adversely impact fish, other aquatic organisms and water quality during the summer months. Too many nutrients in ponds and lakes can result in accelerated rates of eutrophication.

Eutrophication is a process whereby pond and lakes excessive nutrients that stimulate excessive plant growth (algae and aquatic plants). Dissolved oxygen concentrations can severely decline when large amounts of algae (algal bloom) and aquatic plants begin to decompose. In turn, very low dissolved oxygen concentrations can cause other aquatic organisms to die. Nutrients can come from many sources, such as fertilizers applied to agricultural fields, golf courses, suburban lawns, soil erosion, streambank erosion and sewage treatment plant discharges. The symptoms of eutrophication are:

  • Low Dissolved Oxygen Concentrations
  • Poor Water Clarity (Transparency)
  • Control Algae (Excessive Amounts of Algae)
  • Excessive Quantities of Aquatic Plants (Weeds)
  • High Dissolved Metal Concentrations (Iron & Manganese)
  • Stress to Fishery and Other Forms of Aquatic Life (Fish Kills)
  • Shallowness Due to the Accumulation of Sediments
  • Nutrient Releases via Anoxic In-Lake Sediments
  • Buildup and Release of Noxious Odors

Professional pond and lake manager have a number of scientifically proven tools to properly manage eutrophic water bodies. One of the most common tools in their toolbox is aeration. Aeration is the process of adding more air or more specifically, more dissolved oxygen into the water. Aeration is frequently implemented with other lake management restoration practices such as applying algaecides and aquatic herbicides to control nuisance quantities of algae and aquatic plants, respectively.

The two most common methods for aerating ponds and lakes are installing pond fountains and diffused-air aeration systems. Of the two, diffused-air aeration systems are much more cost-effective and require far less maintenance. In many instances, water fountains will not completely circulate ponds and lakes if their water depths exceed five feet. In addition water fountains are prone to clog if substantial amounts of filamentous algae are present.

Many pond and lake owners find water fountains very attractive as a water feature. For these individuals, Hydro Logic recommends installing both water fountains and diffused-air aeration systems. This is especially true when highly eutrophic pond or lake conditions exist. Overall, the water fountains will primarily serve as attractive water features, while the diffused-air aeration systems will be responsible for providing the bulk of the water mixing and aeration.

Diffused-air aeration systems like the Hydro Logic AirLift and AirLift XL series can significantly improve water quality and ecological health of ponds and lakes. Increased dissolved oxygen concentrations allow for decreased amounts of available nutrients throughout the water body. This translates into lower amounts of algae resulting in improved water clarity. Aeration also allows for less noxious, poisonous gases (methane and hydrogen sulfide) to be generated. The end result is healthier ponds and lakes for fish and all forms of aquatic life.

Primer on Pond and Lake Ecology

The water quality of a lake is often described as a reflection of its surrounding watershed. The term lake collectively refers to reservoirs (man-made impoundments), natural lake systems and smaller ponds (man-made or naturally created). Water from the surrounding watershed enters a pond or lake as streamflow, surface runoff and groundwater. The water quality of these water sources is greatly influenced by the characteristics of the watershed such as, geology, soils, topography and land use. Of these characteristics, changes in land use (e.g., forested, agriculture, silviculture, residential, commercial, industrial) can significantly alter the water quality of ponds and lakes.

Nutrients (e.g., phosphorus, nitrogen, carbon, silicon, calcium, potassium, magnesium, sulfur, sodium, chloride, iron) are primarily transported to ponds and lakes via streamflow, surface runoff and groundwater, while sediments are mainly conveyed by streamflow and surface runoff. As streamflow and surface runoff enter a pond or lake, their overall velocity decreases, which allow transported sediments to settle to the pond or lake bottom. Many of these incoming nutrients may be bound to sediment particles and subsequently will also settle to the pond or lake bottom. Very small sediment particles such as, clays, may resist sedimentation and subsequently pass through the lake without settling.

Once within the pond or lake, water quality is further modified through a complex set of physical, chemical and biological processes. These processes are significantly affected by the pond’s or lake’s morphological characteristics (morphology). Some of the more important morphological characteristics of ponds and lakes are surface area, shape, depth, volume and bottom composition. In addition, the hydraulic residence time (i.e., the pond’s or lake’s flushing rate) also greatly affects these processes and is directly related to the pond’s or lake’s volume and the annual volume of water flowing into the pond or lake.

With respect to nutrients, phosphorus and nitrogen are generally considered the most important nutrients in freshwater ponds and lakes. Phosphorus and, to a lesser degree, nitrogen typically determine the overall amount of aquatic plants present. Aquatic plants adsorb and convert available nutrients into energy, which is then used for additional growth and reproduction. In ponds and lakes, aquatic plants are mainly comprised of phytoplankton (free-floating microscopic plants or algae) and macrophytes (higher vascular plants). The most readily available form of phosphorus is dissolved orthophosphate (analytical determined as dissolved reactive phosphorus), while ammonia and nitrate are the most readily available forms of nitrogen.

The transfer and flow of energy in ponds and lakes is ultimately controlled by complex interactions between various groups of aquatic organisms (both plants and animals). Algae (phytoplankton) and aquatic macrophytes (plants) capture energy from the sun and convert this energy into chemical energy through the process known as photosynthesis. During photosynthesis, carbon dioxide, nutrients, water and captured sunlight energy are used to produce organic compounds (chemical energy), which are then used to support further growth and reproduction.

Energy continues to flow upward through the food web. Algae are primarily grazed upon by zooplankton. Zooplankton are tiny aquatic animals that are barely visible to the naked eye. Next, zooplankton serve as prey for planktivorous (plankton-eating) fish and larger invertebrates (macroinvertebrates). In turn, plankitvores are consumed by piscivorous (fish-eating) fish. Overall, these aquatic organisms (zooplankton, macroinvertebrates and fish) derive energy by breaking down organic matter through the process known as respiration. During respiration, organic matter, water and dissolved oxygen are converted into carbon dioxide and nutrients.

At the bottom of the food web, particulate organic waste products (excrement or feces) from aquatic organisms along with dead aquatic organisms settle to the pond or lake bottom and are subsequently feed upon by other organisms. Organisms that live or reside along the lake bottom are referred to as benthivores. After settling to the pond or lake bottom, dead organic materials and organic waste products are now called detritus.

Some benthivorous fish (catfish and carp) and microorganisms (bacteria, fungi and protozoans) feed upon detritus. Aquatic organisms that feed upon detritus in ponds and lakes are referred to as decomposers. Decomposers obtain energy by breaking down detritus (dead organic matter) via the process of respiration. During decomposition, some of the nutrients are recycled back into pond or lake water and can now once again be used by algae and aquatic plants for growth and reproduction. Any unused detritus will accumulate and eventually become part of the lake sediments, thereby increasing the organic content of these sediments.

Ultimately, the amount of nutrients in lakes controls the overall degree of aquatic productivity. Ponds and lakes with low levels of nutrients and low levels of aquatic productivity are referred to as oligotrophic. Oligotrophic ponds and lakes are typically clear and deep with low quantities of phytoplankton and rooted aquatic plants. In these ponds and lakes, the deeper, colder waters are generally well oxygenated and capable of supporting coldwater fish such as trout. Conversely, ponds and lakes with high nutrient levels and high levels of aquatic productivity are referred to as eutrophic. Eutrophic lakes are generally more turbid and shallower due to the deposition of sediments and the accumulation of detritus.

In some instances, the flow of energy through the aquatic food web may be disrupted. In hyper-eutrophic (highly eutrophic) ponds and lakes, aquatic productivity is extremely high and is dominated by very large numbers of a few, undesirable species. The phytoplankton community is typically comprised largely by blue-green algae during the summer months. Many species of blue-green algae are not readily grazed upon the zooplankton community. Under these conditions, the blue-green algae community is allowed to flourish due to the lack of predation, while the zooplankton community collapses. Decreases in zooplankton biomass in a pond or lake may in turn adversely affect the lake’s fishery. In addition, shallow lake areas may be completely infested with dense stands of aquatic macrophytes and dominated by common carp, catfish or other rough fish.

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