Alright this is our first blog! I am new to blogging, but I think this could be useful in the discussion of LED lighting and Blue Moons fixtures.
The Blue Moon P30 LED sports a "true" 30W chipset surrounded by an enormous heat sync, and focused by a fish eye lens. Anyone who has built their own LED fixture, or even researched LEDs most likely ran into discussions about heat and the longevity of an LED. Blue Moon has tackled this obstacle with a massive heat sync to remove as much heat from the chipset as possible, the P100 LED is watercooled, and fan cooled (it looks like a part of the back to the future car...)
Can it keep coral? LEDs have come a long way over the past few decades, and I believe we are at a turning point for the technology. The costs of LEDs have come down and the benefits and advancements are making LEDs a "greener" and more efficient lighting option for many people already.
The info below comes from the Blue Moon aquatics Website
The color temperature and spectrum of the BMA 15.000K LED illuminations with its high lumen output replicate the intensity of the sun around a shallow coral reef. It combines its spectrum with a 460nm actinic range and has been created to achieve the blue chlorophyll absorption for zooxanthellae symbiosis.
Light absorption chart:
Most invertebrates and corals kept in a marine tank originate from shallow waters. Up to 10 ft depth nearly the entire “visible” colour spectrum of light is evenly spread. After all, already after only 3ft infrared light is absorped followed by the red, orange, yellow and green spectrum after 98 ft. Corals have developed diverse strategies to absorb nutrition in order to grow. For instance: On one side single coral-polyps can catch small particels with their tentacles and utilize these. On the other side certain organic compounds can be utilized directly through the polyps tissue. However, for the majority of corals the most important way to secure nutrition is the symbiosis with unicellular algea called dinofalgellates = Dinophyceae ( later on refered to as zooxanthellae).
These can not only be found in the majority of corals, but also in anemones, in certain turbellaria, in the tropical jellyfish Cassiopea and in giant clams Tridacna. While the mantle of these tridacna contains hugh amounts of zooxanthellae, they are not the reason for the gorgeous colours of most tridacna. The vivid colors are rather caused by pigments that the clam isolates in order to protect itself from harmful impacts of the sunlight.
The relationship of the tridacna with its zooxanthellae is more based on efficient recycling. The “waste” products of the clam are used by the algae as resource to produce nutrition that is than once again used by the clam, hence the circle is complete.
For corals: the zooxanthellae live in the tissue of the coral polyps and supply the polyp with several substances and oxygen that is created as part of the photosynthesis. The zooxanthellae have set themselves during evolution to absorb preferably light of the blue and partial red light spectrum. What happens within the zooxanthellae:
Part of the zooxanthellae is the colourant “chlorophyll-molecule” that
is used by the algea as a kind of “antenna” to absorb the energy of the sun in order to link carbondioxid and water to carbonhydrates. This colourant consists of two elements:
the blue-green chlorophyll a and the yellow-green chlorophyll b.
The chlorophyll a molecule is responsible to untilize the energy, while chlorophyll b is only responsible to collect light. Chlorophyll a is most active at a wavelength of 410nm to 430nm and partial around 662nm, while chlorophyll b collects the most photons at 453nm to 642nm.
What happens now between the zooxanthellae and the coral:
As written above, the zooxanthellae life in the tissue of the coral polyps and supply the polyp with several substances and oxygen that is created as part of the photosynthesis.
The polyp supplies the algea with minerals and trace elements (nitrogen, phosphor) and with the exhalated carbon dioxide. In addition the polyp is able to increase the carbon dioxide concentration in the tissue by splitting hydrogencarbonate with the help of the enzyme carbonanhydrase.
The carbon dioxide is used by the zooxanthellae whereby the carbon is shifted to carbonate.
Carbonate in higher concentrations can not be dissolved in water. Therefore carbonate breaks down to lime. The polyp than stores the lime and coordinates it as foundation of its skeleton. In the course of time the coral grows.
More details about the Blue Moon Aquatics LED illumination:
As mentioned above a blue accenting illumination combined with a full spectrum light of a 15.000 K temperature bears the most desirable lighting to keep and grow corals. To create such light the benefits of LED lighting come especially handy:
While traditional lighting has often several peaks across the entire color spectrum, the spectrum created by the Blue Moon Aquatics LED is exactly set to the desired spectrum.
Looking at the color spectrum of the Blue Moon Aquatics illumination the uniform curve shows besides the desired increase of the actinic range an evenly spread natural spectrum curve with a reduced red spectral range to ensure a remarkable growth of all corals and invertebrates with endosymbiotic algea.
Learning, growing, and keeping our tanks inhabitants healthy is the largest part of what any aquarist does. We believe that when education and technology come together you can get better results, more efficiently, and in a more environmentally friendly way. LEDs consume less energy (P30=250W MH), there is no bulb replacement (MH bulbs house mercury), and you get a brighter, more vibrant light and shimmer.