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Features of the redox potential of water

Many of the interactions that occur in nature are redox. In the water, there are always substances acting as oxidizers or reducing agents. Depending on what type of substance prevails, the water acquires a negative or positive redox potential.

This value is also called the redox potential (from the Latin words “recovery” – reductio and “oxidation” – oxidado).

The value of the redox potential of water is very useful to know. According to the indications of GP in what forms are certain substances in the water.

Their digestibility by the inhabitants of the aquarium flora directly depends on this.

High positive ORP values ​​mean that many microelements, having oxidized, will pass into a form inaccessible to plants. Without the ability to produce vital elements, plant crops will slow down growth significantly or stop growing altogether.

A similar situation is usually attempted to be solved by adjusting the daylight and feeding plants. Often this does not give a positive result because of the disturbed balance of oxidizing agents and reducing agents in the aquarium.

Fertilizers do not digest.

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Favorable aeration of water and its saturation with oxygen is considered favorable for inhabitants of artificial reservoirs, since a high concentration of this component in water is extremely important for fish.

For plants, a similar situation may be unfavorable. A large amount of oxygen means that water has a high ORP.

All trace elements entering the water are rapidly oxidized by active oxygen. Being in the form of oxides, they can no longer be absorbed by plants.

Excessive ORP also inhibits photosynthesis.

There is also a dependence of this indicator on temperature. Its increase leads to an acceleration of metabolic processes, and therefore, to a greater need for the inhabitants of the aquarium in oxygen.

At the same time, the concentration of the substance itself decreases with increasing water temperature, respectively, and ORP also decreases.

Adding fresh water to the fish tank also leads to an increase in AFP. If there are plants in the aquarium that are sensitive to an increase in this indicator, replacement of the liquid should be done in small portions. The oxidative potential also increases:

The use of ozone and peroxide is often justified for certain problems and diseases of fish, but it must be extremely careful.

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Low values ​​mean that the medium of reducing agents prevails in water. This term is commonly referred to as organic matter., those that enter the water as a result of the vital activity of aquarium inhabitants, as well as some inorganic compounds that can actively interact with oxidizing agents.

Reduction of the redox potential occurs when the aquarium is significantly contaminated with organic matter (fish waste, food debris). Most of these substances accumulate in the ground. These include:

  • hydrogen sulfide;
  • ammonia;
  • methane;
  • sulfur compounds;
  • ammonium salts (nitrates and nitrites);
  • magnesium compounds;
  • iron compounds.

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All of these compounds accumulate in the ground, leading to a decrease in the redox potential of the liquid.

In the presence of a large amount of reducing agents in water, oxygen is absorbed, resulting in a lower ORP. This situation may be beneficial for plants., but dangerous for representatives of the animal world of the aquarium.

In order to maintain a balance in which animals in the aquarium receive sufficiently vital oxygen, and the plants are saturated with the microelements they need, control the ORP values.

Measurement of this indicator is made by ORP-meter. It is expressed in millivolts (mV). There is also a biochemical value of the reduction potential of Hydroqenii redox potential, which is expressed in arbitrary units of rH.

In the literature there are tables by which values ​​in millivolts can be converted into arbitrary units of rH.

In natural freshwater bodies, the ORP values ​​fluctuate between 25 and 35 rH. Under aquarium conditions, the zone of comfortable existence of hydrobionts is slightly smaller — from 26 to 32 units of rH. In some sources you can find the values ​​of the redox potential, comfortable for certain plants.

For some of them, the maximum level for comfortable life is 27 units, when it is exceeded, the plant dies quickly. Others may exist with 32 units.

When settling an aquarium, it is necessary to take into account the peculiarities of each inhabitant. Fishes that need a high level of oxygen should not be planted in aquariums with plants that cannot withstand an increase in AFP.

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