SYNOPSIS: I am gearing up to design an "environmental" system for my chamber (Heating, Humidification, Ventilation and Air Conditioning... so I guess it's "HHVAC").
-I'd love to hear some of your suggestions, and descriptions of your setups. I would rather not charge blindly into this while I can prolly get some decent advice right on this forum.
I have a 48" long x 16" high x 15" deep custom acrylic chamber. I never designed a lid for the thing, so I build a wood frame and made a temporary lid with plastic wrap recently. I will be designing a better lid soon which will totally enclose the chamber.
In the mean time, I need to design an environmental system! My priorities are
I suppose I could incorporate a heater and such, but that is not the main purpose of my little system (a seed bed under the chamber may work, all I am using currently is a big water bottle and an aquarium heater -takes up too much space).
The "virtual design" so far consists of several elements. The specifics have not yet been determined (power of air pump, humidifier and fans). I don't know if I'll have to worry about a specific cfm (cubic feet/min) for airflow, or if I'll just 'wing that mother'.
One Ultrasonic Fogger (mainlandmart.com)
One aquarium air pump
Three or four CPU fans
Seed heating blanket? Or other type of heater? I'm more of a fan of heating the aquarium by radiation or conduction, not convection (ie. heater in ventilation system)
Cooling is not really an issue. The 2x2 48" shoplights do not generate much heat. However, if any of you have good ideas for cooling, bring em on!
Three ventilation fans in chamber (I may do away with the Vent IN fan because it may not be necessary with the air pump... but it still seems like a good idea):
One medium-flow fan mounted high at left side of chamber for ventilation IN to the chamber, two low-flow fans mounted high and low at right side of chamber for ventilation OUT.
There will be a flex-tube or some other wide vent tube connected to the Vent IN fan. This tube will lead to a Y junction. The Y Junction is connected to a fogger and an air pump or fan or something.
The fogger will be an Ultrasonic fogger or some sort (mainlandmart.com). There will be a resevoir in which the disc is placed (duh). This resevoir is connected to fan, connected to a hose that leads to the Y juntion. There will be a valve on the foggers side of the junction -that way the air pump may ventilate without humidifying.
The fogger will be connected to a humidistat (70% min).
That just about does it for the humidifier.
On the other end is an aquarium air pump -at least that's what I'm thinking I might use right now-. This air pump is also wired to the humidistat so the fogger has a means of getting it's fog into the chamber. Otherwise if the humidistat activated the fogger while the air pump was off, it would have little force behind it.
Ahead of the humidistat, there will be a timer to control the air pump (approximatley "whenever I feel like it").
As I previously mentioned, there will be two smaller fans at the other end of the chamber, mounted high and low. These fans will expel air from in the chamber at set intervals (don't know what those invervals are, tho). I thought about having them operate when the Vent IN fan operated, but it seems like that may just push the fresh intake air right out the other side -that would make the whole ventilation system moot if that happened. So I may try
"expel old air"
"intake fresh air"
-humidity is independent (of the exhaust).
That's just about all I can think of at the moment. I wish I had a drawing to show, but I have no web space.
Questions? Comments? Please let me know what you think, and what your experiences have been!
Does something work well for you? Obviously this is not a perfect system yet. I know there are some things that don't add up, but I've only been working on this for a day or two now.
Obviously I'm trying to have an un-obtrusive system. I don't want any unsightly apparatus laying around my living room, and more importantly I don't want to have glasses of water and stones and several different apparatus cluttering up my chamber. Two small fans in one side. One medium fan (couple inches) at the other side connected to a hose which leads to the "air/fog farm" stored nearby.