Being a former “ZEOhead”, I’m all too familiar with all of the time, effort, and energy required to tumble and agitate the Zeolite stones in the plunger-style reactors. Couple that with the fairly intense dosing regimen, and many hobbyists are scared off by all of the additional work just to run this setup. Fortunately, the acrylic fabricators at AVAST Marine Works are making this system significantly easier with the development of their new automatic Zeolite reactor. Seen in the video above, this prototype reactor doesn’t try to go the same route as other automatic reactors by injecting a significant amount of air or water to tumble the stones. Instead, the AVAST reactor is turned on its side and rotated with the help of a small motor and acrylic gears. As can be seen in the video, all of the Zeolite stones get stirred up, which is usually not the case for other automatic reactors as they typically only tumble a portion of the stones. To make the reactor automatic, all that is required is plugging it into a timer or an outlet on your aquarium controller.
A few details about the available models can be seen below.
When we first saw this reactor, one of the first things we were concerned about was the size. Real estate under the aquarium is so vital, and a horizontally oriented reactor will chew up some of that space. When speaking with AVAST, they are fully aware of this and are working to make the reactors as small as possible without losing functionality. To help ease some space concerns, the reactor can be mounted on a shelf, provided there is a shelf and some extra space. As of right now though, the inlet and outlet barbs on this prototype have to face upward in order to engage the locks on the reactor. This is another thing AVAST is working on so that the overall setup can be mounted sideways if users wanted to screw the mounting legs into the walls of the stand.
As for models to be offered, AVAST Marine Works is currently planning four different models that will hold either 1L, 2L, 4L, or 7L of media. The smallest one is aimed at aquariums less than 100 gallons, with the largest model capable of handling aquariums up to 800 gallons. We were only told the dimensions of the reactor shown in the video, which is roughly 25″x6″ and holds 2L of media.
Prices were not discussed, as the auto Zeolite reactors are still in the prototype phase. All that is left to finalize is little of the final design, as well as some ease of use and some fit and fish type details.