Skip to main content
Fig. 5 | BMC Biology

Fig. 5

From: An automated aquatic rack system for rearing marine invertebrates

Fig. 5

ai Automated feeding system overview (see also Additional files 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12). a Front view of the feeding system and mini-refrigerator. b View inside the mini-refrigerator showing the equipment used to deliver the food. c Top view showing the feeding system microcontroller, 120-V AC outlet relay box, air pump, and peristaltic pump controller. The power cords for the stir plate and air pump are plugged into the relay box, and the two outlets are switched on and off separately by the microcontroller. d Close-up view of the peristaltic pump and associated Luer lock fittings that make up the food pump (see also Additional files 13, 14). Green and blue arrows show the directions of food and air flow, respectively. e The 1-l glass food reservoir sits on the stir plate. A non-contact, capacitance sensor monitors the level of liquid food inside the bottle (see Additional file 3F-H). The height of the bracket holding this sensor is adjustable to set where the alarm will trip (e.g., low food level). The bracket slides on a metal post that is screwed into a threaded hole located on the base of the stir plate. f View of the IR sensor that detects the presence and absence of food in the Teflon feeding line (see Additional files 9, 10, 11, 12). g View of the DC motor controller for the protein skimmer and a small microcontroller unit that regulates power to the skimmer (see Additional files 15, 16, 17, 18). h High magnification view of the Tunze DC motor control board showing the points where 30-gauge wire connections are made to the microcontroller (see Additional file 15). The small diode is removed and used to build the microcontroller. i View of the motorized bypass valve located behind the mechanical and bio-filters. Yellow arrows show two possible routes of water flow from the main water pump, below. The motorized bypass valve can direct water either to the right and through the various filters or to the left and through the bypass loop (during feeding). aa, articulated arm; al, air line; ap, air pump; bv, motorized main bypass valve; cs, capacitance sensor; dc, dc motor controller; dd, distal diode pad; di, diode; fr, mini-fridge; gnd, ground connection; ir, IR food sensor; lf, Luer lock fittings; mc, microcontroller; ob, outlet relay box; pc, peristaltic pump controller; pd, proximal diode pad; pp, peristaltic pump; pt, phytoplankton; rt, reservoir tubing; st, stir plate; ta, Teflon tubing adapter; yc, Y connector; +5vdc, + 5-V supply connection. Other labels are the same as those used in Figs. 1, 3, and 4

Back to article page