The dutch translation of this page still needs to be reviewed, it is highly inaccurate, incomplete and probably full of errors! It is only a rough translating by Google Translate!

7.2.6. PP EVA Pads

The data from the master table for PP and EVA pads is:

Calculation of surface area for PP and EVA Pads
Calculation of surface area for PP and EVA Pads

This calculation is extremely rough as these pads vary considerably in the degree of reticulation and in the pore size. But it appears by testing that this data is relatively good for the Matala blue EVA pads.

There are a whole series of bonded semi-rigid fiber mats or pads sold for filtration. The very coarse open pads are made of polyester fibers, PP (polypropylene) or EVA (ethylene vinyl acetate) plastic. Matala pads and Japanese mats are probably the two versions used most. Their cost is $40 to $80 per cubic foot and $26 to $72 per 100 square feet of biofiltration surface so they are a viable option for both a submerged static biofilter and a trickle filter.

Symphysodon aequifasciatus discus
Symphysodon aequifasciatus discus

We tested the blue Matala pads in a test of filter media with regards to ammonia oxidizing capability. The pads came out quite surprisingly well in the test. This means they are viable candidates for biomedia in things like canisters and sumps.

A test of ammonia oxidizing capability of various filter media was run. The first number, the “efficiency” is the average ammonia oxidizing that 15 cubic inches of media accomplished over a 90-day period. The second number is the “effective” surface area in square feet per cubic feet calculated from that test. The third number is the effective surface area in square feet per cubic feet calculated by simple mathematics. The correlation between the test results and the calculated surface area is very significant and means the testing was accurate.

Media“Efficiency” from two tests“Effective” surface area ft²/ft³Effective” surface area cm²/cm³ ft²/ft³ from mathcm²/cm³ from math
Fluidized K1 medianot tested540nana
30 PPI foam17340400
Pot scrubbers1428080
Static K1 media13260200
20 PPI foamnot tested220180
Aquarium gravel6120120
Blue Matala pads5100120
Eshoppe bioballs510060
¼ to ½ inch lava rocks36060
Biohome ultimate24030
Ceramic rings24040

The higher the numbers here the better the media. This makes 30 ppi foam the best static media for canisters and ceramic rings the worst. The Blue Matala pads had decent performance.

The polyester fibers in Japanese matting are very thin and the density of the product is very low. While we didn’t test these mats we suspect they will not perform as well as Matala pads. The pads are just too open to retain much in the way of brown gunk.

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