Automation of Marine Aquarium: A New Era in the World of Reefing

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For many years, marine aquarium keeping has been one of the most demanding and time-consuming hobbies. Aquarium owners had to dedicate numerous hours to monitoring water parameters, maintaining filtration, lighting, and ensuring optimal conditions for their marine inhabitants. However, thanks to technological advancements, we are now witnessing a revolution in the world of marine aquarium keeping – the automation.

Automation of a marine aquarium involves the use of advanced technologies and systems that enable the automatic monitoring and control of water parameters and other aspects related to maintaining a healthy and balanced marine ecosystem. As a result, aquarium owners can enjoy the beauty of the underwater world without having to spend hours on daily maintenance.

Monitoring Water Parameters

One of the key elements of automating a marine aquarium is the water parameter monitoring system. Using sensors and specialized software, parameters such as temperature, pH, ammonia level, and nitrate levels in the water can be measured. If these parameter values exceed the desired ranges, the system automatically notifies the aquarium owner to take corrective actions. This helps avoid sudden changes in the aquarium environment that could negatively impact the health of fish and corals.

Here are a few systems for monitoring water in a marine aquarium:

Neptune Systems Apex: Apex is an advanced monitoring and control system that offers a wide range of features related to marine aquarium keeping. Equipped with various sensors, it monitors water parameters such as temperature, pH, ammonia level, and many others. It also has remote control and notifications, allowing you to monitor your aquarium from anywhere.

GHL ProfiLux: ProfiLux is a comprehensive monitoring and control system that provides precise measurements of water parameters. It includes sensors for monitoring temperature, pH, conductivity, redox, and other important values. It can be easily integrated with other devices in the aquarium and allows for remote control through a mobile application.

Smart Reef: This is an innovative system for managing a marine aquarium. It has sensors for monitoring temperature, pH, conductivity, salinity, KH, as well as calcium, magnesium, and PO4 and NO3 levels using Smart testers. With a convenient application, all the results appear online, enabling access to device control from anywhere in the world.

Hanna Instruments: This is a series of user-friendly colorimetric instruments that offer accurate measurements of water parameters in a marine aquarium. They have different models that allow for the measurement of parameters such as pH, nitrates, phosphates, calcium, and others. They are compact, portable, and excellent for regular monitoring of water parameters. The downside is that they require manual use and lack online results.The choice of the appropriate water monitoring system depends on the individual needs and preferences of the aquarist. Each of the mentioned systems has its unique features and advantages that can be helpful in maintaining a healthy and balanced marine ecosystem.

Automatic Filtration

Another important element of automation is the automatic filtration system. Advanced filters can be programmed to remove water contaminated by food residues, fish waste, and other organic pollutants. These systems can also monitor and regulate water flow, ensuring proper circulation and maintaining biological balance in the aquarium. Examples of such devices include protein skimmers or “smart” roller filters that are increasingly available.


Lighting is another aspect of automation that plays a crucial role in maintaining the health of corals and other photosynthetic organisms. Modern lighting systems can be programmed to simulate natural light cycles, providing appropriate intensity and color of light at different times of the day. Additionally, they can be equipped with light sensors that automatically adjust the lighting intensity based on external light conditions. With online applications, aquarists can model the lighting over their marine aquarium and adjust its changes according to the inhabitants in their underwater world.


Automation of a marine aquarium also includes dosing and nutrient delivery systems. This allows aquarium owners to precisely control the amount and timing of nutrient components necessary for maintaining proper growth and coloration of corals. These systems can be configured for regular dosing of liquid supplements or dosing of ingredients in the form of microgranules.

Finally, remote control is an incredibly useful tool in aquarium automation. Aquarium owners can remotely monitor and control their aquariums using smartphones, tablets, or computers. This allows them to check water parameters, adjust filter and lighting settings, and even feed fish when they are away from home.

Automation of a marine aquarium opens up a new era in the saltwater aquarium hobby, allowing enthusiasts to enjoy the beauty and tranquility of the underwater world without the need for excessive time and effort. With advanced technologies, marine aquariums become more sustainable, and fish and corals have a greater chance of healthy development. Automation of a marine aquarium is the future that is already available to all marine aquarium enthusiasts.

About author

Picture of Jarek Wojczakowski

Jarek Wojczakowski

I have been a marine aquarist for over 8 years. The first marine aquarium fascinated me with this underwater world and showed how many challenges await the aquarist. During this time I learned a lot and used my passion for programming and creating electronic devices to create the Smart reef system. Together with a great team, we have created Reef factory and every day we create solutions that make our work with our marine aquariums easier. By the way, we share our results with a large number of aquarists 🙂

Half a year ago I switched to a new, larger aquarium and became much more interested in the chemistry of seawater. In addition, I am fascinated by automation and making my life easier.

For over 5 years I have been co-creating the Reef Factory company, where I am responsible for the development of devices and software. The company deals with the creation of modern devices and software for marine aquaristics.