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For aquarium or terarium controll
Automatic aquarium controller

Lots of people have in home some type of aquarium and nowadays is increasingly emerging trend of new technologies and improvements such as LED lighting with automation. I will describe my version of the automation unit, which provides automatic LED control lights, temperature and aeration, programmable via computer ...
Some time ago I decided to buy an aquarium, after a long search on the internet I chose Aquatlantis Advance 80. This is the aquarium set that is suitable for beginners. It features LED lighting, filter, heater and filter-pump, which should be enough for a start. The aquarium has a capacity of 96 liters and dimensions of 80x30x40 cm.
Since I enjoy Electrical I decided to do my automate controller for aquarium. In Ebay I bought some parts and began to build .This automation system can do several things:

- Time management for LED lighting 0-100% (1 channel)
- Time management for additional LED lighting 0-100% (2 channels)
- Time switch sockets for 230VAC (2 channels)
- Temperature control (1 channel, 1 socket 230VAC for heating element)

These function, except for temperature control, provides programmable LED controller TC420, which is able to control the fifth channel, depending on the time and mode settings. These functions are preset via the USB port on the computer in easy software. Time is adjustable 00:00 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. I think the max. of 99 steps, steps can be set from 0 to 100% of either of the step (JUMP) or beveled (FADE) on all five channels separately. This LED controller is able by itself to drive a LED lighting 12-24VDC, so I had to add an additional module with relays (SSR) for switching two sockets at 230VAC. The controller must be set to either 0 or 100%, all in JUMP mode that has switched / off relay. When set to 100% or 0% (JUMP) output controller is switched on or off, in case of another set value, the output is switched PWM, which ensures maximum driving efficiency for LED controll.

The function of temperature control ensures temperature controller WTS-3A016. This controller acts as a thermostat, with a digitally adjustable temperature sensor is waterproof (10k NTC) and for aquariums fully sufficient as the range -20 / + 100 ° C. Power is 12VDC, as well as the controller and attached LED lighting. The temperature can be adjusted at will, for the aquarium typically 23-28 ° C. The smallest hysteresis which can be set to 1 ° C. This controller has a display accuracy of 0.1 ° C, but the temperature setting is performed throughout the stages, however, for aquariums certainly sufficient, the temperature is thus maintained in the ranged between one degree in the set range (for 26 ° C is the minimum temperature of 25 ° C and max. 26 ° C set). The thermostat is equipped with a mechanical relay, but I traded it in for semiconductor relays (SSR), partly in order not to hear the clicks and for greater reliability. The relay controls the outlet connected to the heater, it is obviously larger set temperature by about two or three degrees greater than be standart set. In case of failure, the controller will then stop right heater temperature thermostat.
Okay, so now we have LED programmable controller and a digital thermostat, you've bought it as cheaply as possible - on Ebay. Although it is China, like everything today, the quality of performance is more than adequate and a small adjustment of the thermostat on SSR should give you these devices last for years.
As another part of the automation unit I created PCB with solid state relays for switching sockets with fuses. As a power supply i used the Meanwell RS-75-12 (12VDC / 6A).

Main board with relays and fuses still has LED indication closed relays (substandard are connected in series with the SSR, so I knew possible failure optocoupler SSR). All the outputs are connected to the third switch position in order to control (outlet and LED outputs) and manually and in position 1 - automatic, position 0 - off, position 2 - closed (in case of LED Max. Light).
Indicative list of components and prices:

- LED controller TC420 = 700 CZK
- Digital thermostat including sensors SSR = 300 CZK + 150 CZK (SSR-RC)
- PCB with fuses and SSR = 250 CZK + 250 CZK
- Box (KP14) Switches (TS123) sockets (1662) = 160 CZK, 120CZK, 200 CZK
- Source Mean Well RS-75-12 = 480 CZK
- Other (CANNON15 connector, LED, wires, switches, network filter) = 300 CZK

Overall the automation unit price climbed to approx. max. 3,000 CZK. However, in comparison with the professional unit of the same magnitude, it is only a fraction. For example can serve unnamed LED automation unit, which controls only one channel LED lighting and only in default mode dimming. The price for such a simple module is around two thousand CZK.

Price aquarium Auatlantis Advance 80 is around 3,800, aeration transformer you can buy for approx. 300-700 CZK, other things needed for the aquarium they went on about. 3000 CZK. In total, for the aquarium equipment and accessories you pay something around 7 500 CZK.
Now a little talk about the actual function of my device. Of the three possible programmable LED outputs while using one and the main lighting in the future I plan to add more red light (located near the main LED), which would simulate sunset and sunrise in the red spectrum of light (some more expensive LED lights have been red LED components). On another channel would then could connect additional illumination within the water in the aquarium, even illumination of the volcano.
At the switched outlet got involved aeration, heater (socket connected through the thermostat) and the filter pump, that is obviously off does not, but still, even in the exchange of water is needed to turn it off, instead it can be connected to any equipment needed ozone for clean water or CO2 valve ... the options are plentiful.
Programming is via PC freeware program for controlling the controller. Temperature settings directly via the thermostat, both are very simple. The thermostat is set with the SET button ,temperature hysteresis "d" is set to "1" and other values ​​can be "0", except limits range mode is "AH" - heating. Everything is more fully described in the supplied manual.

Programming LED controller itself (and in our case with sockets) extends the program. Basically, you can adjust the increments in each step to set the clock and the status of all channels. In my case, after half an hour in 24-hour mode is 49 steps, I think the maximum is 99, which should enough. If you do not happen any change, you can skip the time and specify, for example, you have only 2 steps that are within a specified time everything closes at 00:00 and at 10:00 everything off. Steps therefore need not necessarily be so. Each summary of steps you can identify any individual and make such arrangements, there can be set up with multiple modes depending on the season, or even "cleaning mode" or something similar will. Switch modes without a PC, using the buttons on the controller. A detailed description of the programming is here: http://www.tc420.net/programming-the-TC420.php.

Times and intensity of lighting and aeration is individual, but it is necessary to observe the rules for the proper operation of the aquarium. For running-light is required approx. 6 hrs. Daily, and if the established aquarium is around 10 hours. Air Pumps should not be long patches with full sunshine during the day, but when the light is off, it should air more often due to the lack of oxygen for photosynthesy plants. Additional lighting decoration is of course completely individual and any Ozonation or CO2 for plant growth no longer leave it to an expert assessment.
Mainly for general lighting, I created a excel chart that shows the lighting of the tendency of the aquarium and the influence of sunlight (actual for early winter), an aquarium, although I have placed on the wall opposite the windows, but the sunlight is there gets well enough. Everything is depends on the season, you can therefore easily be set 12 modes for each month. Simply put, keep my light around 10 am, when the sun shines, and linearly decrease the intensity, and then when I turn off. Eventually I want to add a red LED to simulate sunrise / sunset . Aerator switch on certain 0.5-1. h. Intervals. But everything depends on factors such as the aquarium, chemical water values, the number of plants and fish in the aquarium ... The aquarium'm a beginner, so I recommend only read articles on internet, or some professional publications to learn more.

Graf spínání všech kanálů - OSVĚTLENÍ, VZDUCHOVÁNÍ ...

Construction ::

-- Block schematic--

Main PCB : Layout

Main PCB : Schematic



All component list

Resistors :

  1. 390R/0.6W / (R5,R6) / 2x
  2. 470R/0.6W / (R10) / 1x
  3. 68R/3W / (R11,R12, TEMP.CONT.) / 3x
  4. 560R/3W (OPTIONAL) / (R13,R14,R15) / 3x
  5. VCR10D391KAR ( VARISTOR, Uac/Udc=250V/320V, RM7.5) / ( R1,R2,TEMP.CONT.) / 3X

Capacitors :

  1. CFAC 47n / 275VAC (X2,RM15) / (C1,C2,TEMP.CONT.) / 3x
  2. 1000nF (63V, TANTAL) / (C3,C4) / 2x

Semiconductors :

  1. S216S02 SHARP (SSR RELAY, 16A/230VAC) / (K1,K2, TEMP.CONT.) / 3x
  2. P600K (DIODE, 6A) / (D4) / 1x
  3. GREEN LED, 5mm / (D1,2,3) / 3x

Others :

  • S1G20 2,54mm (PINS) / (JP1,2,3,D1,2,3) / 12x
  • JUMP-UCH BLK (JUMPER) (JP1,2,3) / 3x
  • SPK-2 (JUMPER CONNETOR, 2PIN) / (JP1,2,3,D1,2,3) / 6x
  • SPK-PI (PIN TERMINAL) / (JP1,2,3,D1,2,3) / 12x
  • KS-PTF78+BS232 (FUSE HOLDERS) / (F1,2,3,4,5, TEMP.CONT.) / 6x
  • 5X20 FUSE 1A / (F1,F2, TEMP.CONT.) / 3x
  • 5X20 FUSE 3A / (F3) / 1x
  • 5X20 FUSE 5A / (F4,F5) / 2x
  • ARK500/2 / 7x
  • ARK500/3 / 2x
  • 1662 (230VAC SOCKET) / (SCK1,2,3) / 3x
  • KP14 (Z-17) (PLASTIC BOX) / 1x
  • MEAN WELL RS-75-12 (PSU) / 1x
  • POWER FILTER FEH51104 / 1x
  • PHOTOCUPREXTITE FR4 75x100x1,5 / 1x
  • CONTROLLER TC420 DC12V/24V 5 Channel / 1x


-- There are some photos --