My experimenting with siphon just about over, its good. Never wanted to missed this opportunity, so I embark on a long quest to far far away places and end up in my backyard to try and achieve this. I dream a lot, thinking and rethinking to make it, once I have an idea I'll put it to paper and as below is my vision how a binary flow divider should be.
This flow divider make use of a "shuttle valve" that will divert alternately between 2 growbed. This shuttle valve is move by two diaphragm in turn triggered by siphon suction as water start to siphon out from the watered growbed. This suction move the shuttle valve which will cause water to be routed to the other "waiting" growbed until siphon started and the process repeated.
Sound easy, yes it should be easy.
I called it the "Binary Valve", and yes Aquaponics has gone digital. I have tried a proof of concept model it work, but more needed to be done to ensure trouble free operation. This Valve synchronise to a siphon. This valve don't need any special siphon to do, just an ordinary stand pipe bell siphon. Water cutting out not required to be done by the siphon, binary valve take care of it.
My trial, as follow. What you need are:
Two of this, to make the actuator diaphragm housing.
Or any of these plastic tub, like ice cream container will do nicely too.
Make a big hole on its cover, while another hand hold a camera.
and another on its buttlike this, and put an aerator hose connector (or a tiny butt plug) in it. You can have it centred if you want, I drill on the thickest part still it cracked.
Put a 15mm or 1/2" tank fitting on the cover after the hole made. Cut off excess threaded part to ensure adequate clearance for the diaphragm later on.
2 pieces of plastic as diaphragm, these the best I could do for now. This is one item need improvement.
The plastic sheet should be install like above later after more item done on the binary valve.
A make shift shuttle valve, I need to make this better just like the one on the diagram or I could use rubber tap washer. That blue rod is a balloon stick, you can use anything similar.
Above how a shuttle should be, using a rubber tap washer on a rod. This shuttle valve is very critical component of this divider, it must be able to be move freely without much restriction.
Should look like this after install, this is mid position, it should be extreme left or right.
Mount the 2 lid on this valve assembly, I ran out of Tees, so only 2 Tees use the other is a hole drilled on the pipe.
Mount the plastic sheets on the end of the balloon stick. I use rubber end cap here to hold the plastic. A small screw with 2 plastic disc sandwich the sheet would do.
The finished assembly, mounted on water inlet. The shuttle valve is not tight fit so lots of leak. This is proof of concept, a lot more work needs to be done to make this use able. Only 2 tees use, I ran out of tee. I'll make better ones and test again.
Shown above when the siphon triggered it will move the shuttle across to provide inflow to the other growbed.
How it work.
- As siphon started, there will be suction created inside the bell, this suction is the muscle power for moving the shuttle.
- Suction will cause diaphragm to expand pulling the balloon stick, repositioning the shuttle.
- Shuttle will divert water to the "waiting" growbed.
- "Waiting" growbed recieve water, once filled its siphon will flush, repeating the process as above and routing water back to the earlier growbed.
This alternate action is controlled by the siphon, so it will be in synchronise with siphon and do not need any external control.
Okay, the holy grail just about to be broken.... I could be a "Holy Man"..... :)