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DIY aquarium question (odd one)



 
 
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  #1  
Old September 20th 04, 01:22 AM
Ethan
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Default DIY aquarium question (odd one)

Saw an aquarium at a local college yesterday that had to have been 8'
deep. It was definitly a salt water aquarium.

I have a question, that I can't seem to find an answer to. How hard
would it be to build such an aquarium? All of the glass thickness
calculators I can find don't seem to handle sizes that large. I just
got done reading someone who used 3/4" lexan and it failed, dumping
out 850+ gallons of water... His tank was 45" deep and very wide...

I'm assuming it would require at minimum 3" thick glass? I plugged in
4' wide, 10' long and 7' deep and it came back to 2095 gallons...

I'm just wondering if this would ever be feasable. Obviously the
ground is an issue, as 2095 gallons of water would weigh 17,462
pounds. Just hope it sinks evenly :-)

The aquarium I saw a the college was most likely 16 or 20' long, not
12. I was wondering about this some time ago, and seeing such a thing
live got me curious again. I'm sure they dropped a good hunk of money
for the thing, the building was funded by a local multi-millionare. I
have no idea how much large peices of glass cost (standard storefront
stuff isn't cheap), then comes the issues of stress, wieght due to
depth, it sinking into the ground, and building a ROV to clean the
thing.

Not sure if such a thing would help or harm the resale value of a
house. I guess if it's 7' high then there has to be some sort of 2nd
story access to the top.

Just curious if anyone has ever run across such a thing in either a
commercial or residential environment. I couldn't find anything via
google related to tanks that large.

Any information or web links appreciated.
  #2  
Old September 21st 04, 03:30 AM
Bob K.
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Just curious if anyone has ever run across such a thing in either a
commercial or residential environment. I couldn't find anything via
google related to tanks that large.


Big tank at ________ hotel/casio in Las Vegas ..
(sorry, can't recall the name) A marine tank, but *BIG*..
But then, Monteray Aquarium's main show tank is, what? 25' deep?


  #3  
Old September 21st 04, 01:23 PM
Ian Smith
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On 19 Sep 2004 17:22:46 -0700, Ethan wrote:

I have a question, that I can't seem to find an answer to. How hard
would it be to build such an aquarium? All of the glass thickness
calculators I can find don't seem to handle sizes that large.


I believe that structural glass aquaria don't work above about 3' deep
- beyond that, the silicone doesn't have sufficient strength to hold
the joints together. If you go bigger than that, you need a frame
that takes the loads, and the structural behaviour potentially becomes
quite different.

regards, Ian SMith
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  #4  
Old September 23rd 04, 06:05 AM
Ethan
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I believe that structural glass aquaria don't work above about 3' deep
- beyond that, the silicone doesn't have sufficient strength to hold
the joints together. If you go bigger than that, you need a frame
that takes the loads, and the structural behaviour potentially becomes
quite different.
regards, Ian SMith


Right... from what I've found so far reinforced concrete would
probably be the proper material for the tank, with the exception of
the front window. Of course, it would take a hefty piece of glass or
acrylic (probably glass?). Not to mention sealing it... I'd imagine
the concrete would be covered with some sort of epoxy or other coating
similiar to that used for in-ground swimming pools. At 7' high, 10'
wide and 4' deep it would be something like 18,500 pounds. I'm not
sure if that would sink into the ground? Center of gravity would be
kind of high too.

This school had one, it was probably 16' wide, and 8' deep at least.
It looked like the water actually went above the window, but there is
a possibility the window was just masked off.

Still digging, there is zero information about such a thing. I'm
surprised no one has attempted it?
  #5  
Old September 24th 04, 12:34 PM
Ian Smith
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On 22 Sep 2004 22:05:28 -0700, Ethan wrote:

This school had one, it was probably 16' wide, and 8' deep at least.
It looked like the water actually went above the window, but there is
a possibility the window was just masked off.

Still digging, there is zero information about such a thing. I'm
surprised no one has attempted it?


Well, tourist attraction aquaria go way bigger than that - the London
Aquarium has a shark tank that you walk past a window into teh tank
near teh way in, wonder around for a bit, go downstairs to the next
floor down, and walk past another window into the same tank, which
carries on further down even than that floor.

That's a reinforced concrete structure, with acrylic viewing panels.
It is odd from a structural design case in that it's almost entirely
underground, and it's in saturated ground due to the proximity of the
River Thames. If they empty the tank, it actually tries to lift - the
weight of teh concrete is less than teh bouyancy of the empty tank in
teh saturated ground - so it has tension piles to hold it _down_.

regards, Ian SMith
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  #6  
Old March 29th 11, 06:54 PM
samuellwarner samuellwarner is offline
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Posts: 5
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I accept that structural bottle aquaria don't plan aloft about 3' deep - above that, the silicone doesn't accept acceptable backbone to hold the joints together. If you go bigger than that, you charge a frame that takes the loads, and the structural behaviour potentially becomes quite different.
 




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