The new formulas of Red Sea Salts the result of years of research into the physiological demands of corals in the reef aquarium environment.
These formulas are made with natural sodium chloride from the Red Sea that provides an unparalleled formulation and homogeneity of all trace elements, with part of the living reef in every harvested grain.
Red Sea Salts unique combination of the formulas and natural ingredients guarantees coral health and vitality.
The new Red Sea salts formulas are a fundamental part of Red Sea’s new Reef Care Program, providing you with the ability to maintain advanced reef keeping results.
The Source of Red Sea Salts
The Red Sea, a seawater inlet of the Indian Ocean lying between Africa and Asia is one of the most beautiful, exotic and fascinating natural wonders on earth. The Red Sea supports the world’s northern-most tropical reef and is an oasis of living creatures, reefs and coral formations, many of which are unique to the region. The Red Sea is blessed with the largest diversity of marine fauna of all tropical reefs around the world and has the highest density of coral per cubic meter of sea.
The unique bio-diversity of the living reef inside this magnificent region is our inspiration and the Red Sea is the source of our salts, allowing us to bring you a blend of science and nature with the living reef in every harvested grain.
Red Sea Salts Harvest
From the pristine waters of the Red Sea, seawater is taken and transferred through a number of shallow ponds undergoing a natural evaporation process under the dry heat of the desert sun.
In the first pond, the seawater evaporates from its natural salinity level of 40 ppt to a salinity of approximately 250 ppt, removing all of the calcium and heavy metals from the water in the process. In subsequent ponds, further evaporation leads to the formation of sodium chloride crystals leaving other ions such as magnesium and potassium, in concentrated brine. At the end of the evaporation process, this brine is drained away. The remaining crystals of raw sodium chloride undergo a proprietary process of washing and drying to remove organic and any other impurities.
The end result is pure, white, food grade crystals of sodium chloride that comprises 47 of the other elements which are naturally present in the Red Sea. This element- enriched sodium chloride forms the basis for both of Red Sea’s salts mixes and provides a blend of science and nature with the living reef in every harvested grain.
Free from excessive levels of heavy metals or organics, this sodium chloride, with its natural array of minor and trace elements represents over 72% of the contents of Red Sea Salts delivering a level of quality and homogeneity almost impossible to match artificially.
The final stage in the Red Sea salts process is to add a mix of calcium, magnesium, potassium and other elements consistently to the sodium chloride. This is done by working in small batches with strict quality control measures.
The absence of excessive levels of heavy metals in our Red Sea Salts materials prevents the need for chemical binders that adversely affect the function of protein skimmers.
The Red Sea Salts Foundation Elements …It’s all in the balance
Natural seawater includes over 70 chemical elements and although most of the elements influence the water parameters, a few of them have a more significant role in its overall chemical stability.
These elements form the foundation of the reef environment and they include the three major elements: calcium, magnesium and bi-carbonates. These three ‘foundation elements’ have a major effect on the water chemistry (pH stability, alkalinity, seawater ionic strength) and on many of the coral’s biological processes (skeleton formation, ion- exchange, photosynthesis).
Unlike the natural reef environment, where there is an immense reservoir of the foundation elements, the reef aquarium has limited resources that are quickly depleted by the aquarium inhabitants. Therefore, in order to enable sustainable coral growth it is necessary to maintain higher than natural levels of the foundation elements.
Original research carried out in Red Sea’s laboratory has shown that in a closed system (an aquarium) a specific ratio between the foundation elements of calcium, magnesium and carbonates (alkalinity) is necessary for coral vitality and the formation of a robust aragonite coral skeleton. This ratio must be maintained especially when increasing the levels of the foundation elements above the natural sea levels.
Red Sea salts are made according to these ideal ratios and remove the need to adjust the levels of foundation elements after water changes and significantly improving the wellbeing of corals.
Corals build approximately 90% of their skeleton by combining calcium and carbonate ions from the water to form aragonite (CaCO3). The rest of the skeleton is made up from magnesite (MgCO3), strontianite (SrCO3), calcite (a more brittle crystal structure of CaCO3), CaF2 and other minor and trace minerals. The foundation elements complement each other in the formation of coral skeleton and, if not available in the correct ratio, one of them will quickly become the limiting factor of healthy coral growth.
Accelerated Coral Growth:
Corals need to invest energy in transporting the foundation and other elements necessary for skeletal growth from the surrounding water through their soft tissue. Elevated levels of the foundation elements create a more positive ionic pressure making this process much more efficient (less energy required per gram of skeleton).
Therefore balanced, elevated levels of the foundation elements will result in accelerated coral growth rates.
Effects of unbalanced Foundation elements:
In low levels of Mg²+ and/or Sr²+ coral skeleton will develop with a higher proportion of calcite making it more brittle and more susceptible to damage. Low magnesium or high calcium levels can lead to alkalinity drops. High alkalinity with calcium at saturation levels will cause precipitation, leading to low calcium levels.