Aquarium Lighting

The main challenge of marine aquarium lighting is to provide 8 to 10 hours of artificial light to take the place of natural sunlight.

The tropical reefs of the world receive about 12 hours of natural sunlight everyday.

Sunlight fuels photosynthesis which feeds photosynthetic corals and their symbiotic algae.  Photosynthesis also causes phytoplankton to bloom, forming the basis of the ocean’s food chain.

Lighting A Saltwater Aquarium

Marine Aquarium Lighting

Without sunlight, photosynthesis would cease, phytoplankton would perish and the oceans and all its inhabitants would die.

Of course it would be impossible for us to duplicate the power of the sun in our own living rooms.  But fortunately, the marine inhabitants in our care are remarkably adaptable and can adjust to less light than they would receive in the oceans.

In the following pages, we will discuss the different types of lighting that are commercially available to the modern saltwater aquarium keeper:

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