What’s in NeoMarine:•Anhydrous-only forms of major elements•Average Mg, Ca, K, and Sr concentrations of 1,290-, 413-, 399-, and 8 ppm, respectively•All non-conservative minor and trace elements found in seawater•Sufficient salt to reconstitute purified water of the stated package volume to 1.025 g/cm3•Our commitment that this salt blend is the best you have ever used
What’s not in NeoMarine:•Anti-caking agents•Vitamins, amino acids, and other unnecessary organic substances•Hydrated forms of major elements such as magnesium and calcium•Saltwater evaporite (e.g. dehydrated saltwater)•Ammonia*•Phosphate*
*Ammonia and phosphate are undetectable in water prepared to 1.025 g/cm3 using Hach standard test kits with reagents within the usable dates. Every batch is tested and results are logged.
How was NeoMarine formulated?Basically, we reverse-engineered saltwater by creating an extremely-precise calculation method that takes into account all necessary chemical characteristics of the salts that provide desirable elements. Natural seawater concentrations of all major elements, as well as the minor and trace elements that are considered to be non-conservative (e.g. they are utilized in biological and chemical processes that occur in marine environments), were used as the design template. We then tested several combinations of ingredients that ultimately provided identical concentrations of each important element (except chloride, which was the only ion that varied in concentration); we were specifically interested in assessing the dryness and homogeneity of the blend, as well as the solubility and speed with which the blend completely dissolved into solution. For what it’s worth, the final formulation provides all major, minor, and trace elements at concentrations within 0.000001% (with the exception of chloride) of their respective average natural seawater concentrations. We strive to reproduce this formulation with our production process.
How was NeoMarine tested?Once we had arrived at a final formulation, we tested it in multiple research systems for a period of three years. Our research systems house all conceivable types of marine fishes, cnidarians, bivalves, gastropods, echinoderms, crustaceans, coelenterates, and poriferans, as well as ancillary organisms such as suspension-feeding worms, macroalgae, sea grasses, and mangroves. We have exclusively been using our salt formulation on every system during the three-year testing process, with remarkable success: several coral spawning events have taken place, fishes have reproduced, and the coloration and apparent health of all residents in the systems is very good. Additionally, NeoMarine has been successfully used in a large reef aquarium on display at a prominent national museum in the Nation’s Capitol.
How is NeoMarine manufactured?We’ll give you a hint: no cement mixers are used! The exact process is deemed proprietary, but what we can divulge is that the process is such that a homogenous particle size and blend are created in a clean, climate-controlled atmosphere within our own production facility. Rather than producing several tons of NeoMarine in each batch, we create batches of modest-size that enable us to maintain maximum quality control and ensure the most homogenous blend; the more ingredients that are used, the more difficult it is to create homogeneity throughout the finished product (our formulation makes use of nearly 40 ingredients, for reference), so producing gigantic batches of salt is not an option for us. If we were just blending table salt with “ice-melt” and Dow flake and calling that a finished product, we could make multi-ton batches and not lose any sleep doing so.
How long does it take for NeoMarine to dissolve?On average, 75F water that has the proper amount of NeoMarine added to increase the specific gravity to 1.025 g/cm3 will clear in less than 15-minutes with vigorous mixing, however when mixing a large batch (e.g. ≥50-gallons) all at once it may take longer for the mix to completely clear. Two things factor into the speed that a salt mix will clear in water of a standardized temperature: the degree of mixing taking place within the mixing vessel, and the solubility of the various salts that are present in a mix. Regarding the former, it can be said that the speed of dissolution is directly related to the amount of water movement in the vessel; that is, faster water movement decreases the time required for the mix to completely dissolve and clarify, assuming that samples are prepared using the same salt blend. Companies selling sea salt blends have been hyping the speed with which their salt dissolves completely for so long that aquarists now use this as a bench-mark to judge the quality of a salt mix; ironically, salts that mix immediately into water are typified by low concentrations of magnesium, calcium, and/or the use of a large percentage of highly-soluble hydrated ingredients that drag unwanted substances into their final product (see the following section). Honestly, salt water should mix overnight in order to allow all intermediate gasses formed during the dissolution process to escape and pH and alkalinity to become stable. If the newly-mixed saltwater doesn’t become crystal-clear within 30-seconds, who cares?
Why is NeoMarine more expensive than other brands?As with all items baring the Brightwell Aquatics name, we do not cut corners in any aspect of the salt formulation or preparatory process. The primary reason that the salt is higher-priced is that the ingredients are of such high purity that they command a higher price from our vendors; for instance, because we use superior grades of anhydrous magnesium salts rather than low-grade hydrated forms (which contribute ammonia and insoluble particulate material into a finished product), our cost increases by an order of magnitude. However, we wouldn’t use hydrated magnesium (or calcium) salts for the afore-mentioned reason, not to mention the additional weight that these salts add to a finished product (which factors into the final price that is paid at a retail-level as a result of the resultantly higher freight charges). Simply stated, NeoMarine is more expensive because it truly is made of better ingredients, and more of them. Furthermore, rather than prepare water to only 1.018 - 1.021 g/cm3, each container of NeoMarine prepares water to 1.025 g/cm3. In this aspect alone it costs us more to manufacture than it does our competitors whose salt blends fall short of this specific gravity. We run a chemical analysis for pH, alkalinity, calcium, ammonia, and phosphate on each batch of NeoMarine produced; this costs us money. Lastly, we manufacture NeoMarine and all other Brightwell Aquatics supplements and filtration media in-house using precision equipment that can be used for the production of foods and pharmaceuticals, we pay our personnel a good wage, and we are privately-owned so our operating expenses are expectedly-higher than those of many of our competitors.
In summary, we would like to make it known that we did not set out to create a salt blend that was superior to other salts in one aspect or another; that was never a consideration. Our intention was to make a salt blend that recreated all important aspects of natural seawater with such precision that captive marine organisms couldn’t noticeably tell the difference between water prepared with our salt and “the real thing”. To us, this approach merely makes the most sense, and we believe that your aquarium inhabitants will agree. Thank you for your interest in Brightwell Aquatics; we sincerely appreciate it. Oh – and remember: it’s more than an aquarium. It’s an obsession.
- Product Specs
Manufacturer Brightwell Aquatics