Microbead Biofilters

MicroBead™ Biofilters

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HTE Biofilter System

HTE Biofilter System

The MicroBead™ Biofilter (MBB) is a patented technology (patent number 6,666,965) that has been successfully implemented in commercial recirculating aquaculture systems since the early 1990’s. MBB Technology has proven itself as an extremely efficient, practical and cost effective biofilter solution for a wide range of aquatic applications including research, commercial and display aquaria.

The MicroBead™ Biofilter combines processes for CO2 stripping, oxygenation, nitrification, and fine solids capture into a single compact unit. MBB’s are operated in a downflow configuration where influent water is distributed over the top of the media bed. The water then trickles down through the media and gravity flows water out of the reactor vessel. Low-cost granular polystyrene biomedia provides an extremely high surface area per unit volume of roughly 1,200 ft2/ft3 (3936 m2/m3). Maximimum nitrification capacity in achieved in a small footprint. MBB’s have nitrification rates similar to high-rate fluidized bed biofilters, however the MBB™ has significantly lower capital and operating costs.

MicroBead™ Biofilters have several key advantages compared to traditional fluidized bed biofilters. Firstly, MBB’s will not “crash” during inevitable power outages or pump failures. The nitrifying bacteria that resides on the highly bouyant microbead media will survive for prolonged periods and remain aerobic even during temporary periods with little or no flow. Conversely, fluidized bed biofilters will turn anaerobic within 15-20 minutes of a loss of flow and nitrifying bacteria will rapidly begin to die. This event subsequently produces toxic hydrogen sulfide, which, when reintroduced into the culture tank on restart, is toxic to fish and can cause fish kills. For the safety of your valuable livestock, this is a crucial consideration!

MBBs’ cost of operation is roughly 50% less than traditional fluidized bed biofilters and pressurized bead filters. This is due to the ability of the non-pressurized MBB to operate with minimal hydraulic head pressure which allows use of low head pumps, minimizing pumping costs.

The capital cost of MBBs is also significantly less than comparable biofilter technologies since it does not use expensive plastic bead biomedia, pressurized vessels or complicated internal manifolds. Smaller scale MBBs are constructed with heavy-duty non corrosive materials that will last for many years in the harshest of conditions. The MicroBead™ Biofilter is a simple, efficient, safe, completely scalable, and cost-effective biofilter that can be applied to a wide range of recirculating aquaculture applications. Call us today for sizing assistance and to request a quote.

Biofilter - MBB 24

Biofilter - MBB 24

MBB systems are 100% scalable to any size recirculating system and are sized to attain desired water quality conditions a wide range of aquatic systems including:

  • Aquaculture Research Systems
  • Commercial Aquaculture Systems
  • Seafood Holding Systems
  • Public Display Aquaria
  • Breeding Centers
  • Broodstock Holding Systems

Units can be easily retrofitted into existing facilities or packaged as part of a complete recirculating system.


Max Feed Rates: (lbs per day w/ 48% protein dry feed)


x Ht.)



deg. F

52-59 deg. F

46-50 deg. F

x 96″
x 96″
x 96″
x 96″
x 96″

Perma-Beads™ Filtration Media

Perma-Beads™ Filtration Media

Perma-Beads™ Filtration Media

PERMA-BEAD™ media provides a permanent, non-channeling, non-clogging replacement for sand in any existing rapid sand filter. Our PERMA-BEAD™ media provides large interstitial spaces for trapping debris thereby extending backwash intervals and minimizing water loss. The unique surface properties and high density combine to create a self-cleaning media bed that refluidizes completely upon backwash. Complete, state-of-the-art, low-maintenance bead filters provide superior suspended particulate removal without the channeling and clogging found in all common sand, DE and cartridge filters.
  • PERMA-BEADS™ permanently eliminate clogging and channeling in all sand filters
  • NO PLUMBING CHANGES: Just take out the sand and pour in the Perma-Beads™. It’s that easy!
  • PROVEN PERFORMANCE: Over 20 years of continuous operation in thousands of filters worldwide!
  • SUPERB WATER QUALITY: With the addition of Perma-Beads™ in any make or model sand filter.


PHYSICAL SHAPE – Perma-Beads™ are specifically designed to replace sand in rapid sand filters. Perma-Beads™ do not have any flat or porous surfaces that can stick together as in sand or other angular or porous media. The smooth ellipsoid shape and central bulge of each bead prevents adhesion and bridging to other beads. This unique egg shape also creates large interstitial spaces between Perma-Beads™ trapping large quantities of debris thereby extending the time between backwashes while minimizing water use.

SURFACE PROPERTIES – The very hard surface properties of Perma-Beads™ prevent bacteria from etching into the surface and the very slippery surface allows even the stickiest waste to be scrubbed off when the bed fluidizes upon backwash. In fact, as Perma-Beads™ age, they remove smaller particles as a thin of nitrifying bacteria covers each bead. These are the same bacteria that creates bridging, clogging and channeling in other media, but in Perma-Beads™, this mechanism actually serves to trap smaller particles that are then easily removed in the backwash cycle.

WATER QUALITY -Since 1989, Perma-Beads™ have been used in thousands of filters, all are still consistently providing exceptionally clear water. The 4,520 square feet of surface area per cubic foot provide a significant surface area for supplemental biological filtration, especially when an oxygenated flow of water enters the filter canister, such as when an AQUACUBE is place near the suction intake in the pond.

EASILY INSTALLED – Perma-Beads™ The dense nature of Perma-Beads™ media (1cu. ft. = 55lbs.) prevents loss upon backwash while reducing the weight needed to replace sand by approximately 60%. The high density of Perma-Beads™ also eliminates the need for any plumbing changes when switching from sand to Perma-Beads™. Simply remove the sand and pour in the Perma-Beads™ .

PHYSICAL STABILITY– Perma-Beads™ never need replacement and can even be repeatedly sterilized using chlorine or muriatic acid without any adverse effects upon the Perma-Beads™. Perma-Bead™ media is now in continuous use in thousands of koi and ornamental pond systems as well as aquaculture and industrial sites.

HOW TO CONVERT SAND TO PERMA-BEADS™ – Take the sand filter manufacturer’s rating for pounds of sand, multiply by .6 and divide by 55. Round up or down to the closest whole number. This is the number of cubic feet you need.

Please call for a price quote including UPS shipping and any additional questions about our complete State-of-the-Art Perma-Bead™ filtration system.


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