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Re:C02 layer above water?

Phil Plumbo wrote,

>A recent question on this list sparked this one of my own:
>It seems possible that since CO2 is heavier than air, in
>some cases excess CO2 (i.e., those bubbles that don't
>dissolve) could collect in the air space above the water
>level of the aquarium, inhibiting 02 exchange. I should
>think that this might be a possibility in systems with
>poorly regulated CO2 (DIY?). Has anyone ever heard of this

Because of the very high diffusion rate of gases, gases of different
densities to not form layers for very long.  With the very low rate of
CO2 injection we use, any excess bubbles coming to the surace would
rapidly diffuse into the air and have no effect on the air over the

The only exception would be if you had a large accidental CO2 release
from a compressed gas system in a covered tank in which case the pH
drop and excess CO2 would kill your fish before ihibititing the O2
exchange would have an effect.
Jim Spencer
Sayre, PA

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