Exciting news! The scientists behind the Mindstream Aquarium Monitoring System have announced that they will be showcasing and demonstrating their product at MACNA this year! Aquarists have been eagerly anticipating this news since the product was first mentioned nearly two years ago. This monitoring system uses a patented fluorescing optical system to read concentration levels of 12 different aquarium parameters, including pH, alkalinity, NH3, NH4, NO2, NO3, Ca, Mg, K, O2, and CO2. It then uploads the information to its cloud every 15 minutes, where the data is accessible to the user free of charge (there will be no monthly fee). While the Mindstream monitoring is automatic, the device requires aquarist to replace the test foil every 90 days.How does the optical system work, you ask? Mindstream’s inventor explains: The technology has been adapted from the biomedical field and utilizes fluorescent ionophores developed for each chemical parameter being measured. These complex molecules become more or less efficient in converting light of one wavelength to another, based on ion concentrations. Ten sensor foils are placed on the rotating sensor disc, where they are exposed to pulses of ultraviolet light. The resulting fluorescence is measured by precision optics and electronic circuitry and sent to the cloud where complex algorithms calculate the chemical level. 24 optical measurements per sensor on the disc are performed on each reading assuring the integrity of the measurement. In the rare event the optical scan detects fowling, an alert will be sent and a gentle cleansing will solve the problem. For updates and to contact the company, visit Mindstream’s facebook page. I’m looking forward to seeing this innovative product in person at MACNA this September!