LOL! I like that
Actually, I am trying to get the droplets to swirl around the chamber, so I guess this could be called a micro-droplet accelerator! Im targeting roots instead of nuclear particles, but close enough
Im hoping that alternating swirl action will make for better, and more even coverage of the roots. The first pair of nozzles will circulate the mist clockwise, and the second will circulate counter clockwise. Im going to mount the nozzles near the bottom of the chamber then angle them mostly pointing up but tilted to they cause the swirling action.
The main reason for trying this alternating technique has to do with the catch 22 of HPA - at least according to Atomizer's theory.
The ultimate setup would provide a constant supply of droplets in the 50 micron size range - BUT - you do NOT want the roots to be overly wet or overly dry. If they have water beading up, thats too wet. If they get dry, well thats obviously not good either.
From what I have read, a large % of HP folks leave the nozzles on too long - according to Atomizers way of thinking. That means the roots are getting too wet by his standards. Then they leave the nozzles OFF for several minutes to let them dry out. So the roots go from too wet to dry, and back to too wet.
The result is roots that are little different from what you can get with LP aero or NFT type setups, etc, which are a lot less effort, and cost.
His goal is super fine fuzz on the roots, like in this pic.
Contrast that root to the ones I got in my LP cloner. These roots look good, and have lots of latteral growth, but do not have those super fine hairs.
His recommendation is to try to create an environment for the roots that is much more uniform, and does not go from too wet to too dry.
That requires very short ON times and shorter OFF times than most use. In order to reach his target numbers - a max of .06 ml/gallon of root chamber/discharge cycle. The trick with that low a flow rate is to also get good coverage of the entire chamber and all the root mass. For the size chamber I am looking at, that means ON times of around .5 to 1.5 seconds and OFF times of around 1 minute.
Thats 'relatively' easy using AA because you can control the amount of mist better, and get better droplet sizes at lower flow rates and pressures. The trade off is cost. The nozzles start around $120 ea, plus a silent compressor, etc etc.
With regular hydrolic HPA nozzles, you can get good droplet sizes, but it requires higher pressures and you have to deal with significantly higher flow rates.
You need a decent sized chamber to allow the roots room to spread out and grow down. Its seems they can and will grow sideways in the air with no support.
The catch 22 is that large chambers typically need more than one nozzle to give good coverage of the entire root mass and chamber. More nozzles = more flow rate, and more droplets into the chamber at each cycle. That tends to over wet the roots.
By alternating pairs of nozzles, and reversing the swirl, Im hoping I can get the flow rate down to his recommended rate while still covering the entire chamber with a nice even mist.
I could jsut use shorter ON times, but you run into another catch 22 there. There is a certain amount of lag time in each of the parts as far as pressure increasing and decreasing during each ON cycle. This is due to flex and stretch in the tubing, plus the time it takes for solenoids, and the NO Drip nozzles, to open and close. They don't open/close instantly. While they are in transition, the pressure at the nozzle will be ramping up or down rather than remaining constant. That means the droplet size, and patterns are also not ideal during those times. So the beginning and end of each cycle creates less than idea droplets and mist.
That means the shorter the ON time is, the worse the over all droplet quality is.
Thats a long winded way to say Im trying to beat the builtin deficiencies of inexpensive HPA hardware. We wont know how successful I am until some roots start to show up.