Editors of Aqua JournalEditors of Aqua Journal

Aiming for the ideal aquariums

In April 1992, Aqua Design Co., Ltd. was established by Takashi Amano, the founder of Nature Aquarium. Since then, ADA has continued to develop unprecedented products for growing aquatic plants and created ADA style product lineups until now. While incorporating successive technology and continuing to self-innovate, ADA continues to disseminate the world of Nature Aquarium that is to recreate nature in aquariums mainly from this magazine even after 30 years. In this special feature, we are publishing aquascapes in chronological order and introducing the history so far.

The arrival of the ADA phenomenon

Adding carbon dioxide had a major impact on how to grow aquatic plants, and the development of “CO2 System 74-YA/Ver.2” using small CO2 cartridge cylinders became the foundation of ADA’s current CO2 supply system. ADA also released “Pollen Glass” as a dedicated glass instrument for adding CO2 to aquariums. Natural CO2 addition which is to beautifully supply fine CO2 bubbles in the water had an advantage of preventing excessive CO2 unlike forced addition. After developing “NA Lamp”, the industry’s first fluorescent lamp for growing aquatic plants, ADA released a lighting fixture, “Green Glow/604” to the world. It enabled to grow various aquatic plants including heliophytes like Riccia fluitans healthily. Nature Aquariums created with the product lineup designed exclusively for Nature Aquarium were beautiful, and numerous published aquascapes received much acclaim as the ADA phenomenon.
The supply of CO2 and the high amount of light provided by dedicated lighting, made it possible to create aquascapes in which Riccia fluitans actively performed photosynthesis.
Aquarium: W90xD45xH45 (cm) / Shooting Date: November 1994

A new substrate era where aquatic plants showed their original appearances

At that time, the perspective of Takashi Amano (hereinafter referred to as Amano) was directed at the world’s three largest rainforests. In photos taken around the world, there were tropical primeval forests that no one had ever seen. Because of the influence from such photo-shooting activities, ADA released Aqua Soil with a concept of soil in the world’s three largest rainforests. Three types of soils such as “Amazonia”, “Malaya”, and “Africana” were added to the substrate soil series lineup. With the launch of the new substrate soils, making substrate systems with marine sand that was the mainstream up until then diminished. Moreover, with the commercialization of “Drop Checker” to make it easier to check appropriate CO2 dosages and “ECA”, a liquid additive effective for solving chlorosis in aquatic plants, it became possible to grow aquatic plants at a higher level. Furthermore, the long-sought “Super Jet Filter ES-600” was born. Its features are the high pump head and solid stainless-steel canister with a large capacity, and it became an indispensable gem to enjoy Nature Aquarium for a long time.
The Aqua Soil has nutrients that aquatic plants need and an effect on keeping pH mildly acidic. It became a foundation of new substrate. Africana was used to match the image of where the living things were originally from in this aquascape.
Aquarium: W120×D45×H45(cm)/ Shooing Date: April 1996
Besides ECA is effective against chlorosis in aquatic plants, it brought out vivid colors of red aquatic plants.
Aquarium: W60×D30×H36(cm)/ Shooting Date: 1997
By intentionally exposing Aqua Soil-Malaya that is suitable for Cryptocoryne, the aquascape offers an atmosphere of the natural habitat.
Aquarium: W90×D45×H45(cm)/ Shooting Date: June 1997
To be continued to the next episode of “Nature Aquarium Chronicle 2000-2009”.