Tank Of The Month – TOTM March 2020

Pedro Gomes’ 102-gallon reef tank, run by the GHL System

  • Tank owner: Pedro Gomes
  • Location: Madeira Island, Portugal
  • Display volume: 385 liters / 102 gallons
  • Display size: 1.1m x 0.7m x 0.5m/approx: 43in x 28in x 20in

SPS Dominant reef Acroporas dominant plus a few LPS and Soft coral.


Hello, my name is Pedro Gomes and I’m from Portugal. Thirteen years ago, I was researching some ideas for my home koi pond in an online forum and navigated to the saltwater aquarium section.  I found myself very intrigued and soon after I decided to purchase a nano tank which is where it all began for me. In the beginning I was ordering things for the tank piece by piece which was a lot of fun. It was then that I knew I had found my passion and was truly hooked on reef keeping. 


My Island Reef

The hobby got really serious for me after the nano tank when I started what I refer to as the “Island Reef.” Living on Madeira Island in Portugal inspired me to create my aquascape and reef layout in the form of an island. At that time, I was using the full Coral System by Korallen Zucht and had a massive amount of Acroporas.

Then came my higher education, which took me to London. There was no way I was going to break down my tank. Instead, I had my family do the routine maintenance for me while I was studying in London. It had almost no automation except basic temperature control and an ATO. With my tank camera, I was able to monitor it remotely. I really looked forward to coming home for the holidays and seeing my tank again up close and personal.

Upon moving home, I wanted to build a bigger and better “Island” reef tank. I had learned a lot over the years, and there were things that I wanted to address to make managing and maintaining a new system easier, which brings me to my current tank.

I started my new Reef

with a ProfiLux 4 Mega Set and 2 GHL Dosers. Since I was dosing Triton Core7, I needed at least 4 channels, so next were the accessories and there were lots of those to be added.

The systems main display is 385 liters/102 gallons. It has a total volume of about 450 liters, including the remote sump. Being an IT person that loves electronics and automation, I went all-in with this tank.

The system is fully automated and controlled by my ProfiLux 4. For my automatic top off (ATO), I use a GHL Optical level sensor. When the optical level sensor is triggered, the ProfiLux activates a GHL Solenoid valve, which then allows RODI water to gravity feed into the sump.

I also have a mechanical float switch just above the optical sensor that acts as a high-water level alarm. When the high-water level sensor is triggered, the skimmer turns off and I get a notification from the ProfiLux. My Profilux Touch is positioned next to my tank, giving me quick and convenient insight into the tank’s parameters.The following GHL products are installed which allow me to monitor and manage my tank, whether I am at home or away.

• Temperature – alarms if temperature moves below or over the set value by 1.5c
• pH Probe 1 monitors tank pH
• pH Probe 2 controls the Co2 going into the calcium reactor while the ProfiLux controls the Co2 regulator to maintain a constant pH of 6.3 in the reactor
• ORP probe monitors tank ORP and gives me insight into the water quality
• Salinity probe triggers alarms if any major salinity swings occur
• KH Director monitors alkalinity which is always very consistent since the calcium reactor keeps everything very stable
• Leak sensor in the sump area emails an alarm if activated
• ProfiLux emails daily tank parameters including alkalinity levels at 7:00 PM
• ION Director is on pre-order to be set up upon arrival

KH Director_TOTM_03_20

When the KH Director got launched,

I knew I had to have it so I immediately pre-ordered it.  It’s turned out to be an essential part of my controller system which as a whole, really brings me peace of mind.

For cooling, I use a GHL Propeller Breeze 4X to help to keep tank temperature from getting too warm. Heating is handled by 2x Schego 250w titanium heaters, which are also managed by my ProfiLux. The calcium reactor is fed by my GHL Doser Maxi running 48L/day, divided into 72 operations.

For my sump, I wanted something special, so I talked with Seadreams and asked them to design a sump according to my requirements. It had to look great, incorporate a built-in refugium, and be easy to maintain. It took a while for them to build but was well worth the wait.

The simple design of the sump makes it very efficient and easy to maintain. The water comes from the main display into an air trap that eliminates the microbubbles and then flows into the refugium. The water flows across macroalgae before overflowing into the skimmer compartment. My protein skimmer is a Royal Exclusiv Bubble King Double Cone 200 that I’ve had for around eight years now. I’ve upgraded the pump on it to the RD3 and, it has served me very well over the years.


For my return pump, I run an EcoTech Marine Vectra M2. It runs at 100% which I feel gives me the perfect turn over through my sump for my system’s water volume.  Circulation inside the tank is handled by 4 EcoTech Marine MP40QD all synced together to create the high energy currents needed in an SPS dominant reef system.


Livestock: Corals

  • Acropora Effoescens
  • Acropora Hyacinthus
  • Acropora Aculeus
  • Acropora Formosa
  • Acropora Sarmentosa
  • Acropora Abrotanoides
  • Acropora Desalwi
  • Acropora Echinata
  • Acropora Gomezi
  • Acropora Millepora
  • Acripora Spathulata
Acropora Suharsoni
  • Acropora Tenuis
  • Acropora Valida
  • Montipora spp.
  • Pavona Decussatus
  • Caulastrea Curvata
  • Euphyllia Divisa
  • Duncanopsammia Axifuga
  • Micromussa Lordhowensis
  • Palau Litophyton sp
  • Zoanthus sp

Livestock: Fish

  • Platinum Clown Amphiprion percula (1)
  • Yellow tang Zebrasoma flavescens (1)
  • Purple Tang Zebrasoma xanthurus (1)
  • Fake leopard wrasse Macropharyngodon ornatus (1)
Powder Brown Tang Acanthurus japonicus (1)
Blue Sapphire Damselfish Chrysiptera springeri (2)


Pincushion Urchin, Hairy Tripneustes gratilla (1)
Strombus Conomurex Snail Strombus Conomurex (2)
  • Trochus Snail Trochus sp.(24)
  • Turbo Snail Turbo fluctuosus (12)
  • Cleaner shrimp Lysmata amboinensis (1)
  • Peppermint shrimp Lysmata wurdemanni (12)

Equipment List

  • GHL ProfiLux 4 Mega Set
  • 1 GHL Power Bar 5.1
  • 1 PLM-pH/Redox
  • 1 Temp sensor
  • 2 pH sensor
  • 1 ORP sensor
  • 1 Conductivity Electrode
  • 1 GHL Touch Display
  • 1 GHL Solenoid
  • 1 GHL KH Director
  • 3 GHL Doser 2.1
  • 1 GHL Doser Maxi
  • 1 GHL Optical Level Sensor
  • 1 GHL Float Switch Level Sensor
  • 1 GHL Leakage Sensor
  • 1 GHL Sensor holder 1
  • 1 GHL Level Sensor Holder Base Unit
  • 1 GHL Level Sensor Fastener, angled
  • 1 GHL Level Sensor Fastener
  • 1 PropellerControl-2.1
  • 1 GHL Gen 2 Propeller Breeze 4X
  • 3 Ecotech Marine Radion XR30w Pro Gen4
  • 1 Ecotech Marine Radion XR15w Gen4 Freshwater – Refuge light
  • 1 Ecotech Marine Vectra M2 Return Pump
  • 4 Ecotech Marine MP40w Quiet Drive
  • 1 Ecotech Marine Battery Backup
  • 1 Ecotech Marine Reeflink
  • 1 Royal-Exclusiv Double Cone 200 with RD3 pump
  • 1 Titanium grounding probe
  • 1 Vertex RX-C 6D Calcium Reactor with Triton Media
  • 1 S&P extractor fan – forces outside fresh air to come into the sump area
  • 1 Ubiquiti AP – giving full speed WiFi Coverage to the ProfiLux
  • 2 Dahua Dome IPCAM – monitors sump area and aquarium