There is exciting news which makes saving the ponds and estuaries of the Cape and Islands possible and affordable.

On Martha’s Vineyard our recharge water comes from 80 billion gallons of annual rainfall, 40 billion gallons of which percolates down through vegetation and soil so it has low oxygen content before it becomes groundwater, while the other 40 billion gallons recharges our tributaries as direct runoff carrying the excess load of additional nutrients from all of the developed land in the watershed into the tributary. In summer this feeds our estuaries and ponds with cold, oxygen-deprived, nutrient-rich water and creates dead pond bottoms which leads to dead ponds. Oxygenating and mixing this water as soon as possible on its way into tributaries would be a major step in raising average dissolved oxygen levels. Aerating a tributary is like adding rapids and a 100-foot waterfall to the path water takes from cloud to estuary. Increased oxygen enhances all natural processes, including nitrate mitigation. Oxygen speeds and enhances shellfish propagation, seaweed growth, marsh development, marsh grass harvesting, etc., which should also be employed but in the short term we can now meet any dissolved oxygen minimum we choose to afford.

The great news is there is a newly patented tool to infuse water with essential dissolved oxygen that could save our ponds and waterways for 1/1000th the cost of sewering, and with immediate and measurable results. The VaraCorp Turbine Aerator is literally a quantum leap in the physics of raising dissolved oxygen levels. It is now state of the art in oxygenation technology.

VaraCorp’s revolutionary aerator was introduced to the world market after nearly 10 years of research and development in Europe. Already it is the subject of physics forums in which professionals and laymen alike are trying to understand how it performs its amazing feat of aeration.

The turbine was awarded a patent because it captures a new understanding of the physics of precession combined with centrifugal force. It functions opposite current self aspirating aerators. Other aerators push water into air. The air cloud turbine (my name) does not disturb the water it spins in. The turbine moves air only, so it’s only resistance is air. Air is a thousand times less dense than water. Negative pressure caused by air being drawn down the tube into the chamber within the turbine causes air molecules to expand before they are expelled out of the turbine by centrifugal force and explode into the water. This accounts for the microscopic bubbles which create an underwater cloud of oxygen and the reason a two or three horsepower motor can infuse up to 16 litres of air into water per second. This process saturates a water body with almost 50,000 cubic feet of air per day.

The ex-stream efficiency of this new technology is why it is obvious this new dissolved oxygen generator is capable of making a significant contribution to cleaning tributaries and tidal estuaries. And it is why I have brought one to the Island to demonstrate. It is my hope that the folks who did the research in The Massachusetts Estuaries Project will embrace this technology and focus on raising dissolved oxygen to as close as possible to natural levels.

The VaraCorp Turbine also has a proven ability to accelerate the growth of the microbes that consume hydrocarbons so well it should be mandatory in marinas, commercial and industrial harbors and a part of every oil spill response kit. The turbine has an unusual ability to oxygenate water under an oil slick without disturbing the slick. Pristine is possible!

Donald Muckerheide
Oak Bluffs