Magnesium is an essential part of chlorophyll, which is necessary for photosynthesis. Without photosynthesis, plants, including algae and corals, would not be able to live.
Magnesium has another important function since it makes maintaining the correct combination of calcium concentration and alkalinity possible.
Calcium forms with carbonates and bicarbonates an insoluble compound called calcium carbonate. Even without biological interference, calcium carbonate would be formed and would deplete calcium and alkalinity without fulfilling any function. In fact, it will scavenge many important trace elements as well lowering the trace element concentration. Magnesium slows down this negative process. The lower the magnesium concentration, the faster this negative process will take place and at a much lower calcium and alkalinity value.
Maintaining a correct magnesium concentration is therefore very important and is indirectly responsible for fast coral and calcareous algae growth by virtue of making the maintenance of correct calcium and alkalinity figures possible.
Magnesium is depleted by algae and is also depleted by the use of excessive kalkwasser and by going far beyond natural calcium, alkalinity, and pH values.
The Salifert magnesium test is very straightforward and does not suffer from calcium and strontium interferences. It measures in sufficient, accurate steps of 30 mg/L with a sharp color change. The kit can perform approx. 50 measurements.
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