Giesemann Aurora: Installation, Setup & Control
T oday we will introduce you to Giesemann’s elite lighting fixture, the Aurora. We will cover what makes this the very best all-in-one lighting fixture for reef aquariums, How to install and operate the fixture using a computer or mobile device.
Aurora is an advanced lighting fixture boasting both LED and T5 for the ultimate in aquatic lighting and wireless control via bluetooth. This fixture greatly reduces risk of localized bleaching under high intensity focal points.
Corals under the AURORA are literally bathed in light from a wide range of overlapping angles and multiple light sources to promote optimum health and overall color across the entire colony.
The Aurora Features
- Stylish Corrosion Resistant Body
- Tough twin-layer part-coated Iridium Finish
- Fully Dimmable T5 lamps
- 5 Fully Controllable LED channels
- Cloud, Storm and Real Time Lunar Simulations
- Multi-point Daytime Plot System
- Low Noise Variable Speed Cooling Fans
The aurora is available in 5 models ranging from 24in -72in.
- 24″ Aurora houses 4 x 24 watt T5 lamps and 20 LEDs
- 36″ Aurora houses 4 x 39 watt T5 Lamps and 40 LEDs
- 48″ Aurora houses 4 x 54 watt T5 Lamps with 60 LEDs
- 60″ Aurora houses 4 x 80 watt T5 Lamps with 80 LEDs
- 72″ Aurora houses 4 x 80 watt T5 Lamps with 100 LEDs
Before we install the fixtures over our tank, there are a couple of safety guidelines that we must take into consideration.
The Aurora is a fairly heavy fixture so proper mounting is crucial. The Aurora and its power supply unit are not waterproof. Be sure to mount the power supply AWAY from water and high humidity environments with proper drip loop and ventilation.
Each Aurora fixture comes with a suspension kit for easy variable height adjustments and appeal. Although not included with the fixture, The Aurora can also be mounted onto the tank with a stylish mount. Please make sure that your aquarium can sustain the full weight of the fixture.
Installing T5 Bulbs on Your Giesemann Aurora
Now that we’ve covered how to mount the fixture as well as the safety guidelines, let’s go ahead and install the T5 lamps.
When choosing your T5 bulbs, it is crucial to select a bulb that is capable of being dimmed on a daily basis. For that reason, we highly recommend using Giesemann T5 bulbs only. Not only do they produce optimal light coloration and PAR values, but they have also been formulated specifically to be dimmed on a regular basis without affecting it’s lifespan or spectrum.
Inserting the T-5 bulbs should only be performed with the light dismounted from over the aquarium and placed on a scratch free surface. Before inserting or replacing the bulbs make sure that the fixture is unplugged from the power source.
Remove one endplate of the fixture by loosening the screws with the included allen key.
Now, let’s remove the splash shields and the two-mirrored end covers.
The tubes and the contacts are to be pushed into the socket evenly, if necessary, exert a slight pressure in order to press the movable socket against the springs.
After inserted the tubes, rotate them 90° until they lock in.
Slide the splash shield back into the rail of the fixture and insert the mirrored end covers on each end of the fixture by bending them ever slightly.
Before we proceed to attach the end plate, test the fixture to ensure that all T5 bulbs have been correctly installed.
Attach the endplate.
After supplying power, the lamp will start automatically. A status LED in each power supply will light up indicating its operation status. Your Aurora is now ready for use.
Programming your Giesemann Aurora
Now that we have completed all hardware installation, you are probably wondering how to configure and run this awesome light. Well, we have put this Quick Guide together for you to facilitate the process and make it as seamless as possible.
The Aurora uses software to produce realistic sunrise-sunset effects, fully programmable day cycle light scenarios, cloud transitions and real-time moonlight simulations and other programing features you would expect from an elite light fixture.
For programming, a Windows PC, Mac or android mobile device with a Bluetooth interface is required but not included.
If you are using an Android device, you can search the Google Play store for Giesemann Aurora and download the application to your phone. For our video today, we will head over to coralvue.com and download the Mac version of the application.
Per Giesemann’s instructions, if you are using something other than an Android device, you must download, install and use the Futura software to operate the Aurora fixture.
Let’s go ahead and open the Futura program. Once opened, click on “Connect”. The application will automatically open your computer’s Bluetooth settings window and will search for available fixtures. This process may take a few seconds so please be patient.
Once you see the Aurora LED/T5 fixture listed, click on “Pair”. At this time, your computer will connect to your Aurora fixture.
Since this is your first time connecting your Aurora to your Bluetooth device, you will also be prompted for a passcode. The passcode is the last 8 digits of your Aurora’s serial number, which can be found on the side of your fixture.
Once you key in the passcode, your Aurora will be paired with your computer. You only need to key in the passcode once to connect to your fixture.
Now let’s go ahead and update the fixture’s clock. You do this by clicking on the “Info” button and then click on “Change” right next to the Time/Date field. Once the time has been updated, we can start programming.
The software allows you to program your fixture in two different modes. Manual and automatic. Manual means you set the intensity of each individual LED/T5 channel and it will run those intensities 24/7. Automatic means that you can create a 24-hour schedule for the fixture to run.
To manually configure the fixture to run the same intensity 24/7, click on “Color Mixer”. Here you can set the intensity of each individual channel.
Since we are using the Futura software to control the Aurora, channels 1 and 2 will control the two T5 channels and then channels 3, 4, and 5 will control the 5 different LED channels on the fixture.
You can control the intensity by just dragging the dot horizontally along the channel bar. As you make adjustments on the software, you will be able to see changes on the fixture in real-time.
Once you have achieved the color mix you were looking for, you can go ahead and close the app. Remember that the manual mode does not have any type of scheduling. Whatever you set the lights to be, that is how the fixture will remain 24/7.
Now most of us do not want our lights to be on 24/7. We usually like to have some type of schedule with dusk and dawn. So lets say we want our lights to turn on at 8 am and slowly ramp up and reach 100% intensity at 12 noon. Then remain at 100% and begin to ramp down around 6 p.m. until they completely turn off at 8 p.m.
Fortunately for us, Giesemann makes this very easy and intuitive. To create our schedule, click on “Daycycle”. Here you can create a completely new schedule of lights with different intensities for each channel during the day or, better yet, take one of the two preset schedules that Giesemann has created for us and either keep them as they are or use them as a starting point and adjust them to fit our needs.
To load the presets, you can just click on either “Default 1” or “Default 2”. If you are happy with either preset as they are, then just select the preset you like and then click on “Transport”. This will tell the software to send the preset information to the fixture for storage and execution. Your Aurora will now follow the schedule set by the preset you selected.
If you are like me, the preset is a great starting point but does not fit exactly what I am looking for. In this case, we can just easily change the preset to fit our needs. All we need to do is tap and drag on the different points on the graph and move our channel to higher or lower intensity. We can do this for each of the 5 different channels.
To access the different channels, you just need to click on “White/Red” and then select the channel you wish to modify. Remember that since we are using the Futura software, the first two channels will control our T5s and the remaining 3 channels will control the LED light channels.
Once you have selected the channel from the drop down box, you can then just tap on the graph points to move them up or down. If you need to add more points to create a more rounded curve, you can just double tap on the spot and a new dot will appear. Then you can move the spot around to make your adjustments. If you want to delete a point on the graph, all you have to do is double click on the dot itself and it will be immediately removed.
You repeat the process for every channel until you have achieved the lighting schedule of your liking. When complete, you can just click on the “Transport” button to send the schedule to the fixture’s internal memory for execution. Once the program has been uploaded to the fixture, there is no need to keep a permanent connection with your Mac. The fixture will run the schedule as planned. You only need to connect to the fixture if you wish to modify the lighting schedule.
Since the fixture keeps a copy of the schedule in it’s memory, if you wish to modify the schedule later on, you first need to call the schedule from the fixture and into your software. This helps you not have to create your lighting schedule from scratch or modify a preset every single time. To sync your computer or android schedule with the Aurora one, just click on “Call Up Data”.
This will pull the running schedule from the fixture and display it on your computer. Then you can modify or tweak it and then “Transport” it back into the fixture.
In addition to a robust and easy to use scheduling interface, the aurora also is capable of simulating cloud cover as well as lighting. To include these features into your fixture, click on “Weather”. Now you can select how long a cloud cover will last, how many cloud covers per day you want to program as well as the intensity of each cloud covering.
Today we will program the cloud covering to last 20 seconds, then I will select 12 clouds per day so I am getting at least one cloud covering per hour and I am going to set the light intensity to 50% which means that the fixture will dim to ½ the channels intensity during my cloud covering.
You can preview your settings by clicking on “Start Cloud”. Once you are satisfied with your settings, be sure to check “Cloud Simulation” to enable it.
You can also setup lighting during the day. This feature will cause the light fixture to flicker.
Once you have setup your Cloud and Lighting Simulation, click on “Apply” to save the information on the Aurora’s internal memory.
Another great feature of the Aurora is its ability to simulate the phases of the moon.
To set the moon lights, click on the “Moon Cycle” button. Here you can set the maximum intensity of the LED lights at full moon as well as let you select the exact age of the moon on the current cycle for those of you that would like to mimic a particular region of the world.
To change the moon intensity, just slide the Moon Intensity bar left or right. You will see the yellow line on the chart go up and down as you make your adjustments. To select the age of the moon cycle, slide the “Lunar Cycle” bar left or right. As you do that, the green vertical line will move left or right to show the current day of the cycle. Days 0 and 27 would be considered New Moon and day 14 would be considered full moon.
If you want to find the age of the moon in your local area, head over to www.moongiant.com and click on “Today’s Moon Phase”. Scroll down to the “Phase Details” section and look for “Moon Age”.
Before you hit the “Transport” button to save the moon cycle of the fixture, be sure to set your Time frame. Since my light schedule is set from 8 am to 8 pm, my moon cycle will be set to go from 8 pm to 8 am the next morning.
Now you can go ahead and click on the “Transport” button to save the information to your fixture’s internal memory.
We hope this tutorial was helpful in simplifying the Aurora Fixture installation. Today, the combination of LEDs and T5s is considered the holy grail of aquarium lighting and the Giesemann Aurora LED/T5 Hybrid fixture lives up to every single expectation!
If you would like to learn more about the Giesemann Aurora LED/T5 Hybrid Fixture including detailed specs and beautiful high quality pictures, head on over to Coralvue.com.
If you have any questions or issues with the product, don’t hesitate to visit our support portal at coralvue.com/support. Our friendly support reps are eager to help you with any questions or issues you may have.
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