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NY D85520

December 17, 1998

CLA-2-84:RR:NC:1:102 D85520


TARIFF NO.:8481.80.5090

Mr. Kevin Young-Kong
520 West 43rd Street (#2N)
New York, New York 10036

RE: The tariff classification of a carbon dioxide system for aquariums from Germany

Dear Mr. Young-Kong:

In your letter dated November 24, 1998 you requested a tariff classification ruling. Descriptive literature was submitted.

The item in question is described as a carbon dioxide system for aquariums. The system consists of a carbon dioxide tank, a pressure regulator with gauges and needle metering valve, carbon dioxide-proof tubing, a pH controller, a solenoid valve, a check valve, a bubble counter, a plastic carbon dioxide diffuser with a hand operated control tap, and an optional bio-filter station. The function of the system is to introduce carbon dioxide into the aquarium to promote the growth of aquatic plants.

In operation carbon dioxide under pressure flows through the tubing from the tank through the pressure regulator, through the solenoid valve, through the check valve and into the diffuser, which is submerged in the aquarium. Carbon dioxide is introduced as the gas bubbles through the aquarium water entering the diffuser. The diffuser functions as a mixing valve, with the hand operated control tap regulating the flow of water into the diffuser.

The pH controller monitors the acidity of the aquarium and is electrically connected to the solenoid valve. The solenoid valve is a stop valve which shuts off the flow of carbon dioxide when the pH controller determines that the gas has raised the acidity of the aquarium to an unacceptable level. The check valve simply prevents backflow of aquarium water into the gas supply line. The bubble counter provides a means to determine the volume of gas introduced. The optional bio-filter station integrates filtration of the aquarium water with the carbon dioxide system.

The carbon dioxide system is a composite good consisting of several individual components. Composite goods are classified as if they consisted of the component which gives them their essential character. We find that the carbon dioxide diffuser, which is the one component specially designed to introduce carbon dioxide to a regulated flow of aquarium water, is the component which imparts essential character.

The applicable subheading for the carbon dioxide system will be 8481.80.5090, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for hand operated valves, of other materials. The current rate of duty will be 3.3 percent ad valorem. Effective January 1, 1999 the rate of duty will be 3 percent ad valorem.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 CFR 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Kenneth T. Brock at 212-466-5493.


Robert B. Swierupski

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