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Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Transactions of the ASAE. VOL. 42(4): 1087-1094 . (doi: 10.13031/2013.13256) @1999
Authors:   J. R. Bicudo, L. M. Safley Jr., P. W. Westerman
Keywords:   Lagoons, Anaerobic, Swine, Sludge, Nitrogen, Phosphorus

Fifteen single-stage anaerobic lagoons representing four types of swine production farms (farrow-to-feeder, crossing, farrow-to-finish, and finish) were monitored during two years to evaluate performance. Lagoon liquid and sludge were characterized for all sites. Lagoon loading rates, percent of lagoon volume occupied by sludge, sludge accumulation and age of lagoon at the time of evaluation were determined. The mean annual lagoon liquid Total Kjeldahl Nitrogen (TKN) increased with increase in average daily live animal weight per cubic meter (LAW/m3) of lagoon volume, and the rate of increase depended upon the type of production farm. The monthly supernatant TKN concentration varied as much as 50% over two years for the same lagoon, generally showing a cyclic pattern with highest concentration in mid-summer. Of the nutrient mass contained in the lagoon, about 30% of TKN and more than 90% of Total Phosphorus (Total-P) and volatile solids (VS) were contained in the sludge. The accumulation of TKN and Total-P in the sludge increased linearly with time. Sludge accumulation was found to be impacted both by age of lagoon and loading rate. Based on total sludge accumulated and the age of lagoon, it was determined that sludge accumulated at an approximate rate of 0.003 m3/yr per kg of LAW. This is higher accumulation rate than reported from a study in Missouri, but lower than reported by a study in South Carolina. It is approximately 25% of the value predicted by ASAE Engineering Practice EP 403.2 and ASAE DATA D384.1. Additional data is needed on sludge accumulation rates in swine lagoons and characterization of sludge, especially considering likely changes in swine nutrition to improve nutrient utilization and reduce nitrogen and phosphorus excretion.

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