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Thermal conditions in A piglet nest covered in different ways

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

Citation:   No Citation available.
Authors:   H.M. Houszka, J. S. Strøm, S. Morsing
Keywords:   Piglet nest, Cover configurations, Air temperature, Black globe temperature

In farrowing houses, higher temperatures are needed more for the piglets than for the sow. One of the methods frequently used to achieve this is to maintain a low room air temperature and provide protection of the piglets by covering the nest area in different ways. Only limited information is found in literature on the specific thermal consequences of different nest cover designs, however. A series of experiments was conducted with a 0.6 m by 1.0 m nest area surrounded by 10 different cover combinations. The experiments contained three groups of nest designs: “only roof” over the nest area, “only walls” around the nest area, and finally, combinations of “roof and walls”. The roof and walls were made of 10 mm insulated panels. The nest was placed in a draft free room, where the air temperature was maintained at 21 °C, and heated with 140 W electric floor panel with dimensions equal to the nest floor area. Air temperatures and black globe temperatures were measured in 9 positions in the nest. Floor panel surface temperature was recorded with an infrared imaging camera. The increase in air temperature in the nest relative to the surrounding room air (the air temperature lift) was in general surprisingly small. The use of “roof only” or “walls only” resulted in an average air temperature lift of less than 2°C. With “roof and walls” in combination with open access front, a slightly higher temperature lift of the order of 3°C was achieved. A supplementary protection of the entrance to the nest by use of a front plate or a curtain gave an air temperature lift of 4 - 8°C. For most cover designs the black globe temperature lift was approximately 2 °C higher than the air temperature lift. The highest black globe temperature lift of 10°C was observed for the nest covered with walls, roof and front curtain. (Download PDF)    (Export to EndNotes)