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Electrostatic Space Charge Systems for Dust Reduction in Animal Housing

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

Citation:  2007 ASAE Annual Meeting  074176.(doi:10.13031/2013.23274)
Authors:   Bailey W Mitchell, John W Baumgartner
Keywords:   dust reduction, pathogen reduction, electrostatic, poultry, air quality, emissions, health

Airborne dust in animal housing and in the emissions from animal housing is known to be a contributing factor affecting animal and human health in and downstream of these areas. A unique Electrostatic Space Charge System (ESCS) developed in the late 1990s has been shown to be effective for reducing dust in a variety of poultry areas. The patented system uses high-voltage sharp-pointed electrodes in close proximity to a ground plane to produce very high static charges on airborne dust which is then attracted to litter or grounded surfaces of a structure. Effectiveness of the ESCS for dust reduction has ranged from 78% in commercial poultry hatchers to 47% in the manure pit of a commercial caged-layer house. In a broiler-breeder house application where the dust level was high, the ESCS also reduced ammonia by 60%. In experimental caged-layer rooms the ESCS has reduced airborne Salmonella by 95%. Following recent extensive field testing, the ESCS was approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as an effective intervention tool for reducing dust emissions in selected large commercial caged-layer houses. The ESCS -- initially developed for experimental applications, has been used extensively in a research lab setting as well as in commercial tests, and it has been commercially available since 2005. By installing the system inside the house, it has been shown to improve air quality inside the house for animals and workers as well as to reduce emissions from the house. All of the applications have potential for improving human health as well as animal health.

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