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Iron Oxide to Mitigate Hydrogen Sulfide Gas Release from Gypsum-Bedded Dairy Manure Storages

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

Citation:  Transactions of the ASABE. 61(3): 1101-1112. (doi: 10.13031/trans.12665) @2018
Authors:   Long Chen, Michael L. Hile, Eileen E. Fabian, Zhanxiong Xu, Mary Ann Bruns, Vance Brown
Keywords:   Additive, Dairy, Gas, Gypsum bedding, Hydrogen sulfide, Iron oxide, Manure, Safety, Storage.

Abstract. To mitigate noxious hydrogen sulfide (H2S) gas release that has been observed from gypsum-laden dairy manure, three additives were studied in sequential investigations. Three trials with specific aims were conducted using experimental vessels containing 15 kg of dairy manure each. Trial 1 investigated two additives: iron oxide (specifically, iron oxide-hydroxide, FeOOH) and a proprietary gypsum-lime based product (DriMatt). Trial 2 investigated effective ratios of gypsum to iron oxide and a modified DriMatt additive, and trial 3 evaluated iron oxide at the most effective ratio. Manure agitation events were monitored in the first two trials, while gas releases were continuously monitored in trial 3 during and between agitations. Hydrogen sulfide concentrations were captured using electrochemical sensors or a Fourier transfer infrared (FTIR) gas analyzer assembly over an incubation period of two months for the first two trials and over 40 days for the third trial. Additionally, nutrient analyses were performed for each trial. Extremely high concentrations of H2S were observed during most manure agitation events (500 to 8000 ppm), while minimum releases (<10 ppm) were found when samples were static. Means of maximum concentrations of H2S were compared among treatments in each trial. Statistical tests showed that adding iron oxide to gypsum-laden manure reduced H2S production by an average of 94% compared to treatments without iron oxide. With a 1:1 molar ratio of iron oxide to gypsum, the level of H2S released was diminished to as low as the control manure (without gypsum). Therefore, iron oxide is a promising additive to mitigate H2S production in gypsum-laden dairy manure during agitation events.

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