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Thermal Environment Evaluation of a Novel Positive Pressure Filtered Ventilation System in a Swine Breeding-Gestation Barn

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

Citation:  10th International Livestock Environment Symposium (ILES X)  .(doi:10.13031/iles.18-033)
Authors:   Benjamin C. Smith, Blake J. Fonken, John P. Stinn, Steven J. Hoff, Jay D. Harmon
Keywords:   Environmental control, positive pressure, swine, thermal environment, ventilation

Abstract. The thermal environment (TE) inside swine buildings not only has an impact on the productivity and well-being of the animals, but the energy usage of the building as well. As the swine industry has grown and evolved to address disease pressures faced by many producers, a novel positive pressure ventilation with filtration system has been employed on relatively large footprint 3,000-head breeding-gestation barns. Such buildings present complex challenges of controlling an independent fan system based on attic static pressure alone, inlet zones on building temperature, and variable opening exhausts on building temperature and building static pressure. The objectives of this study were 1) to evaluate the Thermal Environment Modification System and Air Distribution System (TEMADS) controller response, 2) evaluate the spatial uniformity within quadrants of a barn and 3) evaluate the Temperature Humidity Index (THI) at strategic points within a building. For this study 53 combination dry-bulb temperature and relative humidity sensors and dry-bulb temperature only sensors were installed in two breeding-gestation buildings. A set-point uniformity coefficient was used to evaluate the TEMADS controller performance. The highest coefficient was seen when ambient temperature was below 0oC, and neither barn was capable of reaching the ideal uniformity coefficient of 0.80. The spatial uniformity in each barn showed a higher uniformity across the pen rows (west to east) with the highest uniformity in the pen rows closest to the fans. During an extended period of heat stress conditions, the TEMADS was unable to reduce the THI below alert levels, and once the ambient THI dropped below the alert level, the barn conditions lagged considerably. The results from this study show that the TEMADS was most successful when ambient temperature was below the set-point, as expected, and while not as capable at maintaining the set-point temperature, the temperature achieved was nearly uniform throughout the barn.

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