Egg Industry - April 2018 - 8
8 ❙ EggIndustry
AIR QUALITY CHALLENGES
Hens that are wetted by the water used to control dust in the litter area are shown to be cooler 30 seconds
after spraying. Egg Industry Center, Iowa State University
industry for many years. Sodium chloride is dissolved in tap
water and subjected to an electrical charge. The dose of sodium chloride and duration of electrolysis in the reactor can
be controlled to produce slightly acidic water with different
concentrations of free chlorine. In the laboratory trials, Dr.
Chai reports that "we have seen significant reduction in
particulate matter and bacteria in the air and litter without
causing increased ammonia levels."
Helping control airborne bacteria is an especially important benefit that is not offered by some other control
methods. The free chlorine is responsible for that antibacterial effect. Impact of the free chlorine is determined
by the length of time the water is aerosolized.
Electrolyzed water is applied via a spray nozzle system that is suspended above litter aisles of the house and
reaches most of the open litter area in the field trial house
design. Based on the laboratory experiment results, the
field trial is being conducted with a spray volume of 125
milliliters per square meter (approximately 4 fluid ounces
per 10 square feet) corresponding to 1 centimeter (0.4
inch) litter depth. The application amount may be adjusted
as litter accumulation on the floor changes. It is estimated
that combined initial investment and operating costs are
from US$.04 to US$.05 per bird per year.
The spray system is also able to be used as a tool to
cool birds during hot weather. As water evaporates from
the wetted birds, it removes body heat and hence, lowers
body temperatures. This also means that in cold weather
birds will experience a similar short-term cooling affect
when the spray is used to control dust.
Balance between dust and ammonia
The trick in managing litter is to keep it dry enough to
prevent bacteria from breaking down the uric acid in the
manure into ammonia, without the litter being so dry that
bird activity in the litter creates airborne dust.
Litter amendments have also been used in combination with the electrolyzed water project or independently
to reduce litter pH. The gaseous release of ammonia can
be reduced as a lower litter pH (below 7) converts ammonia into ammonium.
There are many types of litter amendments available
www.WATTAgNet.com ❙ April 2018