Can Mass Balance Be Trusted in Estimating N Loss for Meat-Poultry Housing?

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2009-06-01
Authors
Li, Hong
Burns, Robert
Jacobson, Larry
Noll, Sally
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Xin, Hongwei
Distinguished Professor Emeritus
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Harmon, Jay
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Koziel, Jacek
Professor Emeritus
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Hoff, Steven
Professor Emeritus
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Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Since 1905, the Department of Agricultural Engineering, now the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE), has been a leader in providing engineering solutions to agricultural problems in the United States and the world. The department’s original mission was to mechanize agriculture. That mission has evolved to encompass a global view of the entire food production system–the wise management of natural resources in the production, processing, storage, handling, and use of food fiber and other biological products.

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In 1905 Agricultural Engineering was recognized as a subdivision of the Department of Agronomy, and in 1907 it was recognized as a unique department. It was renamed the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering in 1990. The department merged with the Department of Industrial Education and Technology in 2004.

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1905–present

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  • Department of Agricultural Engineering (1907–1990)

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Abstract

Quantification of ammonia loss from animal feeding operations by measuring gaseous concentration and air exchange through the emitting source is not always practical, e.g., under natural ventilation conditions. Mass balance over an extended period of time may offer possibilities of remedy. This study compares two NH3-N emission estimate approaches for a commercial turkey grow-out house over one year period: a) a concentration-flow-integration (CFI) method (considered as the reference method), and b) a nitrogen (N) mass-balance method. The CFI NH3-N emission was determined by continuously measuring the NH3 concentration and exhaust air flow rate through the turkey house with a state-of-the-art mobile air emission unit. The mass-balance N emission was calculated by balancing the total N inputs (new bedding, young birds, feed) and N output (litter cake removed between flocks, litter removed at cleanout, amount of marketed birds, mortality, and body N content). The production-related data were acquired from the records kept or presented to the cooperative producer. The results revealed unexpectedly large discrepancy in NH3-N loss between the two methods. The outcome of this study cast serious doubt about the adequacy of using mass balance for estimating NH3 emissions from a dynamic production system such as turkey houses.

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This is an ASABE Meeting Presentation, Paper No. 096323.

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Thu Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2009