Carbon Markets for Livestock Operations: Manure Treatment and Handling

The first in a series of 3 webinars, this presentation introduces the fundamentals of carbon emissions, as well as technologies, practices and market opportunities available to agricultural producers are critical to that transition on the livestock operation. This presentation was originally broadcast on November 18, 2022. Continue reading “Carbon Markets for Livestock Operations: Manure Treatment and Handling”

Impact of Swine Sludge Inclusion Rate on the Composting Process and Compost Quality

Purpose

The purpose of this study was to develop and analyze potential recipes for composting swine lagoon sludge. Composting is a simple treatment; it is widely adopted on farms, generates a stable value-added stackable product, and conserves organic matter and nutrients. All these benefits along with an affordable cost and lower environmental emissions make it a potential candidate for the management of lagoon sludge, a byproduct of swine operations in southeast US.

Sludge accumulation in lagoons can result in increased odor from lagoons, impact animal productivity, increase risk of environmental and social consequences and lead to operation non-compliance. Developing affordable sludge management alternatives is important because current practices (land application post dredging and dewatering using organic polymers and geo-bags) are not widely adoptable, cost-prohibitive and non-sustainable (Owusu-Twum and Sharara, 2020, Soil facts) and current farm nutrient management plans do not consider management of sludge nutrients.

What Did We Do?

We developed two recipes by mixing different sludge amounts with locally available low-cost amendments: poultry litter, Bermuda hay, yard debris and lagoon liquid. We composted these recipes in triplicates using 13-cubic feet in-vessel composters and recorded changes in temperatures, weight loss, volume, moisture, and organic matter. We also recorded greenhouse gases emitted from the piles at regular intervals. Forced, intermittent aeration was maintained during composting for replicates to ensure adequate oxygen supply and avoid prematurely drying mixtures. Finally, we analyzed the final compost to determine its suitability as a soil amendment.

We used the observations from the experiments to evaluate if proposed recipes resulted in successful compost and determine whether sludge inclusion significantly impacts composting process and product quality. We also analyzed which factors influence weight and organic matter losses in the piles and if the proposed recipes have comparable cumulative GHG and NH3 emissions to previous observations.

What Have We Learned?

We learned that sludge can be composted at both 10% and 20% inclusion rates using the above ingredients, as the process met time and temperatures for pathogen reduction (15A NCAC, 13B.1406) and the final product were stable (TMECC, US Composting council). For 100 lbs. of an initial wet mixture (60.8 to 61.4% moisture) both recipes experienced a total weight loss of 33.8-35.2 lbs. with 24.5 to 25.4 lbs. being lost as moisture and 8.8 to 9.7 lbs. lost as organic matter during the active phase of composting (31 days). Post-screening the recipes resulted in 42.3 to 48.6 lbs. of the stable final product (45 to 47% moisture) that can be directly land applied.

We learned that the composting process generated similar GHG, and ammonia emissions as reported in the previous studies however, most of the methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) were generated in the later stages of composting, which can be potentially reduced by proper management of the composting process. Another observation was larger losses in ammonia in the earlier stages of composting which on reduction; using certain additives, changes in recipe or management practices, can result in optimal utilization of nitrogen, increase product value, and reduce environmental impacts.

Future Plans

We plan to further analyze the impact of the composting process on total nutrients and water-extractable fractions, this will provide information on land use rate and potential losses in runoffs. This information is critical for swine lagoon sludge-derived products due to the high concentration of P, Zn, and Cu in sludge as losses can lead to eutrophication in surface and marine waters and potential toxicity in soils.

Future work proposed also involves techno-economic evaluation of this process to determine the cost of treatment, and fair price of the final product. We also plan to conduct a cradle to gate life cycle assessment of the process to determine global warming potential, eutrophication, acidification, and particulate matter generation for farm and large-scale systems. These efforts will help guide further research to improve the technology and provide knowledge to stakeholders and producers on alternative sludge management options.

Figure 1. Swine lagoon sludge composting process and products.

 

References

Authors

Piyush Patil, Ph.D. Candidate, Bio&Ag. Engineering, North Carolina State University

Corresponding author

Mahmoud Sharara, Asst. Professor and Extension Specialist, Bio&Ag. Eng. North Carolina State University

Corresponding author email address

msharar@ncsu.edu

Additional authors

Stephanie Kulesza, Assistant Professor, Crop & Soil Sciences, North Carolina State University

Sanjay Shah, Professor and Extension specialist, Bio&Ag. Eng. North Carolina State University

John Classen, Associate Professor, Bio&Ag. Eng. North Carolina State University

Additional Information

Publication is in progress currently so best resource is the corresponding author.

Acknowledgements

We would like to acknowledge the support from Joseph Stuckey and Chris Hopkins (Poultry, livestock, and animal waste management facility, NCSU).

Funding sources

Bioenergy Research Initiative (BRI) – Contract No #17-072-4015, North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services

National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) – Critical Agricultural Research and Extension (CARE) – Award No. 2019-68008-29894, U.S. Department of Agriculture

 

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2022. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth. Oregon, OH. April 18-22, 2022. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Exploring the Effect of a Peptide Additive on Struvite Formation and Morphology: a High-Throughput Method

Purpose

Precipitation of struvite (MgNH4PO4·6H2O), a slow-release fertilizer, provides a means of recycling phosphorus from wastewater streams. In this work, a method for high-throughput struvite precipitation is developed to investigate the effects of a peptide additive.

What Did We Do?

The reactions occurred in small volumes (300 μL or less of magnesium, ammonium, and phosphate solutions) in a 96-well plate for 45 minutes. The formation of struvite was monitored by fitting absorbance at 600 nm over time to a first-order model with induction time. The impact of struvite seed dosing was also investigated, highlighting the importance of optimization when peptide is present. The composition of the precipitate was confirmed through Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, while morphology and crystal size were analyzed through optical microscopy. Finally, the utility of the high-throughput platform was demonstrated with a 25 full factorial design to capture the effects and interactions of: magnesium dose, mixing time, seed dose, pH, and temperature.

What Have We Learned?

The addition of peptide induced significant changes to the yield parameter and formation constant in the model. Crystals grown in the presence of peptide were morphologically different, having a higher aspect ratio than crystals grown in the absence of peptide. Controlling the shape of the crystal may impact the dissolution properties of struvite.

Future Plans

We anticipate that the general technique investigated can be applied to more complex water matrices (e.g. wastewater), with purity investigated spectroscopically or through other high-throughput assays. Future work will focus on identifying the mechanism by which the peptide acts. The use of a sequence-defined peptide paves the way for further developments in favorably modifying struvite formation and growth. With the effects of shADP5 documented, other similar peptides can be explored via either computational simulations or experimentation to modulate the quality and yield of struvite – potentially increasing its value as a fertilizer. Further computational studies also need to be explored to elucidate the exact mechanism by which shADP5 modulates the thermodynamics of struvite crystallization.

Authors

Presenting author

Jacob D Hostert, PhD candidate, Case Western Reserve University

Corresponding author

Julie N. Renner, Assistant professor, Case Western Reserve University

Corresponding author email address

Jxr484@case.edu

Additional authors

Olivia Kamlet, undergraduate, Case Western Reserve University

Zihang Su, Postdoctoral scholar, Columbia University

Naomi S. Kane, B.S., Case Western Reserve University

Additional Information

Hostert, J. D.; Kamlet, O.; Su, Z. H.; Kane, N. S.; Renner, J. N. Exploring the effect of a peptide additive on struvite formation and morphology: a high-throughput method. RSC Advances 2020, 10 (64), 39328-39337, Article. DOI: 10.1039/d0ra06637k.

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the United States Department of Agriculture (Award No. 2018-68011-28691) and the National Science Foundation (Award No. 1739473).

 

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2022. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth. Oregon, OH. April 18-22, 2022. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Dairy Anaerobic Digestion Simulation Software

Purpose

Co-digestion of organic material with dairy manure represents an opportunity to provide both a revenue stream to anaerobic digester operations, through the collection of a tipping fee and/or increased biogas/electricity production, as well as a means for waste generators to dispose of their product in a beneficial way.

However, there are many factors for an operator to consider when deciding on whether to accept organic waste.  A major consideration is the volume of biogas that the material will generate when co-digested.  This can be used both to assign a value to the waste through increased biogas production and/or electricity sales, as well as to size equipment for producing, treating and potentially selling/using the biogas.   Estimating the biogas produced is a complicated process, encompassing many different factors of digester design, waste characteristics, and environmental factors.

To assist in this estimation, we have developed software that allows a user to predict the biogas production from mixed wastes and dairy manure based on changing herd sizes, as well as providing the ability to vary the timing and volume of addition of multiple organic wastes, throughout the course of a simulated year.  With this user-friendly tool, we hope to enable producers to better explore the opportunities that co-digestion offers.

What Did We Do?

The originally developed Cornell Anaerobic Digester Simulations software allowed the user to input a herd size and to select how much (if any) of seven wastes would be co-digested with the dairy manure.  This rudimentary method of simulation assumed that the same volume/mass would be applied to the digester in a steady-state constant fashion for the entire year that the simulations were run for.  However, that is unlikely to be the case in a real-world production environment.

In the new version of the software, we have incorporated the characteristics of over 200 wastes into a user selectable interface.  Once a waste type is selected, the user has the option to select when the waste is placed into the digester, whether that be on an everyday, weekly, monthly or custom basis with the option to select to which months of the year the additions occur.  When selecting a weekly or monthly basis, the user can select which day(s) of the week or month wastes are added, and in the custom basis, the user can select which days of the year additions occur.

Once the timing of addition is completed, the user can select how much of the waste is applied during each addition.  Whether that be a constant volume for each addition, or a custom volume for each addition.

The data for the specific wastes includes the dry matter and organic matter content as well as the biogas and methane yields.  Based on the type of waste we have also assigned a “digestibility” curve to the particular waste which when assuming a first order kinetic model of gas production, can provide the production of gas a function of time.  The production of biogas from all added wastes and the added manure is then summed for each day of the year to provide an estimate of the biogas production, on a daily basis, that can be summarized with a minimum/maximum/average on a monthly and annual basis.

What Have We Learned?

During the process of developing the software, we examined a few different techniques for estimating the timing of biogas production from co-digested wastes.  There are more complicated models available such as Anaerobic Digestion Model #1 (ADM1), however many more parameters must be known/estimated for each waste type, (not to mention requiring a much more complicated user interface).  We felt that using a simplified first order kinetic model provides a good way to add the necessary complexity to model biogas production over time without overly complicated calculations.  The simplification allowed us to include a more complicated and yet more real world means of modeling the addition of wastes to a digester that wouldn’t be possible with more complicated digestion/biogas production models.

Future Plans

Currently, the Cornell Dairy Anaerobic Digestion Simulation Software is capable of predicting the amount of heat necessary to maintain digester temperatures, as well as the parasitic electrical load.  Future additions will include modeling the energy usage (and effects on biogas) of treatment processes to produce Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) from biogas.

We would also like to include the ability to track nutrients through the process of digestion.  Nutrient additions from the co-digestion of wastes also represent an important consideration for farm as they may or may not have the land base/crop requirements to use all of the imported nutrients.  The cost of treatment of the effluent from the digester to remove nutrients, or the shipment of effluent off site may have to be added into the determination of how much of a “tipping fee” a farmer would need to charge for taking an organic waste for co-digestion.

We hope to make the program freely available to the public to use.  Currently, the software is written in MATLAB which ordinarily requires a license to operate, however it is possible to create an executable standalone program that can be shared and run without the need to purchase MATLAB.

Authors

Timothy Shelford, Extension Associate, School of Integrated Plant Science, Cornell University

Corresponding author email address

tjs47@cornell.edu

Additional authors

Curt Gooch, Senior Extension Associate Emeritus, Department of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Cornell University

Peter Wright, Agricultural Engineer, Department of Animal Science, Cornell University

Lauren Ray, Agricultural Energy Systems Engineer, Cornell University

 

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2022. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth. Oregon, OH. April 18-22, 2022. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Characterization of Innovative Manure Treatment Components

Purpose

Improvements in manure treatment/nutrient management are an important need for dairy farms to move substantively towards sustainability. This project quantifies several individual manure treatment components and component assemblies targeted to address farm/environment needs. Project outcomes should help dairy farms to make better-informed decisions about manure/nutrient management systems.

Societal demand for farms to reduce their environmental impact is driving the need for improved and cost-effective manure/nutrient management options. Dairy farms may need advanced manure treatment systems to be economically, environmentally, and societally sustainable.

What Did We Do?

Specific treatments being evaluated include anaerobic digestion, active composting, sequencing batch reactors, solid-liquid separation systems including, screw press separation, dissolved air floatation, centrifuging, and solid treatment systems including bedding recovery units and pelletization. We are working with a farm that has an anaerobic digester and screw press separators. They have been planning to install a Dissolved Air Flotation (DAF) system. The farm was approached with an in-vessel composting technology “active composting” to determine if it could effectively convert portions of the digested separated liquid flow to a stabilized solid that could be pelletized and exported, while the liquids could be further treated to become dilute enough to be spray irrigated on a limited acreage.

What Have We Learned?

We learned that although the active composting process was able to quickly produce stabilized high solid content material from a variety of mixes of digested separated liquid and dried shavings, the energy needed ranged from $9 to $14 per cow per day. Through volume/time calculations, the pumping system from the reception pit to the digester and the post digestion pit to the separators varied although the % solids were consistent. Doppler flow meters purported to be able to measure manure did not give consistent volume results. Screw press solid liquid separation can result in a bedding product with relatively low moisture (60%) from anaerobically digested dairy manure.  Determining an optimum manure treatment system for dairy manure will be difficult given the variability from farm to farm.

Future Plans

Specific treatments yet to be evaluated include: anaerobic sequencing batch reactors, solid liquid separation systems including dissolved air floatation (DAF), centrifuging, and solid treatment systems including bedding recovery units (BRU) and pelletization. Covid supply chain issues and travel restrictions have slowed progress. The DAF system can be directly analyzed as it is installed on the dairy. A neighboring farm has a BRU that will be sampled and analyzed. Data from a centrifuge and pelletizer will be obtained from the literature. Putting the process in a treatment train will be explored on a spreadsheet.

Authors

Peter Wright, Agricultural Engineer, PRO-DAIRY, Cornell University

Corresponding author email address

pew2@cornell.edu

Additional authors

Lauren Ray, Environmental Energy Engineer, PRO-DAIRY, Cornell University
Curt Gooch, Emeritus Senior Extension Associate, Cornell University

Additional Information

We have completed several fact sheets including Manure Basics, Advanced Manure Treatment – Part 1:  Overview, Part 2:  Phosphorus recovery technologies, Part 3:  Nitrogen recovery technologies, and Part 4:  Energy extraction. These are available at: https://cals.cornell.edu/pro-dairy/our-expertise/environmental-systems/manure-management/manure-treatment

Publications: Peter Wright, Karl Czymmek, and Tim Terry “Food waste coming to your farm? Consider where the nutrients go and manure processing for nutrient export” PRO-DAIRY The Manager, contained in Progressive Dairy Vol. 35 No. 5 March 12, 2021

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by a joint research and extension program funded by the Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station (Hatch funds) and Cornell Cooperative Extension (Smith Lever funds) received from the National Institutes for Food and Agriculture (NIFA,) U.S. Department of Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  New York State Pollution Prevention Institute (NYSP2I) at the Golisano Institute for Sustainability (GIS) paid for the sampling that was funded by a grant to RIT from by the Environmental Protection Fund as administered by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation.

 

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2022. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth. Oregon, OH. April 18-22, 2022. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

An Update on Litter Amendments and Ammonia Scrubbers for Reducing Ammonia Emissions and Phosphorus Runoff from Poultry Litter

Purpose

The objectives of the litter amendment research were to determine why alum applications to poultry litter occasionally fail to reduce soluble phosphorus (P) and to determine if aluminum-, calcium- or iron- based nanoparticles would reduce soluble P in litter when applied alone or in combination with conventional litter treatments used for ammonia control, such as alum and/or sodium bisulfate.

The objective of the scrubber research was to design a scrubber that reduces ammonia, dust, and pathogens in the air inside of animal rearing facilities, like broiler houses, rather than the air being exhausted from the facilities. Currently scrubbers are “end of pipe” technology, which purify the exhaust air, so the only economic benefit is the capture of nitrogen, which is relatively inexpensive. Reducing the ammonia, dust, and pathogens in the air inside poultry houses should result in production benefits, such as those found with litter amendments (improved weight gains, better feed conversion, lower susceptibility to disease, and reduced propane use).

What Did We Do?

A series of laboratory studies were conducted with various litter amendments.  The first study was conducted using litter from a commercial broiler house that had been treated with sodium bisulfate ten times over a two year period.  Poultry litter (20 grams) was weighed out into 6 centrifuge tubes and half of the litter samples were treated with alum at a rate of 5% by weight.  The tubes were incubated in the dark for one week, then extracted with 200 ml deionized water for one hour, centrifuged for 15 minutes at 8,000 rpm, filtered through 0.45 um filter paper and analyzed for soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP) using the Murphy-Riley method on an autoanalyzer.

The next four lab studies used the same basic incubation studies, although the litter that was used came from a pen trial we had conducted where we knew the litter had never been treated with sodium bisulfate.  Eighty six different treatment combinations involving conventional ammonia control treatments, such as alum and sodium bisulfate with or without the addition of different types of nanoparticles were used.  The nanoparticles used in this study were: (1) Al-nano – an aluminum based nanoparticle, (2) Fe-nano – an iron based nanoparticle, (3) MNP – a nanoparticle made of both aluminum and iron, and (4) TPX – a calcium silicate based nanoparticle made by N-Clear, Inc.  The sodium bisulfate that was utilized is sold under the tradename PLT (Poultry Litter Treatment) by Jones-Hamilton, Inc.

We also redesigned the ARS Air Scrubber so that it is scrubbing the air inside poultry houses rather than the exhaust air.  The critical design feature to allow this was the use of fast sand filters to remove all particulates from the water and acid used to scrub dust and ammonia, respectively.

What Have We Learned?

We found that alum failed to lower soluble P in poultry litter when the litter had been treated with sodium bisulfate, probably due to the formation of sodium alunite [NaAl3(OH)6(SO4)2], a mineral often found in acid soils where sulfate applications have occurred. The formation of this mineral likely inactivates the Al with respect to P adsorption or precipitation reactions.

We also found that a Ca-based nanoparticle (TPX) was very effective in reducing soluble P in litter, either when applied in combination with alum or sodium bisulfate.  Surprisingly, when TPX was applied with sodium bisulfate at very low levels, the soluble P levels of sodium bisulfate-treated litter decreased from 3,410 mg P/kg (when added alone) to 1,220, 541, and 233 mg P/kg litter, respectively, when 0.25, 0.5, and 1% TPX was added with sodium bisulfate.

Future Plans

We are currently conducting a large pen trial to determine the effect of TPX nanoparticles applied with alum or sodium bisulfate on ammonia emissions, soluble P, and P runoff from small plots using rainfall simulators.

We are also building a full-scale prototype of the indoor ammonia scrubber so that we can begin to test the efficacy of this scrubber.

Author

Philip A. Moore, Jr., Soil Scientist, USDA/ARS, Fayetteville, AR

Philip.Moore@USDA.Gov

Additional Information

Moore, P.A., Jr. 2021. Composition and method for reducing ammonia and soluble phosphorus in runoff and leaching from animal manure. U.S. Patent Application No. 17/171,204. Patent pending.

Moore, P.A., Jr. 2022. A system for removing ammonia, dust and pathogens from air within an animal rearing/sheltering facility. U.S. Patent Application No. 17/715,666.  Patent pending.

 

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2022. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth. Oregon, OH. April 18-22, 2022. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

The MAnure PHosphorus EXtraction (MAPHEX) System for Removing Phosphorus, Odor, Microbes, and Alkalinity from Dairy and Swine Manures

Abstract

Animal manures contain nutrients [primarily nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P)] and organic material that are beneficial to crops. Unfortunately, for economic and logistics reasons, liquid dairy and swine manure tends to be applied to soils near where it is generated. Over time, P concentrations in soils where dairy manure is applied builds up, often in excess of crop demands. We previously (Church et al., 2016, 2017) and have subsequently built, a full-scale version of a MAnure PHosphorus EXtraction (MAPHEX) System capable of removing greater than 90 percent of the P from manures. While originally designed to remove phosphorus, we have also shown that the MAPHEX System was also capable of removing odor and microbes, and of concentrating alkalinity into a solid, economically transported form. We have also lowered daily operating costs by testing the effect of lower-cost chemicals as alternatives to ferric sulfate, and by showing that the diatomaceous earth (DE) filtering material can be recycled and reused. We are currently building a system capable of treating over 100,000 gallons of Dairy Manure per day. This system is planned to be operational for demonstrating starting summer 2022.

Purpose

Swine and dairy manures are typically in slurry form and contain nutrients [primarily nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P)] and organic material that are beneficial to crops. Unfortunately, the concentrations of nutrients in both manures are too low to make transportation of bulk manures over large distances economically viable. Furthermore, since it must be transported in tanks, that transportation is inconvenient as well. Therefore, these manures tend to be applied to soils near where they are generated, and, over time, P concentrations in soils increase to the point that soil P concentrations are often in excess of crop demands. Furthermore, because of the implication that P runoff from agricultural operations plays an important role in eutrophication of streams and other water bodies, farmers are experiencing increasing pressures and regulation to not apply animal manures to those soils.

We previously reported on an invention that 1) is designed to be a solution to the P overloading that happens when unnecessary P is added to agricultural soils, 2) is scalable such that it can be used as a mobile system, and 3) has shown to be capable of removing greater than 90 percent of the P from a wide range of dairy manures, while retaining greater than 90% of the N in the final effluent for beneficial use by the farmer.

What Did We Do?

We subsequently built a full-scale version of a MAnure PHosphorus EXtraction (MAPHEX) System capable of removing greater than 90 percent of the P from manures and have tested it on dairy manures. We also focused our efforts on lowering the daily operating costs of the system by developing a method to recover and reuse the diatomaceous earth used in the final filtration step, and testing alternative, lower cost chemicals that can be used in the chemical treatment step. We also performed pilot-scale tests on swine manures.

What Have We Learned?

The full-scale MAPHEX System removed greater than 90% of P from a wide variety of dairy manures, while leaving greater than 90% of the N in the final effluent to be used beneficially to fertigate crops. The System was also shown to recover and concentrate alkalinity into a solid form on a farm that used greater amounts of lime during manure handling, remove 50% of the odor from dairy manure and to remove greater than 80% of Total coliforms and E. Coli. Furthermore, the System has not shown to alter the pH of the final effluent respective to raw manures as other treatment technologies can. We have lowered daily operating costs by testing the effect of lower-cost chemicals as alternatives to ferric sulfate, and by showing that the diatomaceous earth (DE) filtering material can be recycled and reused.

In pilot-scale swine testing, we found that the MAPHEX System can remove greater than 96% of the phosphorus in swine manures. This essentially P free effluent can be beneficially used for fertigation without further loading the receiving soils with P. Scaling up the pilot-scale testing has the potential to reduce swine manure storage volumes to allow for mitigation of overflow problems during large storms. Furthermore, the pilot-scale study suggests that capital equipment costs and treatment costs for swine manure would be lower than for treating dairy manure.

Future Plans

We are currently building a simplified version of the MAPHEX System that will be capable of treating over 100,000 gallons of dairy manure per day. This system is planned to be operational for demonstrating starting summer 2022. We plan to use this simplified version for demonstration tests, and use the results obtained to model the effects of using MAPHEX technology compared to conventional manure handling practices on two paired watersheds. We also plan to demonstrate the full-scale system on a wide range of swine manures with on-farm testing.

Author

Clinton D. Church, Research Chemist, USDA-ARS University Park, PA

Corresponding author email address

Cdchurch.h2o@netzero.com

Additional Information

Church, C. D., Hristov, A. N., Bryant, R. B., Kleinman, P. J. A., & Fishel, S. K. (2016). A novel treatment system to remove phosphorus from liquid manure. Applied Engineering in Agriculture, 32: 103 – 112. doi:10.13031/aea.32.10999

Church, C. D., Hristov, A. N., Bryant, R. B., & Kleinman, P. J. A. (2017). Processes and treatment systems for treating high phosphorus containing fluids. US Patent 9,790.110B2.

Church, C. D., Hristov, A. N., Kleinman, P. J. A., Fishel, S. K., Reiner, M. R., & Bryant, R. B. (2018). Versatility of the MAPHEX System in removing phosphorus, odor, microbes, and alkalinity from dairy manures: A four-farm case study. Applied Engineering in Agriculture, 34: 567 – 572. doi:10.13031/aea12632

Church, C. D., Hristov, A., Bryant, R. B., & Kleinman, P. J. A. (2019). Methods for Rejuvenation and Recovery of Filtration Media. USDA Docket Number 129.17. U.S. Patent Application Serial No. 62/548,23

Church, C. D., S. K. Fishel, M. R. Reiner, P. J. A. Kleinman, A. N. Hristov, and R. B. Bryant. 2020. Pilot scale investigation of phosphorus removal from swine manure by the MAnure PHosphorus Extraction (MAPHEX) System. Applied Engineering in Agriculture 36(4): 525–531. doi: 10.13031/aea13698

https://www.ars.usda.gov/people-locations/person/?person-id=40912

https://tellus.ars.usda.gov/stories/articles/mining-manure-for-phosphorus/

https://agresearchmag.ars.usda.gov/2016/dec/phosphorus/

https://jofnm.com/article-112-Packaging-phosphorus-for-the-future.html

https://lpelc.org/versatility-of-the-manure-phosphorus-extraction-maphex-system-in-removing-phosphorus-odor-microbes-and-alkalinity-from-dairy-manures/

 

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2022. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth. Oregon, OH. April 18-22, 2022. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Demonstrated Maximization of Nutrient Recovery from Swine Manure

Purpose

Previous evaluations of the technologies investigated were conducted in a batch mode of testing. This program was conducted to demonstrate the viability of the technologies investigated to significantly reduce phosphorus when operated in a continuous mode, pulling manure directly from a deep pit swine operation without agitating the pit. Additionally, this demonstration also explored the ability of several dewatering technologies to produce a stackable product containing the high phosphorus recovered in the form of amorphous calcium phosphate. Considerable data on this final product was collected from multiple off-site takers expressing interest in the final product. Figure 1 is a picture of the pilot setup.

Figure 1: Pilot Setup

What Did We Do?

Mobile test units were employed at a swine operation representative of a typical operation in Mercer County, OH. Manure was directly pulled from the deep pit at the host farm, and after initial dewatering, it was treated under conditions consistent with a detailed program conducted under sponsorship from Ohio Farm Bureau in summer 2019. Treated manure was then sent to multiple dewatering options including passive dewatering (geotextile bags) and mechanical separation. The demonstration program ran for six months and a total of 110,000 gallons of manure was treated continuously with multiple samples collected for analysis at third-party certified labs.

Twenty cubic yards of the initial manure solids were collected for use by a Cleveland off-site taker to investigate its viability as a composting foundational ingredient, while several different off-site takers were sent samples of the final dewatered material containing the recovered phosphorus. An additional three tons of stackable final product were sent to several off-site takers in Allen County, IN for use and evaluation, an additional 20 cubic yards of the geobag containing product were sent to a local farmer for application in a 40 acre wheat field and the remainder of the material (both manure solids and geobag material) were land applied by the host farm.

Figure 2 is a picture of the dewatered manure solids collected.

Figure 2: Dewatered manure solids

Figure 3 is a picture of the recovered phosphorus product.

Figure 3: Recovered phosphorus product

What Have We Learned?

We were able to confirm that the technologies demonstrated performed as expected when operating in a continuous mode. An average initial dewatered manure cake of 20.8% solids was obtained without the use of polymers and a consistent stackable product of 24.4% was obtained with the mechanical dewatering equipment used. An average of 96.1% recovery of total phosphorus was obtained during the pilot. This value compares to the average total phosphorus reduction of 95.5% measured at the batch mode operation in summer 2019. Limitations of the equipment used limited operation to approximately 7gpm but with properly sized pumps, this could be increased.

The operating cost of treatment averaged out to $0.0063/gallon (measured at $0.0064 in summer 2019). To dewater the product to stackable form varied depending on the equipment used, but costs of close to $0.01/gallon have been estimated. For the application demonstrated, the use of a geobag for final dewatering was not considered a viable option due to high costs (approximately $0.15/gallon treated) and the space required.

Future Plans

The Maumee Valley Authority was awarded an USDA Conservation Grant in partnership with Allen / Adams County of Indiana and Applied Environmental Solutions to further demonstrate continuous flow operation over an extended duration at a deep pit swine, dairy and mixed manure lagoon operation. A major focus of this effort will be in establishing the value and path to market for co-product streams produced. Additionally, efforts are underway to design and build a portable unit capable of treating 500,000 gpd of manure over a 3-5 day period. This would allow for treatment at smaller farms without the need for capital outlay by the individual farms. One purchaser of this design has already been identified for delivery in 2023.

In addition to the above, initial testing of a companion technology for the recovery of ammonia is also under investigation. Ammonia can be recovered in any number of ammonium salts (such as ammonium sulfate) and represents another opportunity to maximize the resource recovery from agricultural streams.

Authors

Presenting author

Rick Johnson, Director of Commercial Development, Applied Environmental Solutions

Corresponding author

Theresa Dirksen, Agriculture & Natural Resources Director, Mercer County (OH)

Corresponding author email address

theresa.dirksen@mercercountyohio.org

Acknowledgements

    • Ohio Water Development Authority
    • Mercer County Board of Commissioners
    • Ivo & Linda Post, Host Farm

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