Additive to Mitigate Odor and Hydrogen Sulfide Gas Risk from Gypsum Bedded Dairy Manure

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Purpose

Dangerous levels of hydrogen sulfide (H2S) gas released from gypsum-bedding-laden dairy manure storages have imposed risks to animal and human health, as demonstrated both on-farm and in bench scale studies (Fabian-Wheeler et al., 2017; Hile, 2016). Gypsum bedding is popular with some producers for advantages to cow comfort and health along with agronomic benefits. This project demonstrated the effect of iron oxide (FeO2) as a promising additive to dairy manure storages on mitigating H2S releases and odor.

What did we do?

Two bench-scale trials comprised three replicates each (15 kg manure each vessel) of three treatments: (1) control (dairy manure only), (2) manure with gypsum added 0.35% by weight, and (3) manure with gypsum and iron oxide added at a 1:1 molar ratio with gypsum. Headspace gas concentrations were measured using a Fourier transform infrared analyzer (FTIR model 700, California Analytical, Inc., Orange, CA) from each experimental vessel prior to and during manure agitation. Nutrient analyses were performed upon initial mixing and at the end of the incubations (PSU Agricultural Analytical Laboratory and Fairway Laboratories). Final incubation of the first trial included an odor evaluation of headspace gas according to international standard EN 13725 using qualified human assessors at the Penn State Odor Assessment Laboratory (abe.psu.edu/research/natural-resource-protection/odors). Odor quality testing on undiluted headspace gas used the labelled magnitude scale (LMS), Odor Intensity Referencing Scale (OIRS) and Hedonic Tone (pleasantness).

What have we learned?

High total sulfur in gypsum-laden manure confirms that gypsum provides the sulfur source that is converted to H2S. However, introduction of iron oxide maintained 98.8% total sulfur of manure sample by the end of incubation. The H2S concentrations remain low (below 5 ppm) in static conditions until gases are immediately released as soon as manure is agitated. Maximum H2S concentrations were reduced 83% to 96% in gypsum-laden manure by adding iron oxide (Figure 1). Despite anecdotal field reports of increased malodor associated with gypsum bedded manure, odor detection threshold (DT) did not increase with addition of gypsum compared to the control (manure only). However a 1:1 molar ration of iron oxide reduced the DT by approximately 50%. Odor quality results show that gypsum-laden manure created a less pleasant odor when compared to control manure.

Figure 1. Analyzer H2S concentrations from vessel headspace for each treatment evaluated sequentially over time during three agitation events at day 17, 24, and 31 manure age

Future Plans

Field-scale research would strengthen these findings and document management and economics associated with the iron oxide treatment use on farm. Additional odor surveys would confirm odor intensity reduction via iron oxide.

Corresponding author, title, and affiliation

Eileen E. Fabian (Wheeler), Professor in Agricultural and Biological Engineering (ABE) at Penn State (PSU)

Corresponding author email

fabian@psu.edu

Other authors

Long Chen, Ph.D. Candidate in ABE at PSU, Dr. Michael Hile, Project Associate in ABE at PSU and Dr. Mary Ann Bruns, Associate Professor in Ecosystems Science & Management at PSU

Additional information

Fabian-Wheeler, E., M. L. Hile, D. J. Murphy, D. E. Hill, R. Meinen, R. C. Brandt, H. A. Elliott, D. Hofstetter. 2017. Operator Exposure to Hydrogen Sulfide from Dairy Manure Storages Containing Gypsum Bedding. Journal Agricultural Safety and Health 23(1): 9-22.

Hile. M. L. 2016. Hydrogen sulfide production in manure storages on Pennsylvania dairy farms using gypsum bedding. Ph.D. dissertation. University Park, PA.: The Pennsylvania State University, Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering.

Acknowledgements

This work was a partnership of Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences graduate student competitive grant program, Penn State Extension, and USA Gypsum

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. 2017. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth: Spreading Science and Solutions. Cary, NC. April 18-21, 2017. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) Emissions from Beef Feedlot Pen Surface as Affected by Within Pen Location, Moisture, and Temperature

Purpose

Determine the effects of moisture, temperature and within pen location on odorous emissions from pen surfaces generated from cattle fed a diet containing 30% wet distillers grain plus soluble (WDGS). This work is focused on developing precision practices for mitigating odor.

What did we do?

A laboratory study was conducted to determine effects of pen location, moisture, and temperature on emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC). Feedlot surface material (FSM) was obtained from pens where cattle were fed a diet containing 30% wet distillers grain plus soluble (WDGS). The FSM were collected from the bunk, drainage, and mound areas within three feedlot pens. The FSM were mixed with water to represent dry, wet, or saturated conditions and then incubated at temperatures of 5, 15, 25 and 35ºC. A wind tunnel and TD GC/MS were used to quantify emissions of eight volatile fatty acids (VFA), five aromatics and two volatile sulfur compounds (VSC).

graph showing experiment results. Contribution to total odor activity value (OAV) for each feedlot pen location, moisture condition, and temperature. All within treatment odor activity values sum to 100%.What have we learned?

Evaluation of emissions as affected by the specified environmental conditions was performed on individual compounds which were normalized using an odor activity value (OAV). When the odor compounds were normalized with respect to their activity value, many of the measured compounds contributed minimally to the overall odor activity. Approximately 10% of the OAV was contributed by three VFAs and one aromatic (4-methylphenol) compound. The VSC contributed the most with 87.3% of the total OAV.

More than half of the OAV occurred at the base of the mound with the bunk and drainage contributing approximately equally to the remainder. The frequent wetting and drying cycles occurring near the base of the mound may contribute to a more diverse microbial population when compared with the chronically wet to saturated conditions existing behind the feed bunk.

The addition of water significantly increased the OAV. Approximately 92% of the OAV was accounted for by wet and saturated conditions. In general, the addition of water decreased emissions of VFA and aromatics, and increased the emission of sulfides. Two possible causes were offered. First, the greater solubility of the VFA and aromatics allowed them to be retained in the solution fraction of the FSM and not be emitted. Second, the addition of water results in an anaerobic environment and reducing conditions, which are conducive to production of VSC.

Temperature significantly affected OAV with over 60% of the total OAV occurring at 35ºC. The 35ºC temperature increased each odor compounds with the impact being the greatest for VSCs. It appears from this study, odor emissions are greatest during warm (i.e. > 25ºC) wet periods and from specific location within the pen.

Future Plans

Understanding the spatial variability of odor emission is important in the development of cost-effective management practices. Based on the results from this investigation, field-scale studies will be conducted to develop precision odor mitigation practices.

Authors

Bryan L. Woodbury, Agricultural Engineer, USDA-ARS, U.S. Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, NE bryan.woodbury@ars.usda.gov

John E. Gilley, Agr. Eng, USDA-ARS. David B. Parker, Prof., Life, Earth and Environ. Sci., West Texas A&M University. David B. Marx, Prof, Statistics, Univ. of NE. Roger A. Eigenberg, Agr. Eng., USDA-ARS, U.S.

Additional information

http://www.ars.usda.gov/Main/docs.htm?docid=14337

https://www.agupdate.com/todaysproducer/news/local/with-feedlot-manure-it-pays-to-be-precise/article_015b6db8-a234-582d-8c0e-04b99cf0f730.html

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. 2015. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth: Spreading Science and Solutions. Seattle, WA. March 31-April 3, 2015. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Use of zilpaterol hydrocholoride to reduce odors and gas production from the feedlot surface when beef cattle are fed diets with or without ethanol byproducts

Purpose

Many malodorous compounds emitted from the feedlot surface of beef finishing facilities result from protein degradation of feces and urine (Mackie et al., 1998; Miller and Varel, 2001, 2002). The inclusion of wet distillers grain with solubles (WDGS) in beef finishing diets has been shown to increase nitrogen excretion (Spiehs and Varel, 2009; Hales et al., 2012) which can increase odorous compounds in waste (Spiehs and Varel, 2009). Zilpaterol hydrochloride (ZH) is a supplement fed to cattle for a short period of time (21 days) near the end of the finishing phase to improve efficiency of lean gain. Improvements in feed efficiency and lean tissue accretion potentially decrease nitrogen excretion from cattle. Therefore, the use of ZH in feedlot diets, especially those containing WDGS, may reduce the concentration of odorous compounds on the feedlot surface. The objective of this study was to determine if the addition of ZH to beef f inishing diets containing 0 or 30% WDGS would decrease odor and gas production from the feedlot surface.

What did we do?

Sixteen pens of cattle (25-28 cattle/pen) were used in a 2 x 2 factorial study. Factors included 0 or 30% WDGS inclusion and 0 or 84 mg/steer daily ZH for 21 d at the end of the finishing period. Each of the four following treatment combinations were fed to 4 pens of cattle: 1) finishing diet containing 0% WDGS and 0 mg ZH, 2) finishing diet containing 30% WDGS and 0 mg ZH, 3) finishing diet containing 0% WDGS and 84 mg/animal daily ZH and 4) finishing diet containing 30% WDGS and 84 mg/animal daily ZH. A minimum of 20 fresh fecal pads were collected from each feedlot pen on six occasions. Samples were mixed within pen and a sub-sample was placed in a small wind-tunnel. Duplicate samples for each pen were analyzed. Odorous volatile organic compounds were collected on sorbent tubes and analyzed for straight-chain fatty acids, branched-chain fatty acids, aromatic compounds, and sulfide compounds using a thermal desorption-gas chromatograph-mass spectrometry (Aglient Technologies, Inc, Santa Clara, CA). Ammonia (NH3) production was measured using a Model 17i Ammonia Analyzer (Thermo Scientific, Franklin, MA), and hydrogen sulfide (H2S) was measured using a Model 450i Hydrogen Sulfide Analyzer (Thermo Scientific, Franklin, MA).

What have we learned?

Inclusion of ZH in beef finishing diets was effective in lowering the concentration of total sulfides, total branched-chain fatty acids, and hydrogen sulfide from fresh cattle feces. Inclusion of 30% WDGS to beef feedlot diets increased the concentration of odorous aromatic compounds from feces. Ammonia concentration was not affected by the inclusion of either WDGS or ZH in the finishing diet. Producers may see a reduction in odorous emissions when ZH are fed to beef finishing cattle.

Table 1. Effect of ZH and WDGS inclusion in beef feedlot diets on concentration of odorous volatile organic compounds from cattle feces

Future Plans

Additional research is planned to evaluate the use of β-agonists, such as ZH, with moderate and aggressive implant strategies. These implants may further improve feed efficiency and lean gain, thereby potentially reducing excess nutrient excretion and odorous emissions. Evaluation odorous emissions from the feedlot surface when ZH are fed is also needed.

Authors

Mindy J. Spiehs, USDA, ARS, U.S. Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, NE mindy.spiehs@ars.usda.gov

Kristin E. Hales, USDA, ARS, U.S. Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, NE

Additional information

Mention of trade names or commercial products in their article is solely for the purpose of providing specific information and does not imply recommendation or endorsement by the USDA. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Literature cited

Hales, K. E., N. A. Cole, and J. C. MacDonald. 2012. Effects of corn processing method and dietary inclusion of wet distillers grains with solubles on energy metabolism, carbon-nitrogen balance, and methane emissions of cattle. J. Anim. Sci. 90:3174-3185.

Mackie, R. I., P. G. Stroot, and V. H. Varel. 1998. Biochemical identification and biological origin of key odor components in livestock waste. J. Anim. Sci. 76:1331-1342.\

Miller, D. N. and V. H. Varel. 2001. In vitro study of the biochemical origin and production limits of odorous compounds in cattle feedlots. J. Anim. Sci. 79:2949-2956.

Miller, D. N. and V. H. Varel. 2002. An in vitro study of manure composition on the biochemical origins, composition, and accumulation of odorous compounds in cattle feedlots . J. Anim. Sci. 80:2214-2222.

Spiehs, M. J. and V. H. Varel. 2009. Nutrient excretion and odorant production in manure from cattle fed corn wet distillers grains with solubles. J. Anim. Sci. 87:2977-2984.

Acknowledgements

The authors wish to thank Alan Kruger and Elaine Ven John for assistance with data collection.

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. 2015. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth: Spreading Science and Solutions. Seattle, WA. March 31-April 3, 2015. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Effects of Subsurface Litter Application Technology on Odor


Purpose         

Manure handling and application to agricultural land from animal facilities creates odor nuisances where population sprawl encroaches into once rural areas. The University of Maryland Eastern Shores (UMES) and The Pennsylvania State University (PSU) collaborated on data collection to quantify the odor reduction benefit of a novel technology called the Subsurfer which places poultry litter of ≤ 25% moisture content beneath the soil surface as opposed to traditional broadcast application.

What did we do?

Two 80-foot square locations were chosen at PSU’s Ag Progress site having similar grassy vegetation. For three separate trials, turkey litter was used, a slight departure from the usual use of poultry litter. This litter was chosen because it was available, and had a favorable moisture content of less than 25%. Three treatments were applied; subsurface application for location one , broadcasting for location two using the Subsurfer at the rate of two tons per acre, and no litter as a background. . Field-applied litter was evaluated using Nasal Ranger Field Olfactometer (NRO) instruments measuring dilutions-to-threshold (D/T) during field application employing the Multiple-Assessor Repeat Observation (MARO) method (Brandt et at., 2011a and 2011b). Odor assessment teams made observations at each location prior to litter application (background measurement) and at 1, 4, and 24 hr after the litter was applied at each location. Whole air samples were collected in 10-liter Tedlar® bags 4 hr after litter application using surface isolation flux chambers and the vacuum suitcases. A team of five qualified odor panelists quantified odor detection threshold (DT) using Dynamic Triangular Forced-Choice Olfactometry (DTFCO) on an Ac’ScentTM International Dynamic Olfactometer (St. Croix Sensory, Lake Elmo, MN) the same day of sample collection.

What have we learned?

Results show greater than 75% reduction in mean odor concentration by DTFCO and NRO-MARO methods when the Subsurfer is used. Figure 1 shows the odor concentration D/T reduction of 92% (97% less background) for the 9 July 2013 data collection event when applying litter using the Subsurfer. Figure 1. odor concentration for turkey litter applied using the subsurfer and surface applied litter

Results from subsequent events (23 and 25 July 2013) showed significant reduction as well not below 75% when litter was applied using the Subsurfer. Figure 2 exhibits the same trend of 86% reduction (92% less background) in odor concentration DT using the DTFCO method. Again, measurements from subsequent data collection events yield similar results (minimum 75% reduction of odor concentration when the Subsurfer is used).

Figure 2. odor concentration for turkey litter applied using the subsurfer and surface applied litter

Future Plans

No future work is planned at this time.

Authors

Hile, Michael, Ph. D. Candidate in Agricultural and Biological Engineering (ABE) at Penn State (PSU) mlh144@psu.edu

Dr. Robin Brandt, Senior Lecturer in ABE at PSU, Ms. Nancy Chepketer, Graduate Assistant at UMES, Dr. Eileen E. Fabian, Professor in ABE at PSU and Dr. Herschel A. Elliott, professor in ABE at PSU, Dr. Arthur Allen, Associate Professor and Associate Resea

References              

Brandt, R.C., H.A. Elliott, M.A.A. Adviento-Borbe, E.F. Wheeler, P.J.A. Kleinman, and D.B. Beegle. 2011a. Field Olfactometry Assessment of Dairy Manure Land Application Methods. J. Environ. Qual. 40: 431-437.

Brandt, R.C., M.A.A. Adviento-Borbe, H.A. Elliott, E.F. Wheeler. 2011. Protocols for Reliable Field Olfactometry Odor Evaluations. J. Appl. Engr Agr. Vol. 27(3): 457-466.

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. 2015. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth: Spreading Science and Solutions. Seattle, WA. March 31-April 3, 2015. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Swine Manure Odor Reduction Using a Humic Amendment: On-Farm Demonstration


Why Study Odors from Pig Farms?

Odor-related nuisance complaints associated with animal production facilities are on the rise as residential sprawl encroaches on once rural areas. The efficacy of odor control additives is highly variable and most have limited success. This project demonstrated the efficacy of a commercial humic-material product (ManureMaxTM, Manufactured by JDMV Holding, LLC; Huston, TX) for limited control of liquid swine manure odors.

What did we do?

Two similarly-operated, 2,250-pig, tunnel-ventilated finishing barns on one farm were used for the demonstration. Barns were widely-separated by 1,800 feet of woodland and fields and were occupied by pigs of similar age. The underfloor manure storage pit (5-ft deep) of one barn received monthly additions with the additive while the other barn received no additive. After 20 weeks when hogs were finished for market and barns cleaned for restocking, treatments were switched so the previously untreated barn received the amendment. Odors at the barn ventilation exhaust were evaluated monthly by direct sensory methods (olfactometry) using human subjects. Field-applied manure was evaluated at the end of each 20-week grow-out period. Nasal Ranger Field Olfactometer (NRO) units were used to evaluate barn exhaust odor dilutions-to-threshold (D/T) and odors during field application, employing the Multiple-Assessor Repeat Observation (MARO) method (B randt et at., 2011a and 2011b). Barn ventilation exhaust was normalized against fan velocity and compared as odor flux (odor units min-1) among treatments. Whole air samples were collected in 10-liter TedlarTM® bags during each field visit and brought back to the Penn State Odor Assessmnt Laboratory (PSOAL) for evaluation. A team of five qualified odor panelists quantified odor detection threshold (DT) using Dynamic Triangular Forced-Choice Olfactometry (DTFCO) on an Ac’ScentTM International Dynamic Olfactometer (St. Croix Sensory, Lake Elmo, MN) within 10 hours of sample collection.

What have we learned?

Results show a 21% reduction in mean barn odor exhaust as shown in Table 1 and Table 2. The humic amendment significantly decreased barn ventilation odor flux by 21% in both field NRO and laboratory DTFCO evaluations. Evaluation of field applied manure yield a 21% and 60% decrease in odor concentrations for NRO and DTFCO, respectively.mean barn ventilation odor flux

mean barn ventilation odor flux

field-applied manure odor concentration

field-applied manure odor concentration DT

Authors

Hile, Michael, Ph. D. Candidate in Agricultural and Biological Engineering (ABE) at Penn State (PSU) mlh144@psu.edu

Brandt, Robin, Senior Lecturer in ABE at PSU, Eileen E. Fabian, Professor in ABE at PSU and Herschel A. Elliott, professor in ABE at PSU. Robert E. Mikesell, Program Coordinator and Senior Lecturer, Department of Animal Science at PSU.

Additional information

Brandt, R.C., H.A. Elliott, M.A.A. Adviento-Borbe, E.F. Wheeler, P.J.A. Kleinman, and D.B. Beegle. 2011a. Field Olfactometry Assessment of Dairy Manure Land Application Methods. J. Environ. Qual. 40: 431-437.

Brandt, R.C., M.A.A. Adviento-Borbe, H.A. Elliott, E.F. Wheeler. 2011. Protocols for Reliable Field Olfactometry Odor Evaluations. J. Appl. Engr Agr. Vol. 27(3): 457-466.

Brandt, R. C., H. A. Elliott, E. E. Fabian, M. L. Hile, R. E. Mikesell, Jr., 2014. Manure Additive Shows Swine Odor Reduction. Fact Sheet. Penn State University, Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering.

Acknowledgements

Thanks to JDMV Holding, LLC Houston, TX) for providing funding and product for this project. This project would not have been possible without the support from Natural Resources Conservation Service’ (NRCS) Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) program.

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. 2015. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth: Spreading Science and Solutions. Seattle, WA. March 31-April 3, 2015. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.

Making Sense of Smells – Communicating Odors to Diverse Audiences

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Example of odor visualization system using colors and shapes to replace chemical jargon.

Why Is Smell and Odor Important to Animal Agriculture?

Smell is perhaps the least understood of our five senses.  Yet, the human perception of odor may mean the difference between war and peace for a livestock farmer and his neighbors.  Because the science of  smells is complex, there is a tendency to run straight for the organic chemistry book when we try to describe farmstead odors.  This approach goes right over the heads of most people.  There must be a better way to communicate odors to diverse audiences.  This workshop can be utilized by teachers or extension staff to teach about communication of a topic that is frequently encountered by farmers, ag professionals, and others. To see the presentation slides, scroll to the bottom of the page.

Learning Objectives

This two hour workshop will explain how to use an innovative visual technique to describe farmstead odors to general audiences without resorting to chemical jargon.  The visualization technique based on shapes and colors was developed at Oklahoma State University in the mid 1990s, and has been used to talk about odors with many diverse audiences.  The method demonstrates that odors have “structure”, and can be measured using the four concepts: character, concentration, intensity, and persistence.

Students will also participate in a mock laboratory exercise to demonstrate how odor intensity and pleasantness are measured.  Results of the exercise will be analyzed in “real time”.  Further analyses of previous exercise runs will be compared and contrasted to the workshop results.  This laboratory has been presented to over 250 college freshmen and their results are presented in this recording.

Workshop Introduction

What is an Odor?

Measuring Odors

Odor Experiment

Another Odor Experiment

Physiology of Smell

Author

Douglas W. Hamilton, Associate Professor and Extension Waste Management Specialist, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service dhamilt@okstate.edu

Doug Hamilton is an associate professor of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering at Oklahoma State University.  He has three degrees in Agricultural Engineering from the University of Arkansas, Iowa State University, and Penn State University.  His sense of smell remains keen despite the fact he has worked with livestock manure for nearly 34 years.

For More Information

 

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. 2013. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth: Spreading Science and Solutions. Denver, CO. April 1-5, 2013. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.