Scientists Plan to Explore Effectiveness of Nanoparticles to Reduce Gas Emissions from Swine Manure

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 2101. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.
calendar icon 31 March 2006
clock icon 3 minute read

Farm-Scape, Episode 2101

Researchers at the Prairie Swine Centre in Saskatoon are hoping to apply the emerging science of nanotechnology to the reduction of odor and gaseous emissions from swine manure.

In an effort to improve the health and safety of both swine barn workers and animals the Prairie Swine Centre is exploring several options for reducing odor and gaseous emissions, primarily hydrogen sulfide and ammonia, from swine manure.

One of those options is the use of nanoparticles.

Research scientist in engineering Dr. Bernardo Predicala told those on hand for Focus on the Future 2006 in Saskatoon, nanoparticles have been used in other applications including air purification and waste water treatment and now the goal is to adapt the technology to swine production.

"Nanoparticles are products of the new advancing technology of nanotechnology.

It's science where in you're able to manufacture materials in a more controlled way so that you can structure, mostly common materials, into a different material that are now having different properties than there normal counterparts.

The materials that we're going to start looking at are those that I've worked with before and we found to be effective in other applications and we found that to be safe.

One particular type is titanium dioxide.

A normal counterpart of that is used as pigment in paints but, as nanoparticles, we found them to be highly reactive to common gases that we're treating like ammonia or hydrogen sulfide.

Right now we're just going through the literature review of what candidate materials we're going to look at and then after that we're going to set up our experiments and then try different ways of deploying the materials into how they'll be effective in treating the swine manure gases."

Dr. Predicala says the research will be conducted in phases, over five years, and he expects to have preliminary indication of which candidate materials hold the most promise in about a year.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

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