Odor complaints from residential and commercial areas concerning poultry houses are increasing as more people move from urban centers to rural areas near poultry facilities. Several new technologies and methods of alleviating airborne pollutants that cause dust and odor emissions from poultry houses do exist, but very little documentation of pollutant load reductions for these technologies is available for producers wishing to make sound purchasing decisions.
In the Evaluation of Electrostatic Particle Ionization and BioCurtain Technologies to Reduce Dust, Odor and other Pollutants from Broiler Houses project, two technologies will be tested for their ability to reduce emissions of odor-causing ammonia and particulate matter. The first technology is Electrostatic Particle Ionization (EPI), which uses an array of stainless steel electrodes that generate an electric field capable of negatively charging the air particles within the poultry house. The particles are then attracted to grounded surfaces where they become concentrated, facilitating the cleaning process. The other technology, the BioCurtain (BC) system, uses a woven geotextile that helps settle airborne dust particles onto the ground after they are exhausted from the poultry house. When used in conjunction, these two technologies could effectively clear the air within the facility.
A two-phase project, the first phase involves setting up and testing the EPI and BC systems in a "treatment" poultry barn to verify that everything is working correctly. The second half of the project will involve comparing data from the treatment facility with a control facility that does not have either system installed. In addition to providing pollutant reduction data, a cost analysis will also be done to provide interested producers some insight into capital costs associated with the systems. Using this information, producers can determine if installation of these technologies will effectively meet their needs.