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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 34 No. 3, p. 1119-1130
    Received: Aug 12, 2004

    * Corresponding author(s): wpowers@iastate.edu
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Management Strategy Impacts on Ammonia Volatilization from Swine Manure

  1. Diane M. Panettaa,
  2. Wendy J. Powers *a and
  3. Jeffery C. Lorimorb
  1. a Department of Animal Science, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011
    b Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011


Ammonia emitted from manure can have detrimental effects on health, environmental quality, and fertilizer value. The objective of this study was to measure the potential for reduction in ammonia volatilization from swine (Sus scrofa domestica) manure by temperature control, stirring, addition of nitrogen binder (Mohave yucca, Yucca schidigera Roezl ex Ortgies) or urease inhibitor [N-(n-butyl) thiophosphoric triamide (NBPT)], segregation of urine from feces, and pH modification. Swine manure [total solids (TS) = 7.6–11.2%, total Kjeldahl nitrogen (TKN) = 3.3–6.2 g/L, ammonium nitrogen (NH4 + N ) = 1.0–3.3 g / L ] was stored for 24, 48, 72, or 96 h in 2-L polyvinyl chloride vessels. The manure was analyzed to determine pre- and post-storage concentrations of TS and volatile solids (VS), TKN, and NH+ 4–N. The concentration of accumulated ammonia N in the vessel headspace (HSAN), post-storage, was measured using grab sample tubes. Headspace NH3 concentrations were reduced 99.3% by segregation of urine from feces (P < 0.0001). Stirring and NBPT (152 μL/L) increased HSAN concentration (119 and 140%, respectively). Headspace NH3 concentration increased by 2.7 mg/m3 for every 1°C increase in temperature over 35°C. Slurry NH+ 4–N concentrations were reduced by segregation (78.3%) and acidification to pH 5.3 (9.4%), and increased with stirring (4.8%) and increasing temperature (0.06 g/L per 1°C increase in temperature over 35°C). Temperature control, urine–feces segregation, and acidification of swine manure are strategies with potential to reduce or slow NH+ 4–N formation and NH3 volatilization.

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