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Agriculture 2018, 8(4), 46; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture8040046

Enhanced Dispersion and Removal of Ammonia Emitted from a Poultry House with a Vegetative Environmental Buffer

1
ARS Coastal Plains Soil, Water & Plant Research Center, USDA, Florence, SC 29501, USA
2
Department of Animal and Food Sciences, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716, USA
3
ARS Hydrology and Remote Sensing Laboratory, USDA, Beltsville, MD 20705, USA
4
Trace-Gas Emissions, Harper Consulting Company, P.O. Box 772, Watkinsville, GA 30677, USA
5
Department of Earth and Atmospheric Science, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB T6G 2R3, Canada
6
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 February 2018 / Revised: 16 March 2018 / Accepted: 19 March 2018 / Published: 22 March 2018
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Abstract

Vegetative environmental buffers (VEBs), which are composed of tolerant trees, shrubs, and tall grasses, can be used to control and reduce the transport of ammonia (NH3) emissions from animal feeding operations (AFOs). However, the effectiveness of VEBs has not been quantitated. In this study, we measure the dispersion and removal of NH3 in simulated emissions from a small broiler house that was equipped with a VEB. The dispersion enhancement due to the VEB was estimated by comparing the measured downwind concentration of the co-released tracer gas, methane (CH4), to the theoretical CH4 concentrations at the same distance downwind without the VEB. The accuracy of the theoretical downwind concentrations calculated using the forward Lagrangian stochastic (fLS) technique was 95%, which was validated by comparing the measured and calculated CH4 concentrations in a separate experiment without the VEB. The VEB enhanced the dispersion of CH4 and reduced the downwind concentration to 63% of the theoretical concentration. In addition to dispersion, the VEB removed another 22% of the NH3, resulting in a net 51% decrease of the theoretical downwind concentration. These results clearly demonstrated that the VEB was effective both in dispersing and removing NH3 emitted from the broiler house. View Full-Text
Keywords: vegetative environmental buffer; broiler house emission; ammonia removal; dispersion enhancement; Lagrangian dispersion analysis vegetative environmental buffer; broiler house emission; ammonia removal; dispersion enhancement; Lagrangian dispersion analysis
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Ro, K.S.; Li, H.; Hapeman, C.J.; Harper, L.A.; Flesch, T.K.; Downey, P.M.; McConnell, L.L.; Torrents, A.; Yao, Q. Enhanced Dispersion and Removal of Ammonia Emitted from a Poultry House with a Vegetative Environmental Buffer. Agriculture 2018, 8, 46.

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