Research Project Details

Project Details

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Effects of an in-shed sprinkler cooling system multiple parameters
Summary Relative humidity at bird/litter level in meat chicken shed affects the ability for birds to regulate body temperature and affects litter drying rate. The purpose of this project is to evaluate an inshed sprinkler system that is operated instead of evaporative cooling pads. The sprinklers reduce relative humidity at bird/litter level, which helps with birds to keep cool and they system is also be used to promote bird activity and settle dust as required.

The sprinkler cooling system applies 812 ml of water per square meter every 760 minutes. It is used for activity promotion and dust settling after approximately day 10 of a growout. When used for cooling, it operates more frequently. When used instead of evaporative cooling pads only one third the amount of water is required for the same amount of cooling (based on independent research) and therefore saves water and introduces less water into the poultry shed. Rather than humidifying air in the shed, it applies water to the birds and litter, which are then cooled by inshed air speed. (Please note: This system MUST NOT be compared with the performance of fogging systems or existing bird/floor wetting systems.)

Benefits of this sprinkler system will be measured in terms of:
temperature and relative humidity at floor level
bird temperature (noncontact, surface temperature observations)
litter conditions (including moisture content and caking)
water usage compared to evaporative cooling pads and

The sprinkler system will be tested in commercial growing sheds under the supervision of the grower.
Program Chicken Meat
Research organisation The State of Queensland acting through the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries
Objective summary Demonstrate the application of a water sprinkler cooling system into tunnelventilated meat chicken sheds.
Quantify and communicate the benefits/challenges of using the sprinkler cooling system in commercial meat chicken production in terms of growing conditions (bird ‘comfort’ temperature) and improved litter conditions and water savings.
Project Stage Current
Project start date Sunday, May 01, 2016
Project completion date Wednesday, January 31, 2018
Journal articles from project Not Available
National priority An environmentally sustainable Australia
Rural priority Adoption of R&D
RIRDC goal CME-Increase the productivity and efficiency of chicken meat production
Principal researcher Mark Dunlop
Research manager Kylie Hewson
Admin contact Paul Hickey