Summer is here and temperatures are soaring throughout the country. If you are sweating up a storm while working on your dairy, imagine how your cows feel. What methods are you using to mitigate the summer heat and its effects on your herd? Whether you provide your cows with shade, install fans or misters, or use a combination of these options on your dairy operation, make sure cow cooling is a top priority, especially during the summer months. In this article, Progressive Dairyman has asked companies that provide cow cooling products for updates on existing products or new offerings available to producers. Continue reading to see what company representatives had to say.
Based out of Chandler, Arizona
Cows in virtually every state require cooling during the summer months. We all know the consequences of heat stress – losses in milk production, reproductive performance and sometimes death.
As dairies are getting larger and larger, the number of fans needed to cool cows increases proportionately. Energy costs to operate these fans increase every year as well. It's important that fans be maintained properly in order to operate as efficiently as possible.
A key component of any dairy fan is the bearing. Large panel fans used to cool cows have been designed with flange bearings with grease zerks that require manual greasing once or twice a year. This often does not get done and consequently fans either perform inefficiently or wear out quickly.
A new product innovation of the Agriaire Powerfan is a completely sealed bearing that requires no manual greasing. This is welcomed news to dairy operations that often overlook the importance of keeping fan bearings properly greased for optimum performance.
Big Ass Fans
Based out of Lexington, Kentucky
Large-diameter, low-speed fans provide uniform air movement to create natural dairy housing in an amazingly quiet, energy-efficient and cost-effective way.
The benefit of air movement to effectively improve herd comfort and maintain milk production is well documented; specifically, air movement helps transition milk cows year-round despite seasonal changes and provides optimal cooling during the hottest months.
New innovations take the concept several steps further, perfecting the science of air movement and more durable air movement systems.
Powerfoil X2.0, the newest overhead fan from the Big Ass Fan Company, significantly increases the performance and coverage area of the company’s popular Powerfoil X. Deeper, more aggressive jets of air ultimately cool dairy herds more effectively while maintaining extraordinary efficiency.
The new iteration features a unique, new patented airfoil system that combines patented airfoils and winglets with patent-pending AirFence technology to increase overall coverage area by 28 percent. The fan has undergone thorough testing and durability improvements, resulting in an unprecedented full 15-year warranty.
Milking parlors can also benefit from a unique option on this fan. The Powerfoil X2.0 Wash-Down utilizes nonporous, nonabsorbent and corrosion resistant materials throughout, making it a resilient air-movement machine. This special package offers a stainless steel, wash-down motor to withstand frequent intense cleaning, food-duty epoxy and a completely sealed NitroSeal gearbox with food-grade oil.
Holding pens and feed bunks now have a misting option from the engineers at Big Ass Fans. Already renowned for durability, the Yellow Jacket and AirGo fans (pictured above) now offer ultra-fine misting packages that produce the same cooling effect as 11 or 22 tons of air conditioning, respectively, exactly where you need it and for only pennies per day.
Combining air movement with the atomized mist lowers the actual temperature by up to 30 degrees Fahrenheit without getting facilities, bedding or employees wet.
Based out of Eau Claire, Wisconsin
J&D is focusing on the complete ventilation system approach, which isn’t a new concept, but one that hasn’t been effectively accomplished in the dairy market, until now. Our central theme for the complete ventilation system is making sure that the design matches the needs of the customer, adapts to the building, and effectively operates in any climatic situation while providing the best possible conditions for the cow.
One area of the complete ventilation system approach that J&D has is a newfound mission to improve the inlet portion of the system. This mission is simply to improve the knowledge, engineering and utilization of inlets in the dairy industry worldwide.
We feel that the design of the physical inlet, the controller that operates the complete system and the improvement of the knowledge of application is paramount to the furthering environment of the dairy cow. These inlets range from various types of curtain systems, side wall inlets of all shapes and sizes, ceiling inlets, motorized shutters and we also have available air curtains with unique air pockets made in a triangular construction.
The days of having to flip a switch to open a curtain or turn on a fan are in the past. The use of our control line is the key to making the complete system work cohesively. Our controllers have the capability to know when certain products need to be turned on or off, how much they need to open or close, how many or how fast fans need to run in order to obtain that perfect climate for the dairy operation, maximizing the investment and the milk check.
Schaefer Ventilation Equipment
Based out of Sauk Rapids, Minnesota
In 2011, Schaefer launched the FlipFan dairy cooling system for holding pens, freestalls and open-lot facilities. This system combines advanced 36-inch high-velocity misting fans, a 180-degree horizontal rotation mounting structure and an automatic control system.
The control system is iPod-based and adjusts the misting fan’s output and direction with ambient conditions, which provides maximum day and night cow cooling. Schaefer provides two motor choices based on your application – one-half horsepower or three-quarter horsepower fans – in order to deliver the best return on investment (ROI) for your dairy.
In addition to motor selection, the dairy producer may also select the number of fans per truss and medium-pressure or high-pressure misting. This ensures proper cooling without excess consumption of energy or water. Environment sensing technology adjusts for wind, temperature and humidity. This keeps the cooling on the cows with greater effectiveness than any other competing system.
Performance testing by multiple universities was completed during the 2011 heat stress season. These performance tests also have white papers available for review.
Conclusions from one of these white papers state that the FlipFan system, equipped with adjustable fans, is more effective at lowering core body temperature, increasing resting time, and minimizing heat stress of lactating dairy cows in a semi-arid climate compared to standard non-adjustable cooling systems.
In order to achieve the greatest benefit from this system, it is recommended that it be operated continuously during periods of heat stress, assuming an adequate source of water is available.
Additionally, Schaefer Ventilation Equipment’s new 57-inch exhaust fan offers a high-efficiency model and a high-volume model to create the correct velocity needed to optimize cooling while controlling energy cost for cross ventilation and tunnel ventilation.
All models have been BioEnvironmental and Structural Systems (BESS) lab-tested for cubic feet per minute (CFM) and CFM/Watts to ensure proper application and the best ROI for the dairy. Multiple configurations of motors and blades are available to fit the exact configuration for each dairy. PD
Progressive Dairyman magazine