Airflow profile study of a compost dairy barn using a low-cost 3D-printed anemometer network
¹Universidad Nacional de Colombia sede Medellín, Facultad de Ciencias Agrarias, Departamento de Ingeniería Agrícola y Alimentos, CO050034 Medellín, Colombia
²Federal University of Lavras, Department of Engineering, BR37200-000 Lavras, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Mechanical ventilation is commonly used for environmental thermal regulation inside closed-field agricultural production systems. Analyzing the air distribution inside these facilities and the correct operation of the fans can be a challenging. This could be determined using cost prohibitive techniques as particle image velocimetry or deploying large wind sensors networks on-site. To avoid this limitation without a lack of measurement accuracy, this research was focused on developing and test a low-cost anemometer network based in low cost propeller’s anemometers, built using fused 3D-printed and open-hardware platforms. Four propeller anemometers with three to six blades were simulated using the 6-DOF method of ANSYS computer fluid dynamics software. Similar results were obtained for all the simulated models with minor differences. Anemometers were tested in an open circuit wind tunnel before to be evaluated in two open compost dairy barn building using high-volume low-speed and low-volume high-speed fans. Data were analyzed by employing contour maps, descriptive statistics and correlation. The results show that the anemometer network determines the fan’s wind profile for wind speeds over 0.7 m s-1 and it was possible to determine the facilities spots with ventilation problems. The proposed anemometer network and methodology are a good alternative to analyze the operating conditions of the tested agricultural facilities and optimize its performance.