Skip to main content
ARS Home » Midwest Area » Ames, Iowa » National Laboratory for Agriculture and The Environment » Soil, Water & Air Resources Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #343834

Research Project: Reducing the Environmental Footprint from Agricultural Systems through Managing Resources and Nutrient Inputs

Location: Soil, Water & Air Resources Research

Title: Odorous compounds sources and transport from a swine deep-pit finishing operation: A case study

Author
item Trabue, Steven
item Scoggin, Kenwood
item Tyndall, John - Iowa State University
item Sauer, Thomas - Tom
item Hernandez-ramirez, Guillermo - University Of Alberta
item Pfeiffer, Richard
item Hatfield, Jerry

Submitted to: Journal of Environmental Management
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/30/2018
Publication Date: 3/1/2019
Citation: Trabue, S.L., Scoggin, K.D., Tyndall, J., Sauer, T.J., Hernandez-Ramirez, G., Pfeiffer, R.L., Hatfield, J.L. 2019. Odorous compounds sources and transport from a swine deep-pit finishing operation: A case study. Journal of Environmental Management. 233:12-23. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2018.10.110.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2018.10.110

Interpretive Summary: Odorous compounds were monitored and characterized for abundance, origin, and transport downwind from a naturally ventilated swine finishing operation in central Iowa. Odor from swine operations originated mainly from manure storage areas. Odor profile changed as it moved away from the swine facility. Odor was transported mainly in gas phase with a small fraction carried on dust. Pumping of manure storage areas resulted in a large odor event with hydrogen sulfide being the main odorous compound. Information in this report will be of value to growers, engineers, and scientist developing odor mitigation practices and technologies since this report will assist in targeting the types of compounds responsible for odor and the main sources of those odorous compounds.

Technical Abstract: Odorous compounds were monitored and characterized for abundance, origin, and transport downwind from a naturally ventilated swine finishing operation in central Iowa. Major odorant classes detected at the swine facility included volatile sulfur compounds (VSC), volatile fatty acids (VFA), phenol and indole compounds. Winter had the lowest odor concentrations than any of the other seasons. Manure storage areas were more odorous than animal housing areas with concentration levels on averages about an order of magnitude higher. Key odorants associated with manure storage areas included hydrogen sulfide (H2S), methanethiol, butanoic acid, 3-methy butanoic acid, pentanoic acid, 4-methylphenol, 4-ethylphenol. and 3-methylindole. Only H2S was detected at locations around the facility above its odor threshold values (OTV) and 4-methylphenol and 3-methylindole were the only compounds detected above their OTV 1.5 km downwind from the swine facility. Odors generated during pumping of the deep pits were mainly VSC with H2S concentrations the most sensitive to pumping. There was little difference between levels of PM10 collected in the spring, summer or fall, but winter PM10 was lower than the other seasons. Profile of odorous compounds sorbed to PM10 demonstrates that PM10 emitted from the facility originated from animal housing areas. Odorants transported on PM10 were less than 0.1% of odorants transported in the gas phase. This study shows mitigation strategies should focus on gaseous compounds emitted from deep-pits and during pumping of deep-pits.