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Reducing Water Usage and Environmental Impact

11 September 2012, at 9:13am

US - As part of an effort to sustain innovation in poultry production and processing, six continuation projects are focused on novel types of engineering and technology research activities that address critical issues facing poultry production from the growout house to the processing plant, says Dr Doug Britton, manager of the Agricultural Technology Research Program (ATRP), Georgia Research Tech Institute. Here he discusses reducing water usage and environmental impact.

ATRP’s Dynamic Filtration project is investigating techniques to more selectively capture target impurities from liquid streams in a way that facilitates the recovery of value-added byproducts while still meeting or exceeding water reuse guidelines.

Researchers are focused on three primary applications: poultry chillers, marinations, and brines. A bench-scale dynamic filtration device has been constructed and evaluated. The system employs greater filter flux rates (L/m2*hr) and solids removal as compared with a traditional poultry secondary screening system utilizing approximately 300-micron screen. Preliminary results are promising; however, additional work is needed to complete the assembly of a backwash system.

Here, the team is using a servo motor with programmable logic controller (PLC) so that motor RPM and torque can be used for feedback. In addition, the team is augmenting the existing piston pump setup to eliminate liquid flow back to the piston arm so that the overall pressure profile within the pumping system can be monitored.

Continued progress will advance the ability of processors to improve water reuse and food safety initiatives.