Geothermal Systems for Heating & Cooling in Swine Barns
This study assessed the applicability of a geothermal system in swine production facilities. In-barn evaluation of the impact of the geothermal system on energy use, thermal environment, greenhouse gas emissions, and animal performance was conducted by comparing a swine grow-finish room with geothermal system to a conventional production room with a forced-convection gas-fired heater system over summer and winter seasons. Results showed that the room with the geothermal system consumed about 36% less total energy for heating and ventilation during cold season compared to the conventional room. However, during the warm season, the use of the geothermal system to cool the room resulted in larger energy use compared to the control room. Levels of greenhouse gases, namely, methane and carbon dioxide in the geothermal room when the system was in operation were significantly lower than that in the room with the conventional gas-fi red heater during both heating and cooling periods.