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Assessing and addressing the impact of warmer autumns on the success of grain cooling - Dean Cook (FERA)

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    Assessing and addressing the impact of warmer autumns on the success of grain cooling - Dean Cook (FERA) Assessing and addressing the impact of warmer autumns on the success of grain cooling - Dean Cook (FERA) Presentation Transcript

    • Assessing and addressing the impact of warmer autumns on the success of grain cooling Dean Cook Science Strategy team
    • Grain Cooling
      • Grain is ventilated at low-volume rate of 10m 3 /h/t
      • Cooling must be –
        • fast enough to prevent insects breeding; and temperature as low as to cause death
        • Part of an integrated grain storage strategy in conjunction with drying, hygiene measures and monitoring
    • As a rule of thumb…….
      • Cool to below 15°C within 2 weeks to prevent the saw-toothed grain beetle breeding;
      • to below 10°C within a further 2 months to prevent the grain weevil breeding;
      • to below 5°C by winter (xmas) to prevent mites breeding and kill insects.
    • Cooling targets for UK stores using low volume aeration at 10 m 3 /tonne/hr
    • Has cooling become more difficult? – climate change
      • Climate change will bring;
        • Earlier, hotter harvests
        • Shorter milder winters
        • Extreme weather events
      • Issues for cooling?
        • High harvested temperatures
        • Fewer “windows” of cold night
        • time air available
        • Challenge to meet targets; speed
        • and temperature achieved
    • Comparison of mean monthly temperatures from 1961 to the present day. (Source: Manley, 1974; Parker et al ., 1992 – updated by the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research, Met. Office, Berkshire, UK.)
    • Minimum temperatures for the period immediately after harvest. (Source: Manley, 1974; Parker et al ., 1992 – updated by the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research, Met. Office, Berkshire, UK.)
    • Adaptation to climate change – demonstration project Objectives – “ How well are we doing?” “ How can we do things better?”
      • Measure on-farm cooling profiles in grain stores on 15 farms distributed throughout the UK from harvest 2007
      • To compare the performance of automated differential fan control with manual control at 3 sites using identical paired stores
      • To illustrate potential problems and “best practice”
    • Part 1. Efficient control – using differential thermostats
    • Differential thermostats
    • Advantages of differential thermostats; trials work, East Lincolnshire 1991.
    • Trial detail – differential thermostats vs manual control.
      • Focusing on 2 sites -
      • Site 1 -
      • Farm site, Darlington
      • 700t bulk of wheat at 14.5%mc
      • Cooled with pedestals at recommended spacing etc.
      • Bulk divided into virtual halves
        • half bulk controlled by 2°C differential
        • half bulk controlled by manual operation of fans
    • Darlington trial setup
    • Site 1 – Results; Temperatures at Darlington site and progress against cooling targets
    • Site 1 – Results; Cumulative fan hours run Up to 40% energy saving!
    • Comparison of insect control costs PROCESS COST FUNCTIONS Fumigation 150-200p/t - Disinfests Bulk insecticide admixture 50-75p/t - Prevents and disinfests Cooling (manually) 50 p/t - Prevents mc Cooling (automatic) 29 p/t movement - Prevents infestation - Preserves quality - Disinfests over a season
    • Trial detail – differential thermostats vs manual control.
      • Focusing on 2 sites -
      • Site 2 -
      • Co-operative store, Cambridgeshire
      • Two 6000t silos of wheat at 14-15%mc
      • Cooled with upward aeration system
        • One silo controlled by 4°C differential
        • One silo controlled by manual operation of fans
    • Site 2 – Results; Temperatures at Cambridgeshire site and progress against cooling targets
    • Part 2. Monitoring exercise – how well are growers doing?
    • Monitoring exercise overview iButtons monitoring ambient and fan temperature
    • Results – monitoring 12 sites across the country
      • Only 1 site achieved the 15°C target on time
      • 3 sites achieved the 10°C target on time
      • 3 sites achieved the target of 5°C on time
      • 11 stores cooled to 10°C
      • Only 4 stores cooled to 5°C and below
        Location Air flow P=Pedestal U=Under-floor Differential Target ( o C) Target met Best performing Berwickshire ~10m 3 /t/h P No   15 10 5 On time 1 week early 1 week early Worst performing Suffolk ~10m 3 /t/h U No   15 10 5 10 weeks late Not met Not met
    • Five day running mean of ambient temperatures at monitoring locations
    • Oxfordshire – why stop cooling?
    • Leicestershire – only cooled on 2 occasions
    • Lincolnshire – the importance of the correct differential
    • Part 3. What about the future? David Bruce Consulting Ltd
    • Weather data – UKCP09
      • Weather Generator of UKCP09 hourly weather
      • Assumptions
      • Time into future, in 30yr windows. 2020-2049
      • Emissions scenario. High
      • ‘ Percentile’ is probability of change being as large as embodied in the data:
        • 90% (‘very likely’)
        • 50% (‘as likely as not’)
      • Control ‘historical’ data. 1960-1989
      • Location: Odiham, Hants
    • Cooling parameters
      • Strategy - diffstat control set at 4 o C
      • Sensor at 0.5m depth
      • 4m bed, 14.5% mc, 25 o C, 10 m 3 /h.t, start 20 Aug
      • Target temperature 5 o C by end December
      • Also cooled to end February with the same target of 5 o C
    • Summary of climate change results
    • Conclusions
      • Not all storekeepers are hitting their cooling targets
      • Need to continue to improve operator practice
      • Differential thermostats can help you achieve cooling targets and can save up to 40% energy-use and running costs
      • Future climate change may impact on cooling targets but……will still be able to control insect pests
    • We would like to thank…….
      • Participating stores and in particular, Stuart Vernon (Grower, Country Durham), Andrew Ruff and Philip Darke (Camgrain) who took part in the differential control trials.
      •  
      • The work was funded by –
      • Warwick HRI's Defra-funded Innovation network for adapting agriculture to climate change.
      • Defra through the Sustainable Arable LINK programme
    • Thank you for listening!