Energy is an important cost factor in the hatchery. Using energy-efficient incubators and HVAC systems can greatly reduce your operational costs. Then again, the benefits are more than just financial: A smaller ecological footprint also creates a more sustainable image for your hatchery. In this article, we consider different ways for hatcheries to achieve the goal of energy conservation and become a more sustainable business.
Pressure-controlled airflow for maximum energy efficiency
Single-stage incubators have specific air volume demands that vary depending on the stage of the incubation cycle. It is crucial that the supplied air has the correct temperature and humidity to guarantee maximum incubation results. Because outside climate conditions are unstable, a well-designed Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system is required to correctly condition the outside air before bringing it into the incubator rooms and single-stage incubators. As every cubic metre (m³) of conditioned air costs money, selecting the right energy-efficient HVAC system is key.
Certain HVAC systems constantly supply a fixed maximum air volume to the setter and hatcher room. This may seem like a good way to ensure proper climate control when, in fact, a lot of energy is wasted. As the air consumption of single-stage incubators – and incubator rooms – is variable, it is more energy- and cost-efficient to install a pressure-controlled HVAC system that brings in and conditions only the exact amount of air needed at a particular moment in time. Whenever there is an increase or decrease in air consumption, the pressure will respectively drop or rise. A pressure sensor records these fluctuations and adjusts the ventilator speed and airflow. The benefits are significant:
- The ventilator’s electricity consumption is minimized.
- The optimal air volume is being heated, cooled, humidified or dehumidified. In other words, no conditioned air is wasted. This significantly reduces the boiler’s and chiller’s energy consumption.
Pressure control can be applied for all rooms in the hatchery and deliver substantial energy savings, provided that doors are kept closed as much as possible to minimize the loss of conditioned air.