CategoryEnvironment - Other
Date Full Report Received07/23/2004
Date Abstract Report Received07/23/2004
InvestigationInstitution: Iowa State University
Primary Investigator: Dr. Kenneth Bryden Professor, Thomas Richard
Funded ByNational Pork Board
Would you fly on airplane that hadn’t been tested? Neither would anyone else. Over the past 3 decades, researchers have developed very accurate numerical models for airflow around an airplane geometry that predict how well their plane design will fly before ever building it. Until recently, this type of modeling was limited to research labs with supercomputers, but decreases in cost of computers and increases in their speed have made these modeling techniques accessible to people with lower budgets. Now, would you build a new hog confinement without testing it? Researchers in the Agricultural and Mechanical Engineering Iowa State University have applied the same numerical models used on airplanes to swine production systems to predict airflow, temperature, and air quality in and around the building. These models and their results are typically tedious and difficult to operate and require a computer expert/engineer to operate, but not many engineers have been in a hog building. So, ISU is developing a suite of tools that can turn a farmer into a Virtual Engineer. Virtual Engineering tools interface computational models with hog building geometry in a virtual reality environment making it possible for a livestock production specialist (farmer) to use the models and interactively alter the shape, size, operating conditions, or other characteristics of the components within the proposed system and immediately see the impact of these changes on his/her production operation. Virtual Engineering tools in the hands of hog building experts means better designs, better stewardship, known results before changing an existing building, and happier hogs. So, will pigs fly? No, but we can make sure the design of their building will be a success.