Detailed Design Considerations

The system must be adapted to the individual room and pen, if they are various. Contact VengSystem or local representative for information and guidance before you settle your new design.

New house

Design your pens with depth twice the width to get clear zones for resting, eating and dunging. With cooler climate make resting zone with solid insulated floor, with warmer climate make a moveable lying board to lie at the slats. A good pen design is 2.4 meter width and 4.8 meter depth. Design 0.08 square meters per weaner for lying board and canopy.

The canopy must be sloped in the lowest position with an opening 0.4 meters at the front. It must in lowest position be air tight to rear wall and penning walls. VengSystem specify the number and position of the heat lamps, which requires a hole with diameter 210 mm. Piglets weaned at 4 week demand 10 Watt heat, piglets weaned at 3 week demand 15 Watt heat. If the average outdoor temperature in the coldest month is above -4°, you do not need any space heaters, if your ventilation system has good control of minimum ventilation. For drying out and preheating you need a mobile heater, a space heater system is inadequate for this job.

Renovating with existing floor heat

Stop the floor heat; be sure that no water circulates. The floor must be well insulated and avoid thermal bridges. Redesign the canopy, so it slopes with 0.4 meters. Make the canopy in one moveable piece with no gaps at the rear and along sides. VengSystem specify the number and position of the heat lamps, which requires a hole with diameter 210 mm. Piglets weaned at 4 week demand 10 Watt heat, piglets weaned at 3 week demand 15 Watt heat. If the average outdoor temperature in the coldest month is above -4°, you do not need any space heaters, if your ventilation system has good control of minimum ventilation. For drying out and preheating you need a mobile heater, a space heater system is inadequate for this job.
If you question the floor insulation or a thermal bridge you may add extra heat. The controller will take only the heat required, so extra heat capacity does not necessary mean extra heat costs.

Renovating former farrowing or finisher room for weaners

Because intelligent canopy work with much lower ambient temperatures you can convert elder buildings to weaner section without extra insulation. In some cases the existing floor can be left unchanged keeping building cost at an absolute minimum. If you might have thermal bridges you can compensate with some extra heating lamps.

Sorting piglets at start of batch

Intelligent canopies give you the possibility to sort the piglets after weight, so the biggest are in some pens, the average in some other pens and the smallest in other pens, which even might have an extra heat lamp. When the smallest go together they perform better and you do not have to heat the whole room to meet the demand of the smallest, which in turn also saves energy.
A system with water based floor heat cannot differentiate among pens; they all will be equally warm.

Disease pens

Within the European Union farmers must have sick pens available. With intelligent canopies one of the pens can qualify for this. In order to improve conditions for unhealthy pigs the lifting is delayed, so they are kept warmer. The delay is easy adjustable.

Controllers

200-240 Volt supply: Up to three lamps in a pen, a VE122 double controller is fixed at the wall aligning the common penning wall. With three lamps a junction box with outlets for the heat lamps are fixed right and left of the controller VE122. With 4 to 6 lamps one controller VE121F is fixed at the wall. A junction box with 3 outlets placed in the vicinity of the controller makes connection to heat lamps possible. If more than 6 heat lamps VE121 combines with VE181, which can handle up to 10 lamps. The two controllers communicate using a bus cable.

100-130 Volt supply: Arrange the electrical supply to get 208, 220 or 240 Volt supply, the controllers can also work with two phases as supply.

Mechanical lifting

At the wall at each pen a pulley is fixed to the wall using a special hook 2 to 2.5 meter above floor. If the canopy width is more than 2.5 meter, two pulleys are necessary. A solid tempered stainless steel wire connects the pulley, max. length 20 meter. The solid wire is connected to the ram using a flexible stainless steel wire running over pulleys with big wheels. The ram can pull 600 kg and has a stroke of 600 mm. In big rooms several rams run parallel, the sum of pens and rams cannot exceed 85.

In cases with a row of pens with no wall for fixing, a flat ceiling with a wood member bolted to the rafters and frames can be the support for the pulleys.
If the ceiling is not useable a supportive wooden beam eventually supported by some heavier poles has to be in place. The beam also can serve as fixing points for the controllers with suspension rails and guidance for electrical power and bus cables.
 

Main Controller

At the wall in the corridor one VE91 power supply for each three rams with heavy load is placed. Besides a main controller VE108, this can service up to 8 rooms but maximum 85 pens plus rams. If the number of pens exceed 120, a separate data network is required. The data nets are electrically independent. You can have several VE108 at the same net, even one per room if desired.

Lying boards

VengSystem can provide lying boards made to custom. The boards are 12 mm thick and are so heavy that pigs do not move it. They have adequate insulating capability; stand the pigs and power washer. They have handles for easy sliding in hot season.

Dunging

With the introduction of lying boards and partly slatted floor the behaviour of the pigs get important. This is particular important from week 3-4 and onwards, where the heat is off and the canopy is fully lifted. Set the ambient temperature so the pigs rest at the lying board or solid floor. If it gets warmer than set for, then the ventilation system must assure that the pigs feel cooler lying at the lying board than somewhere else. A shower system has reduced dunging problems by 75 %. The shower system gives the pigs the opportunity to cool themselves without having to lie in the dunging zone.

 

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