Hot water system out of ordinary
Southland Farm Services was the main contractor and project manager for the Southern Dairy Hub’s new dairy shed build near Invercargill.
The hub consists of a working research and demonstration dairy farm supporting 800 cows on 348 hectares at Wallacetown.
Southland Farm Services capital sales manager Jeremy Dawson says close collaboration with dairy hub staff and a team of highly experienced contractors resulted in a project the company is proud to have been a part of.
“We were really pleased when we found out we were lucky enough to win the tender,” Jeremy says.
Among the key components of the hub’s rotary dairy shed is DeLaval equipment including a CWC30 snap chill refrigeration unit which enables the fastest possible method of milk cooling.
A feature of the system is its integration with a 600-litre Longveld gas-fired hot water stack.
This was installed instead of a conventional electric hot water cylinder system for cleaning the milking plant and vats.
The stack combines a hot water storage tank and dump tank in one relocatable, compact and secure unit, minimising pipework.
Dairy farmers who have installed the Longveld Stack have reported hot water energy savings of up to 40%.
The model installed at the dairy hub delivers 600 litres of hot water at 85°C in about an hour, but Southland Farm Services and DeLaval have taken the system a step further.
“What we’ve done that’s a bit unique, I guess, is we’ve hooked it up via the heat recovery system of the snap chill unit. “This is something new for us with a gas system.
Southern Dairy Hub wanted to be environmentally friendly with energy consumption,” Jeremy says.
The result is hot water, with a temperature already at 50°C created from the refrigeration system, goes to the Longveld Stack, which then only needs to boost the temperature by 35°C. “That’s obviously a big efficiency saving.”
The dairy hub’s highly specified milking shed includes a comprehensive array of integrated DeLaval components and systems, in addition to DelPro Farm Manager for monitoring, recording and analysing data from different areas of the farm.
Two large television screens in the shed display output from cameras monitoring the yard, drafting gates and the facility’s research area.
Because the farm comprises four 200-cow herds, special consideration was needed to work out how the herds would enter the shed and exit to the correct paddocks. Consequently three backing gates were installed instead of the usual two.
A feature most appreciated by both cows and staff is the DeLaval rotary platform fabricated offsite and installed by CCMP, Balclutha.
The off-site fabrication created efficiencies in the project and the ability for the rotary platform to be installed and completed to the stage of having bales and bum rails in place in about five days.
The platform is constructed of a stainless steel/ alloy composite material, SuperDeck, unique to DeLaval, instead of traditional concrete.
It has a surface of 18mm rubber matting which is quieter and more comfortable for cows to stand on.
“The farm team are very happy with it and with the way the milking plant works. It’s very quiet, with minimal mechanical noise while milking.”