AP (Automated Production Systems) is launching advanced new heating, feeding and ventilation equipment used in pork production.
VariFlame variable rate heater
VariFlame is the industry’s first modulating heater that can work with any control system in the world. It seamlessly synchronizes and adjusts with the temperature curves set in the controller to maintain desired room temperature.
Brian Rieck, AP product manager, said VariFlame connected to AP’s EDGE™ controller also provides remote access, giving producers control of their heaters and many other inputs from a single system. “Producers can access diagnostics and adjust barn settings remotely from any web-enabled device,” he said.
Other unique features of VariFlame connected to EDGE include:
- LED temperature probes, which provide flexibility to not only operate the heater, but also control curtains, fans and other equipment.
- Stir-fan mode, which allows producers to continue circulating air through the heater without turning on the burner as the animals grow and the heater is no longer needed. “This additional circulation of air is ideal for maintaining optimal and uniform environmental conditions,” Rieck said. “It also provides an alternative use for the heater so it’s not sitting idle during the warm months.”
- Exercise mode, which allows EDGE to automatically turn on the heater at scheduled times to ensure it fires up correctly and remains in good working order.
Other features available on all VariFlame models support improved performance, durability and ease of use. For example, Rieck noted that most variable rate heaters range from 65,000 to 250,000 BTUs. “VariFlame has an extended range, from 55,000 to 250,000 BTUs, which not only allows the heater to run longer, but also provides improved heat distribution and humidity control,” he said. “Even while operating at lower BTUs, the burner maintains consistent ignition reliability and flame stability.”
He added that VariFlame is the industry’s first all-stainless steel heater, making it the most durable and corrosion-resistant heater on the market. Easier maintenance is another benefit, since VariFlame is the first heater featuring a single, easy-to-remove door that allows producers to easily access all serviceable parts from a single location. In addition, every aspect of the heater can be serviced using a single tool – a ¼ inch nut driver.
HI2LO™ Wet/Dry Feeder
AP’s new HI2LO Wet/Dry Feeder is the only feeder on the market that has individualized trough space and nipples, allowing each hog to mix its optimal feed-to-water ratio. It is also the first feeder with double adjustment capabilities, enabling producers to adjust the shelf height and feed gate as pigs grow bigger. “HI2LO is the only wet/dry feeder tailored to serve the individual feeding preferences of your hogs,” said Rieck.
Other features include:
- Built-in weep holes for each individual trough space to eliminate flooding potential.
- “A” shaped shelf design and built-in agitator to help prevent feed clogging.
- Built-in hopper extension, allowing up to 450 pounds of feed capacity on the three hole feeder without paying for additional add-ons.
- Auto-flow control nipples to regulate water flow, regardless of barn water pressure.
Positive pressure ventilation
AP is also introducing a positive pressure ventilation system to help keep viruses out of a barn. Air is pushed into a building, instead of pulling it out, which is the case with negative pressure ventilation systems. The benefit of positive pressure is that barns don’t have to be completely sealed for the highest level of protection against viruses. This ventilation style slightly pressurizes the building, forcing inside air out through any crack or joint.
These new technologies debuted at the 2016 World Pork Expo June 8-10 in Des Moines. For more information, producers can contact their local AP dealer or visit www.automatedproduction.com.