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Device that reduces poultry dust has added benefit. (Update).

An electrostatic system that reduces airborne dust and microorganisms in poultry houses could also help sterilize Salmonella and other pathogenic bacteria in the dust, USDA Agricultural Research Service scientists report.

That is an added benefit of the system developed by ASAE member and ARS scientist Bailey Mitchell who works with the Southeast Poultry Research Lab in Athens, Ga. The system uses an electrostatic charge to trap airborne dust that harbors the organisms.

Since the initial studies in the early 1990s, Mitchell has found in new lab studies that the electrostatic charge seems to show a strong sterilizing effect on both airborne and surface Salmonella and other pathogenic bacteria. The kill rate on airborne and surface Salmonella enteritidis at close range has been 95 percent or more in a research setting.

The system also has reduced biofilms up to 99.8 percent when used at close range. Biofilms are formed by pathogenic bacteria that stick to surfaces and then cover themselves with a protective coating. Scientists are still determining how much electrostatic charge is required to kill airborne and surface Salmonella and other pathogenic bacteria.

Lab studies also show the charge keeps surface dust near its source. For example, loose dust on the floor of a treated room tends not to become airborne, because as soon as it leaves the floor it is charged and attracted back to the floor.

The system was designed to transfer a strong negative electrostatic charge to dust and microorganisms in an enclosed space and collect the charged particles on grounded plates or room surfaces.

The system has reduced Salmonella transmission and other airborne pathogens by 80 to 95 percent in experimental and commercial hatching cabinets. Airborne dust in poultry areas has been reduced up to 95 percent.

For more information, contact Mitchell at 706-5463443, fax 706-546-3161, bmitchell@seprl.usda.gov.
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Title Annotation:electrostatic system also controls airborne pathogens
Publication:Resource: Engineering & Technology for a Sustainable World
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2002
Words:305
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