Manure application and ammonia volatilization

Research output: Thesisinternal PhD, WU


Keywords: manure application, ammonia volatilization, environmental conditions, application technique, incorporation technique, draught force, work organization, costs Livestock manure applied on farmland is an important source of ammonia (NH3) volatilization, and NH3 is a major atmospheric pollutant. The need arose for more quantitative knowledge about NH3 volatilization and for practical tools to reduce the NH3 volatilization from manure. A database of field measurements was analysed to identify factors that effect the volatilization of NH3 from manure applied by various techniques on grassland and arable land. The analyses showed that NH3 volatilization is substantially reduced by application techniques like narrow band application and shallow injection, and by effective manure incorporation techniques. Also the manure composition, the application rate and the weather conditions substantially influenced the NH3 volatilization rate. Draught force required for different application techniques on grassland varied considerably. The design of the shallow injection element, the working depth and soil circumstances had a substantial influence on the required draught force. For the trailing foot a lower draught force was required than for shallow injection. On arable land the time-lag between application and incorporation of the manure substantially affected the total NH3 volatilization. The costs of application techniques designed to reduce NH3 volatilization were assessed across a range of farm characteristics, and compared with the conventional technique of broadcast spreading. The results of the study supply sound and workable guidelines for the application and incorporation of manure to farmers and policy makers.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Wageningen University
  • Metz, Jos, Promotor
  • Speelman, L., Promotor
  • Hofstee, Jan Willem, Co-promotor
Award date15 Oct 2003
Place of PublicationWageningen
Print ISBNs9789058089373
Publication statusPublished - 2003


  • manures
  • animal manures
  • application methods
  • ammonia
  • volatilization
  • emission
  • reduction

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