The application of animal manure is subject to strict regulations and farmers want to continuously improve the efficiency of the manure application process, resulting in minimal waste and higher productivity. Bomech builds so-called trailing foot slurry injectors for this purpose. These technically sophisticated machines can spread manure up to a working width of 36 metres and are packed with rubber components.
Livestock manure flows from a slurry tank to the Alrena exact distributor, which eventually redistributes the manure to the various hose outlets. Through these hoses, the manure flows to the discharge rubbers on the ground. To close off the hoses individually, hose valves are fitted on the machine. Bomech tested all standard solutions in the market, but they met the quality requirements. In the end, Bomech and RIS took up the challenge together to develop the best hose valve.
The development started with jointly determining the boundary conditions such as available installation space, minimum service life, which control system we are going to use and in what conditions the hose valves should work. Then RIS started drawing and various options were worked out, which we tested via our FEM software. These simulations enable us to gain insight into the functioning of the product without having physically made it. This allows us to develop products quickly and at low cost before making the physical moulds needed for production.
After Bomech and RIS agreed on the chosen design, the trial moulds were made and we produced a first series of hose valves to test internally. The outcome of this test period was positive which allowed us to move to the next phase, field testing. In use, the hose valves also turned out to do what had been simulated beforehand in the FEM software. However, the wish arose to make the hose valves shorter so that less installation space was needed and we could save material. These wishes were taken into account when making the series production moulds that were needed now that the design was ready to go to market. Meanwhile, thousands of hose valves have been made by RIS and fitted to Bomech’s trailing foot slurryers. And these machines are driving in fields all over north-western Europe.
WHAT IS A HOSE VALVE?
The Alrena Section Control System (ASC) is an advanced system that offers precision in slurry application. ASC hose valves allow individual hose exits or pre-programmed sections to be easily switched on or off. The system uses a two-chamber system, keeping manure and air separated at all times. ASC can be widely applied, including retrofit options, and is suitable for both new and existing manure manifolds, regardless of brand. Alrena has obtained a patent on the hose valve, protecting the unique and innovative features of the design.
The Alrena ASC system offers several advantages, including minimal wear and tear, complete sealing of the inner tube and easy installation. It can be operated via a central switching system, an Alrena control box or integration with existing tank controls. The system has been tested in both field and endurance tests and can optionally be supplied with a new Alrena control with touchscreen. The ASC system allows farm engineers to improve the precision and efficiency of the manure application process, resulting in minimal waste and increased productivity.
After the success of the Alrena Section Control System (ASC), both parties are very satisfied with the cooperation. As a result, it was decided to expand the cooperation further and work is currently underway on a larger hose valve for pipe diameter Ø50mm.
Other rubber products are also now being made by RIS with which we try to support Bomech as much as possible in making top-quality trailing foot slurryers.