Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Experts find better way to scrub milking hardware

Researchers at Penn State have devised a novel way to clean and disinfect milking equipment, using little more than salt water. The new method could be a safer and cheaper alternative to conventional cleaning systems.

"Concentrated chemicals used in the conventional cleaning are stored on the farm and on contact, they can cause serious burns in the eyes and on skin," says Dr. Ali Demirci, associate professor of agricultural and biological engineering. And, he says the chemicals are also expensive.

Most farms across the United States use some form of mechanized system to milk cows. The set-up basically comprises a rubber-lined suction cup that milks the cow and transfers the milk to a central refrigerating tank, through a series of pipes.

At day’s end, the whole system is cleaned in a four-step process: first the pipes are rinsed with warm water to remove the milk. Then they are flushed with a chlorinated detergent at high temperature to remove soils such as fat and protein deposits, and then with a weak acid to neutralize the detergent and remove mineral deposits.

Finally, the pipes have to be sanitized with an EPA-registered sanitizing agent before they can be used again.

Demirci and his colleagues tried to clean the milk pipes using electrolyzed oxidizing water, as other researchers had shown its effectiveness in cleaning fresh produce, eggs, etc.

Electrolyzed oxidizing water is created when electric current flowing through two electrodes – immersed in a weak salt solution and separated by a membrane – produces an alkaline and an acidic solution.

"It is not as expensive as the detergents, and can be made with just a little bit of salt and water," says Demirci, whose findings are published in the December 2005 issue of Transactions of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers.

To test how the new cleaning agent measured up to conventional detergent, the researchers flushed warm milk laden with bacteria down a series of pipes set up to mimic the system on a farm, and they compared the cleaning power of both in turns.

Results showed that in between 7.5 to 10 minutes, the electrolyzed oxidizing water was as effective in removing organic matter from the pipes, as conventional treatments.

"It is not harmful to the skin, and much cheaper. The alkaline detergent and acidic rinse in conventional systems of cleaning can be replaced with this water," says Demirci.

Other researchers include Stephen P. Walker, graduate student; Robert E. Graves, professor in the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering; Stephen B. Spencer, professor emeritus in the Department of Dairy and Animal Science; and Robert F. Roberts, associate professor in the Department of Food Science, all at Penn State.

Amitabha Avasthi | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Earlier flowering of modern winter wheat cultivars
20.03.2018 | Georg-August-Universität Göttingen

nachricht Algorithm could streamline harvesting of hand-picked crops
13.03.2018 | University of Illinois College of Engineering

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Mars' oceans formed early, possibly aided by massive volcanic eruptions

Oceans formed before Tharsis and evolved together, shaping climate history of Mars

A new scenario seeking to explain how Mars' putative oceans came and went over the last 4 billion years implies that the oceans formed several hundred million...

Im Focus: Tiny implants for cells are functional in vivo

For the first time, an interdisciplinary team from the University of Basel has succeeded in integrating artificial organelles into the cells of live zebrafish embryos. This innovative approach using artificial organelles as cellular implants offers new potential in treating a range of diseases, as the authors report in an article published in Nature Communications.

In the cells of higher organisms, organelles such as the nucleus or mitochondria perform a range of complex functions necessary for life. In the networks of...

Im Focus: Locomotion control with photopigments

Researchers from Göttingen University discover additional function of opsins

Animal photoreceptors capture light with photopigments. Researchers from the University of Göttingen have now discovered that these photopigments fulfill an...

Im Focus: Surveying the Arctic: Tracking down carbon particles

Researchers embark on aerial campaign over Northeast Greenland

On 15 March, the AWI research aeroplane Polar 5 will depart for Greenland. Concentrating on the furthest northeast region of the island, an international team...

Im Focus: Unique Insights into the Antarctic Ice Shelf System

Data collected on ocean-ice interactions in the little-researched regions of the far south

The world’s second-largest ice shelf was the destination for a Polarstern expedition that ended in Punta Arenas, Chile on 14th March 2018. Oceanographers from...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Industry & Economy
Event News

Virtual reality conference comes to Reutlingen

19.03.2018 | Event News

Ultrafast Wireless and Chip Design at the DATE Conference in Dresden

16.03.2018 | Event News

International Tinnitus Conference of the Tinnitus Research Initiative in Regensburg

13.03.2018 | Event News

Latest News

Physicists made crystal lattice from polaritons

20.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Mars' oceans formed early, possibly aided by massive volcanic eruptions

20.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Thawing permafrost produces more methane than expected

20.03.2018 | Earth Sciences

Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>