Muirin-Aer compost turner increases manure nutrient density

Irish startup Muirin-Aer has built a prototype compost turner designed to aerate farmyard manure and produce a more nutrient-dense product that could help farmers cut back on synthetic fertiliser use.

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The tractor-towed implement features a central rotor with bolt-on tines mounted in an inward-facing spiral formation to direct the material to the centre of the windrow.

Here, the temperature can be as high as 70C, which ensures that weed seeds and unwelcome bacteria are killed off and encourages the aerobic breakdown of manure.

With each turn, both the temperature and mass of the product is reduced, without losing its nutrient value. 

A tractor of at least 100hp is required to work the compost turner via a 540rpm pto, and a creeper gear or variable transmission is also needed to maintain an optimum working speed of 0.2kph.

List price is about £17,000.

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