Monitoring techniques of indoor air quality and animal behaviour in pig farming



Ammonia (NH3) and carbon-dioxide (CO2) are two major gaseous pollutants in pig production. High concentration of Foto Zhuangthe gases can be harmful to animal health & welfare. In addition, pig barns are  enriched with other air pollutants such as greenhouse gases, odour and particle matters. The emission process interacts closely with ventilation processes and animal production processes. Sufficient monitoring of all three processes is important for evaluating farm management schemes. Nonetheless, there is a lack of a suitable on-farm tool to continuously monitor NH3 due to the physicochemical property of the gas and the complexity of air composition inside pig stables. Standard practices of NH3 measurement are either inefficient or too costly. Low-cost sensors are normally unconsidered due to inaccuracy. An affordable yet reliable solution for on-farm usage still needs to be developed. On the other hand, many modern sensor techonologies have been applied to measure animal behaviour, but very few is capable of generic behaviroual observation. Indoor positioning systems is gradually become available for farm animals. The usefulness of such system is however not fully clear.

Research Objectives

Monitor indoor air quality and animal behaviour & welfare using off-the-shelf sensors and investigate the relationship amongst the two aspects and different ventilation regimes in pig farms.

  • Design, calibrate and evaluate a measurement system for monitoring NH3 emission and CO2 distribution
  • Evaluate an indoor positioning system for monitoring animal behaviour and health condition
  • Identify the effect of ventilation on air quality and farm animals


  • Construct, calibrate and test a gas monitoring system in laboratory condition
  • Validate the developed gas monitoring system for continuous measurement in a pig farm and compare the performance with high-end gas analysers
  • Evaluate the performance of identifying animal behaviour and health condition with position data using long term recordings in pigs and data driven approach
  • Statistically identify the relationship between ventilation regime, air quality and behaviour & welfare of pigs.


  • Ammonia (NH3)
  • Gas sensor
  • Indoor positioning system
  • Animal behaviour
  • Animal welfare



Financiering: ILVO

Projectduur: 04.01.2016 – 31.12.2019