46th TWC, Tob. Work. Conf., 2014, abstr. 43

Curing efficiency studies with Bulk-Tobac systems in South Carolina

Clemson University, Pee Dee Research and Education Center, 2200 Pocket Road, Florence, SC 29506-9706, USA

The objective of this study was to compare the efficiency of Bulk-Tobac tobacco curing systems in South Carolina. Studies were conducted on different barn types at two locations over two years. At location 1, three DeCloet barns were used for comparison; while at location 2, two Long barns were used. At location 1, Bulk-Tobac heat exchangers and burners were located in Bulk-Tobac barns , while at location 2 the Bulk-Tobac heat exchangers and burners were located in the Long barns. All barns were equipped with automatic damper controls and a gas meter . The Bulk-Tobac barns required AL 425-25 meters, while the check barns needed an AL-425-10 meter to measure propane usage There were 2-10 cures of tobacco in each barn at location 1, while there were 5 cures in each barn at location 2. All barns were uniformly loaded with similar tobaccos. At location 2 all barns were eight box barns, while at location 1 the Bulk-Tobac barns had 10 DeCloet boxes while the DeCloets had 10-12 boxes. Comparisons were made on fuel usage and pounds cured leaf per gallon of fuel used. At location 1 propane usage was 350 gallons per cure for the Bulk-Tobac barns compared to 333 gallons for the DeCloet barns. Cured leaf per gallon of propane was 7.23 lbs per gallon for the Bulk-Tobac barns compared to 8.18 for the DeCloet barns. At location 2 the Bulk-Tobac’s proved superior to the Long barnes with a fuel usage of 194 gallons per cure and a an efficiency of 16.6 lbs per gallon compared to 280 gallons of propane and a curing efficiency of 11.4 lbs per gallon of fuel used for the check barns. In summary it appears that the Bulk-Tobac system performs satisfactorily. (Reprinted with permission)