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Ensiling whole-plant material with moisture contents over 65% in tower silos leads to saturation of the silage in the bottom portion of the silo. This results in an outflow of silage juice, loss of nutrients and, for sealed silos, high lateral wall pressures. It is necessary to be able to predict the seepage losses from the saturated zone in tower silos. This requires a better understanding of the effluent-producing process. The hypothesis that the amount of juice pressed from the silage after saturation is a linear function of the volume change was used to derive a linear relationship between the volume of juice expressed per unit of silage mass and the natural logarithm of die ratio of the dry matter density of the silage to the dry matter density at apparent saturation. The factor of proportionality is a material constant, k. Twenty-one isotropic triaxial consolidation tests were carried out to measure the volume of juice expressed at various densities of alfalfa and whole-plant com silages. Fifty-six other consolidation tests carried out by Nilsson in Sweden provided similar information for grass, whole-plant com and beet pulp silages. The results of these tests were used to find values for the constant k. It was found to range from 0.435 to 0.576 m3/t.
juice flow from silages
Tang, J., Jofriet, J.C. and B. LeLievre 1988. JUICE FLOW FROM SILAGES. Canadian Agricultural Engineering 30(1):99-106.
99 - 106