Modelling heat and mass transfer of a broiler house using computational fluid dynamics

Fernando Rojano, Pierre Emmanuel Bournet, Melynda Hassouna, Paul Robin, Murat Kacira, Christopher Y. Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations


Improvements to the living conditions in semi-enclosed spaces such as broiler houses can be achieved by better control of the heat and mass transport that occur in climate and air quality. This study shows that computer-aided modelling, and in particular computational fluid dynamics (CFD), can provide to researchers the ability to integrate the primary forces that interact at the interior environment. A two dimensional CFD model was used to assess the dynamics of a broiler house by investigating sensible and latent heat, as well as mass transport and radiative transfer energy, as these relate to the environment of the broiler house. Validation data related to temperature, absolute humidity and CO2 were collected both inside and outside of a naturally ventilated broiler house. Inside data was logged at various locations to identify the degree of homogeneity throughout space. The CFD model replicated two contrasting cases: an early stage and a late stage of production. The predicted values for temperature, absolute humidity and CO2 were in good agreement with experimental data. For instance, the first case had a ventilation rate of 10 air changes h-1, and obtained a root-mean-square error (RMSE) of 1.0°C, 0.3g[H2O]kg-1 [dry air] and 134ppm for temperature, absolute humidity and CO2, respectively. The second case had ventilation rates of 25 air changes h-1, and obtained a RMSE of 0.9°C and 0.48g[H2O]kg-1 [dry air] for temperature and absolute humidity, respectively.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-38
Number of pages14
JournalBiosystems Engineering
StatePublished - Aug 1 2015


  • CFD modelling
  • CO
  • Henhouse
  • Livestock building
  • Natural ventilation
  • Sensible and latent heat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Soil Science


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