As our markets led us into the need for year around production of pigs, we knew we needed a central farrowing house to supplement or replace our pasture production practice which restricted us to fall and spring production only. And we needed to solve the problem of keeping the mother sow comfortable with her piglets in the heat of summer if we were going to farrow in summer. Farrowing in crates, which strictly control the movement of the sow, are distasteful to us as they frustrate natural behavior. We knew we would use strawed pens in our new building.
We decided on a geothermal application. See the pictures for the below floor layout of the water pipes. This is a very simple version which cycles water through deep underground pipes, cooling it to sixty degrees in summer. This tempered water then is pumped through the underfloor pipes shown which cools a portion of the floor to around seventy degrees, well within a pig's comfort zone.