Warmer weather in late August and early September has helped, but potential exists for the possibility of more artificial crop drying than has been common lately. With LP gas prices also up this fall, questions have come up about fuel requirements for drying.
LP gas requirements for high-temperature drying depend on many factors including dryer design (grain depth thickness, airflow, drying temperature, heat recovery), dryer maintenance, grain moisture range, outdoor temperature, and relative humidity.
LP gas required for drying can vary from 0.01 to 0.025 gal/bu/pt. Average use by Iowa farm dryers may be about 0.018 gal/bu/pt. Using the average value, one gallon of LP gas would dry about 5 to 6 bu of corn if 10 percentage points of moisture was to be removed. Depending on the amount of moisture to be removed and other conditions, actual requirements can vary markedly from this (e.g., 2 to 11 bushels dried per gallon of LP gas).
This article originally appeared on page 110 of the IC-492(20) -- September 13, 2004 issue.