McLanahan Corporation – Sand Separation

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McLanahan Corporation – Sand Separation


About the Company:

McLanahan Corporation provides complete manure management solutions for the agricultural industry. McLanahan’s custom engineered systems help dairies minimize the challenges of manure handling with safer, simpler and smarter solutions.

About the Solution:

Sand-Manure Separators (SMS) produce a clean, recyclable product that can be used for bedding dairy cows, as well as producing a nearly sand-free manure effluent. An SMS is most often placed in a Sand Separation System for dairy producers who want to avoid the challenges traditionally associated with handling sand and manure.McLanahan Sand-Manure Separators can be operated in conjunction with anaerobic digester systems without substantial difficulties. Anaerobic digestion systems require very high sand removal and any sand bypass can become problematic. McLanahan has been successfully operating SMS Systems with anaerobic digesters for years.

McLanahan Corporation 200 Wall St. Holidaysburg, PA USA 814-695-9807 Visit Company Website

Solution Type

  • Sand Separation


  • Equipment Vendor
  • Others
  • Project Developer


  • Bedding
  • Concentrated Nutrients
  • Fiber

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Solution Strengths, Weaknesses and Critical Indicators

Sand Separation:  

  • Used on Vacuumed/scraped manure and manure slurries with limited water addition
  • Economics can be attractive depending on post-treatment and sand price
  • Dairies that use sand for bedding believe that the sand improves the comfort and productivity of the milking herd
  • Removal of sand particles can save significant wear in down-stream equipment
  • Reusing sand form a separator for bedding can reduce farms total bedding costs
  • Can increase manure volume based on the amount and source of water used for dilution
  • Reused sand must be handled properly to ensure that pathogens and moisture are not reintroduced into the barn

Newtrient Comments/Opinions:

McLanahan Corporation Agricultural Divisions' core product is its sand-manure separator (SMS). Over 100 SMS have been installed on dairy farms in the US since becoming commercially available in 1997. Their SMS system is based on using a mining duty sand cleaning system to harvest sand that has been separated from dairy cow manure. McLanahan's SMS is long lasting due to the use of tempered steel and no moving metal to metal parts. Sand recovery rates can be as high at 95% when concrete sand (ASTM-33) is used for bedding and quality and quality dilution water is used. McLanahan has equipment that is commercially available and has been installed and is function well to develop the requisite dilution water.

Newtrient will continue to work with McLanahan to further refine the cost and performance information as more information comes in with new commercial dairy installations.

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