What is a Grain Silo?

Grain silo is a structure built to store cereals in bulk, also named grain storage silo. Grain silos can be designed in the form of domes, large elongated bags or warehouses, but most are tall and cylindrical. They are widely used to hold seed, grain, silage or other kinds of cereals. Silage refers to fodder which is harvested green and need to be stored in a grain silo to ferment, such as maize, oats, sorghum, alfalfa or grass. Then, these fodders could be used as bio-fuel or to feed livestock.

Bag Silos

Bag Silo

Tower silo, bunker silo, and bag silo are the three most common types of grain silo. Among these three types, bag silo is the cheapest storage solution. They are made out of a durable plastic generally 6-8 feet in diameter, and the length is limitless. When the grain is needed, farmers usually use a sharp object to tear the plastic. The main features of bag silo are low requirements, low maintenance, low costs and its ease of access.

Bunker Silos

Bunker Silos

Bunker silos seem like a pit in the ground. When the silo is filled with grain, a large plastic tarp and rocks are used to cover the mound of the grain to protect the grain against wind. In some cases, concrete walls are built around for protection. Bunker silos need little upkeep and are also low in price.

Tower Silos

Concrete Tower Silo

The most common storage solution of grain is tower silo. The high of tower silo can be up to 84 meters and there are concrete tower silos, metal tower silos and steel tower silos. In tower silo, gravity is used to distribute and pack the grain. The fatal flaw of tower silo is deterioration when used to hold high acidic materials such as silage, since acid could weaken the walls of the silo.

Steel Grain Silos

The most popular way of grain storage is steel grain silos, a kind of advanced storage solutions. It is made of high strength stainless steel plate which corrosion resisting, acid-resisting, and can be hermetically sealed.

Steel Grain Silos