Colostrum or (automatically) separated milk can be collected in one of the four Milk for Use (M4Use) buckets. In the management program Horizon, milk separation directions can be set, Manage - Milk - General milking - Separation milk destination or Colostrum milk destination.
The Astronaut automatically separates the milk into a bucket. Empty buckets are being filled in order from position 1 - 4 (left to right, unless installed differently by a technician.)
In the following steps, the daily actions that should be executed by the operator to maintain a clean M4Use system and buckets are described:
Press the 'Bucket' icon to open the M4Use info screen. This button is displayed in the corner down below on the left side. A red badge shows on this button to indicate the amount of M4Use buckets that are filled.
The E-link M4Use info screen shows:
Quantity of separated milk
Reason for milk separation
Consult the milk separation task or M4Use task in Horizon to find more detailed information about the separated milk in the M4Use.
Open the M4Use cover. Take the bucket out of the frame and examine the milk quality. Use the milk to feed your calves or throw it away. Pre-rinse the empty buckets with cold water (please be aware that the temperature of the water should not exceed 37 °C, the milk proteins will adhere to the surface of parts of the buckets and create a deposit that is difficult to remove. Thereafter, clean the empty buckets with hot water, a brush and sanitizer every time after using them. After cleaning, post rinse with cold water and put the buckets back into the rack. After emptying out and cleaning your buckets, press 'Empty all', or 'Empty' for a single bucket.
The next step for the operator is to clean the buckets and the nozzles of the M4Use by using the M4Use flush. To start the M4Use flush, press the 'Start M4Use flush' button. During the M4Use flush, filled buckets with milk will not be rinsed.
After the flush is started, put the robot out of operation. You can use this time to perform daily operator routines, such as cleaning the robot arm. Putting the robot out of operation will ensure that after the M4Use flush no accidental milk separation will end up in the sewer when all buckets are still full. The M4Use flush will fill the empty buckets with lukewarm water (result of a cold-water pre-rinse, hot water with chemicals to clean lines and nozzles, cold water post rinse that takes approximately 6 minutes).
Clean the buckets and empty the cleaning water out. After the cleaning, rinse the buckets manually with cold water, so the buckets are not contaminated with cleaning water residue.
Please note, it is not advised to perform a M4Use flush within an hour before a cluster cleaning, to make sure the cleaning water has the optimal temperature during the cluster cleaning.
Perform the flush at least once per day.
Clean the M4Use cover daily to maintain a good hygiene. Do not place the buckets back in the frame before cleaning, so no dirty water or dirt can fall into the buckets.
When all M4Use buckets are full, milk will be sent to milk direction 'Sewer'.
Place the clean buckets back at the empty positions in the rack and close the cover.
Confirm emptying the bucket(s) for empty bucket positions on the E-Link by pushing 'Empty all and close'. After this you can put the Astronaut back in operation.
Tip: the maximum volume of a bucket is 20 liters (5 gallons). If this is too much (or too heavy), the max volume can edited on the E-Link. To edit the maximum amount of milk that a bucket may contain, go to Settings - Milk Procedure - Milk Separation - M4Use bucket size