Recently, global issues concerning energy and environment have been the subjects for discussions. Moreover, several related programs are undertaken for the promotion of using worldwide biomass resources in response to the issue. In this paper the concept to overcome a global tetralemma consisting of four issues such as population, food, energy and environment is discussed from the viewpoint of agricultural engineering based on the proposal of using "Rice" which can certainly contribute a lot as one of the key resources to cover at least three of the issues of food, energy and environment simultaneously. The possibility of using Rice for bio-ethanol production is also discussed from the viewpoint of improving the situations of two issues of energy and environment in global tetralemma
In this paper, the common and different features of the agricultural background in East Asia and EU will be reviewed. And as one of the common research topics in agriculture, the livestock farming will be taken, and the recent research topics in behavioural science of domestic animal will be introduced. The fundamental idea is that animal can be considered as the intelligent biosensor as well as the actuator that takes the information from the environment, processes the information to intelligence and responds against the environment, using central nervous system. Therefore, it may be very important and interesting research topics from the practical as well as academic viewpoints to understand the animal behavior with the computer for mechanization for animal breeding.
Certain agricultural work requires a very stiff robot arm to reduce vibration and damage to products. However, the structure of conventional articulated robots tends to be too weak to manipulate heavy objects, such as melons and watermelons. The Stewart platform is a typical parallel robotic mechanism with very high stiffness, but this advantage is balanced by a small workspace and large installation space. This research proposes a new type of agricultural robot arm constructed by combining a parallel and a serial mechanism. This robot consists of a hybrid manipulator, a robot controller and an end-effector. The hybrid manipulator has serial joints with two extra degrees of freedom, making the workspace wider. It was also designed to harvest heavy fruits such as melons, even from behind obstacles such as leaves or tree branches. Position control results of the developed hybrid robot showed that it could be controlled within a ±1mm and ±0.2° range of error.
In this study, the main effort was to determine the effects of the extruder's operating conditions on the physical, mechanical and chemical properties of corn/PVA extrudates. The operating conditions were feed compositions (FC; food grade corn grit, feeding grade corn grit), screw threads (ST; single, double), screw pitches (SP; narrow (3.5 mm), intermediate (5.0 mm), wide (6.5 mm)), and screw speeds (SS; 50 rpm, 60 rpm, 70 rpm). The experiment was a 2×2×3×3 factorial design. Samples of each treatment were collected and the physical, mechanical and chemical properties were measured and analyzed using the PROC ANOVA and PROC CORR of the SAS 6.0 software package. Experimental results indicated that: screw thread, feed composition, and screw pitch had a most significant effect on the radial expansion ratio and compressibility; whereas, screw speed had a most significant effect on the longitudinal expansion, water absorption index and compressibility, respectively.
Chitinous materials are important sources for many bio-medical applications; and the process monitoring is a key factor for better quality control of chitosan production. In this study, chitin and chitosan in suspension form were analyzed using near infrared (NIR) spectroscopy. Two models including multiple linear regression (MLR) and modified partial least square regression (MPLSR) were adopted for studying the degree of deacetylation (DD) of chitinous materials in order to assure a better quality monitoring and control for chitosan production. During the process of the deacetylation, the real-time measurements of suspension were conducted. The MPLSR model with second derivative spectra in the range of 600-1000 and 1400-1500 nm yielded the best results, which were rc = 0.991, SEC = 0.019, RESC = 1.4%, rp = 0.990, SEP = 0.022, RSEP = 3.4%, RPD = 9.4. The NIR measurements of DD status of chitinous suspension could be achieved by using either MLR or MPLSR model developed in this study. It provides great application potentials to the real-time and on-line inspection for the quality monitoring and control of the chitosan production during deacetylation process.
A side-discharge mid-mower attached to a 22 kW-powered tractor (Tongyangmoolsan Co. Ltd., T-300) was developed. Relationships between rotating velocity of a blade and the wind velocity at the outlet of the mid-mower, the required power to operate the mid-mower, cutting and discharging conditions relative to height of lawn, and working speed were tested. Results showed that the proper height and width of the outlet were at 195 mm and 520 mm, respectively. Reliable cutting height of lawn was about 100 mm with blades having bended angles greater than 20°. The torque limit at mid-PTO of the tractor was about 270 Nm and the required maximum torque for mowing was about 223 Nm. Therefore, the mid-PTO of the tractor has 17% more torque available than the maximum torque of the mid-PTO for mowing. The total PTO power requirement to propel the mid-mower was 8 - 10 kW at a working speed of 7 km/hr and 1.8m width of the mower. The field capacity of the prototype mid-mower attached to the tractor (22Kw) was about 1.26 ha/hr. Consequently, the prototype mid-mower was fully compatible with a small tractor.
The publisher of "Engineering in Agriculture, Environment and Food (EAEF)" will change from J-Stage (JST) to Elsevier Ltd. on January 1, 2014. New issues after Vol.7 will be browsed on ScienceDirect, whereas Vol.1-6 can be still browsed on J-Stage.
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