Design and Development of Site Specific Grape Vineyard Fertilizer Applicator Prototype
The current fertiliser application methods for grape vines are labour intensive and lead to overuse of fertiliser. Frequent rain and vineyard orchard wash over often pollute water sources. Therefore, the right amount and placement of fertiliser can not only improve crop growth but also reduce the risk of chemicals to human health and the environment. To overcome the above problems a site specific fertiliser applicator for grape vineyard with mechanical sensing system was developed. The sensing system was designed to apply fertiliser to the root zone of the plant canopy. An experimental unit was developed to optimise design and operation parameters for fertiliser production per plant. The urea's physical and engineering qualities were determined for metering mechanism design. The average value of bulk density, angle of repose, urea grain diameter, grain weight in single flute measured were 0.759 ± 0.011 gcm−3, 26.22 ± 1.18°, 3.38 ± 0.23 mm, 1.46 ± 0.04 g, respectively. The coefficient of static friction with plywood, galvanised iron and mild steel with painted surface were observed 0.3177 ± 0.0092, 0.2868 ± 0.0077, and 0.3177 ± 0.0092, respectively. For fertiliser given per plant, the effect of exposure length was p < 0.001. The sensor device opens the delivery tube for fertiliser in 0.9–0.95s.
Angle of repose, Bulk density, Green revolution, Mechanical sensing system, Vitaceae
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