Factors affecting forage chopper performance
International Agricultural Engineering Journal
Department of Agricultural and Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Technology, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria
The performance of a forage chopper is greatly dependent on some factors such as cutting knife angle, knife edge thickness etc. Therefore, in this work the effect of some factors (operating time and moisture) on forage chopper performance were determined. Moisture contents of the samples forage (Guinea grass-24.4%, 23.3%, 20.0% (wb), Siam weed-21.4%, 16.6%, 13.3% (wb) and Maize Stover-42%, 30%, 23% (wb)) were determined by oven-drying method. The machine was tested using Philippine Agricultural Engineering Standard at Department of Agricultural an Environmental Engineering in September, 2014. Effects of moisture content and operating time (Independent variables) on chopping efficiency, chopping capacity and length of cut of the machine were analysed using response surface design expert of 6.0.6 model. Responses were chopping capacity, chopping efficiency and length of cut. The results of the statistical analysis showed that, moisture content and operating time had significant effects (p<0.05) on the chopping capacities at 5% significant level while their effects on efficiencies were not significant at 5% significant level due to the cutting knife parameters of the machine. Moreover, the length of cut increased with the increase in moisture content but the effect was not significant. The chopping capacity, efficiency and length of cut are functions of the mechanical, physical properties of the material chopped and the cutting knife parameters of the machine.
Agriculture; Efficiency; Moisture; Moisture determination; Cutting knives; Guinea grass; Independent variables; Knife edge; Operating time; Oven drying method; Response surface designs; Siam weeds; Agricultural machinery