DEVELOPMENT OF A MONITORING SYSTEM TO ASSESS THE INTERNAL ENVIRONMENT OF BAGGED GRAIN IN STORAGE

Michael A. Omodara, Michael D. Montross, Samuel G. McNeill, Michael P. Sama, Doug E. Carr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Most farmers in African countries produce small amounts of grain per season and use polypropylene bags for grain storage. Little published information is available on the temperature and moisture change of bagged grain even though high losses are observed. Commercially available moisture meters are expensive and not suitable for providing realtime information on the condition of bagged grain. A monitoring system was developed to assess the internal environment of bagged grain stored in warehouses. The system has eight on-board integrated temperature and relative humidity sensors connected to a custom Arduino-based data acquisition system which recorded a time stamp, temperature, and relative humidity onto a microSD card. Four units were deployed in two warehouses in Nigeria from 3 May 2019 to 9 September 2019. There were 54 bags of corn in Ilorin, and 4000 bags of paddy rice in Tede. Average monthly temperatures recorded at various locations in the warehouse were significantly different (p<0.05). The errors in temperature and relative humidity measurement were 0.2°C and 3.7%, respectively. Equilibrium moisture content of bagged corn and paddy increased by 1.1 and 1.2 percentage points (wet basis), respectively. Data acquired by the system can be used to monitor the condition of bagged grain and detect potential spoilage. This system would help warehouse managers make informed decisions to reduce storage losses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)387-394
Number of pages8
JournalApplied Engineering in Agriculture
Volume38
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors appreciate; USDA-NIFA for funding this research work under the Multistate project 1002344, NSPRI and AFEX for releasing their facilities for this work; staff of postharvest engineering department of NSPRI for monitoring the work and Hon. Egbeleke of OSADEP for his assistance in providing logistic support at the warehouse in Tede, Oyo state Nigeria.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers.

Keywords

  • EMC
  • Grain bag storage
  • Loss management
  • Moisture
  • Resilience
  • Temperature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering (all)

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