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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: POST HARVEST MEASUREMENT AND MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS TO IMPROVE PEANUT QUALITY AND US COMPETITIVENESS

Location: Peanut Research

Title: Bulk Seed Tenders for Handling Peanut Seed

Authors
item Butts, Christopher
item Faircloth, Wilson
item Nuti, Russell
item Rowland, Diane

Submitted to: Georgia Peanut Research Extension Report
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: June 15, 2006
Publication Date: January 15, 2006
Citation: Butts, C.L., Faircloth, W.H., Nuti, R.C., Rowland, D. 2006. Bulk seed tenders for handling peanut seed. Georgia Peanut Research Extension Report. 9-13.

Interpretive Summary: Planting is a very labor intensive operation requiring both skilled and unskilled labor. Intense manual labor is required to load seed hoppers on the planter. A seeding rate of 100 lb/ac, requires 10,000 lb of seed per 100 ac planted. This is equivalent to 216 50-lb bags of seed that must be handled. Bulk seed tenders have been used in the Midwestern United States to plant corn, soybean, and small grains for quite some time. They eliminate the need for strenuous physical labor during the planting operation and reducing the driver fatigue. Bulk handling systems have not been used for peanut seed due to their fragile nature and fear of excessive losses due to mechanical damage. Tests were conducted to measure the mechanical damage to peanut seed due to handling in bags, a belt-type bulk seed tender, and a pneumatic bulk seed tender. Total damage was significantly higher in seed transferred from the bin to the planter using the bulk handling systems. Bagged seed, with no additional handling, had 0.5% total damaged seed. This was significantly lower than the 1.1% and 2.5% damaged using the belt and pneumatic systems, respectively. The average flow rate for the belt system was 234 lb/min compared to 159 lb/min for the pneumatic system. Based on these tests, the bulk handling systems could be used to reduce the time and labor required to fill planters with peanut seed with minimal loss due to mechanical damage. Using the bulk handling systems seeding rates would have to be increased about by about 1-2 lb/ac to compensate for losses due to mechanical damage.

Technical Abstract: Planting is a very labor intensive operation requiring both skilled and unskilled labor. Intense manual labor is required to load seed hoppers on the planter. A seeding rate of 112 kg/ha, requires 11.2 t of seed per 100 ha planted. Bulk seed tenders have been used in the Midwestern United States to plant corn, soybean, and small grains for quite some time. They eliminate the need for strenuous physical labor during the planting operation and reducing the driver fatigue. Bulk handling systems have not been used for peanut seed due to their fragile nature and fear of excessive losses due to mechanical damage. Tests were conducted to measure the mechanical damage to peanut seed due to handling in bags, a belt-type bulk seed tender, and a pneumatic bulk seed tender. Twenty 23-kg bags of treated Georgia Green peanut seed were obtained. Each bag was opened divided into two 11.4-kg samples. A 500-g subsample was retained to determine initial levels of mechanical damage. After all peanut seed were divided and loaded into the bulk seed tenders, each tender was operated and approximately 11.4 kg of peanut seed were loaded into a plastic bucket to simulate loading a seed hopper on a planter. Total weight of peanut seed and the time required to transfer the seed from the bin to the bucket were recorded. Mass flow rate was controlled by opening and closing the gates on the feed hopper. A 500-g subsample was retained from each 11.4-kg sample for analysis. Tests were repeated until all peanut seed had been emptied from the bulk seed bin. Split/broken seed were hand sorted from each of the 500-g subsamples and weighed. Total damage was significantly higher in seed transferred from the bin to the planter using the bulk handling systems. Bagged seed, with no additional handling, had 0.5% total damaged seed. This was significantly lower than the 1.1% and 2.5% damaged using the belt and pneumatic systems, respectively. The average flow rate for the belt system was 106 kg/min compared to 72 kg/min for the pneumatic system.

Last Modified: 9/2/2014
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