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Open AccessArticle

An Innovative System for Maize Cob and Wheat Chaff Harvesting: Simultaneous Grain and Residues Collection

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Consiglio per la Ricerca in Agricotura e l’Analisi dell’Economia Agraria (CREA), Centro di Ricerca Ingegneria e Trasformazioni Agroalimentari, 24047 Milan, Italy
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Consiglio per la Ricerca in Agricotura e l’Analisi dell’Economia Agraria (CREA), Centro di Ricerca Ingegneria e Trasformazioni Agroalimentari, 00015 Rome, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Energies 2020, 13(5), 1265; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13051265
Received: 14 February 2020 / Revised: 26 February 2020 / Accepted: 3 March 2020 / Published: 9 March 2020
Maize and wheat are two of the most widespread crops worldwide because of their high yield and importance for food, chemical purposes and livestock feed. Some of the residues of these crops (i.e., maize cob and wheat chaff) remain in the field after grain harvesting. In Europe, just maize cob and grain chaff could provide an annual potential biomass of 9.6 Mt and 54.8 Mt, respectively. Collecting such a biomass could be of interest for bioenergy production and could increase farmers’ income. Progress in harvest technology plays a key role in turning untapped by-products into valuable feedstocks. This article presents a study of the performance and the quality of the work of Harcob, an innovative system developed for maize cob collection. Furthermore, the feasibility of using the Harcob system to also harvest wheat chaff during wheat harvesting was also verified. The results showed that it was possible to harvest 1.72 t ha−1 and 0.67 t ha−1 of cob and chaff, respectively, without affecting the harvesting performance of the combine. The profit achievable from harvesting the corn cob was around 4%, while no significant economic benefits were observed during the harvesting of wheat chaff with the Harcob system. The use of cereal by-products for energy purposes may allow the reduction of CO2 from fossil fuel between 0.7 to 2.2 t CO2 ha−1. The Harcob system resulted suitable to harvest such different and high potential crop by-products and may represent a solution for farmers investing in the bioenergy production chain. View Full-Text
Keywords: bioenergy; crop by-products; harvesting methods; maize cob; wheat chaff; combine harvesting bioenergy; crop by-products; harvesting methods; maize cob; wheat chaff; combine harvesting
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MDPI and ACS Style

Bergonzoli, S.; Suardi, A.; Rezaie, N.; Alfano, V.; Pari, L. An Innovative System for Maize Cob and Wheat Chaff Harvesting: Simultaneous Grain and Residues Collection. Energies 2020, 13, 1265. https://doi.org/10.3390/en13051265

AMA Style

Bergonzoli S, Suardi A, Rezaie N, Alfano V, Pari L. An Innovative System for Maize Cob and Wheat Chaff Harvesting: Simultaneous Grain and Residues Collection. Energies. 2020; 13(5):1265. https://doi.org/10.3390/en13051265

Chicago/Turabian Style

Bergonzoli, Simone; Suardi, Alessandro; Rezaie, Negar; Alfano, Vincenzo; Pari, Luigi. 2020. "An Innovative System for Maize Cob and Wheat Chaff Harvesting: Simultaneous Grain and Residues Collection" Energies 13, no. 5: 1265. https://doi.org/10.3390/en13051265

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