Several yield monitors are available for use on cotton harvesters, but none are able to maintain yield measurement accuracy across cultivars and field conditions that vary spatially and/or temporally. Thus, the utility of yield monitors as tools for on-farm research is limited unless steps are taken to calibrate the systems as cultivars and conditions change. This technical note details the man-machine-interface software system design portion of a harvester-based yield monitor calibration system for basket-type cotton strippers. The system was based upon the use of pressure sensors to measure the weight of the basket by monitoring the static pressure in the hydraulic lift cylinder circuit. To ensure accurate weighing, the system automatically lifted the basket to a target lift height, allowed basket time to settle, then weighed the contents of the basket. The software running the system was split into two parts that were run on an embedded low-level micro-controller, and a mobile computer located in the harvester cab. The system was field tested under commercial conditions and found to measure basket load weights within 2.5% of the reference scale. As such, the system was proven to be capable of providing an on-board auto-correction to a yield monitor for use in multi-variety field trials.
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