From Planting to Harvesting: The Role of Agricultural Machinery in Crop Cultivation

A special issue of Agriculture (ISSN 2077-0472). This special issue belongs to the section "Agricultural Technology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 April 2024 | Viewed by 2361

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Shan Zeng
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
College of Engineering, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou 510642, China
Interests: agricultural mechanization; precision farming; agricultural intelligent equipment
Dr. Yu Wang
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
College of Engineering, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou 510642, China
Interests: agricultural mechanization; structural optimization; lightweight design; agricultural intelligent equipment

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The use of agricultural machinery in crop cultivation is a pivotal component of modern agriculture, defining the way crops are planted, cultivated, and harvested. This mechanized approach to crop production relies on the use of advanced machinery and technology to streamline farming processes, leading to increased efficiency, improved yields, and reduced labor requirements. The adoption of modern methods represents a significant shift from traditional, labor-intensive farming practices to more automated and precise methods. The importance of research and dissemination in the areas of crop mechanization is emphasized.

This Special Issue, entitled "From Planting to Harvesting: The Role of Agricultural Machinery in Crop Cultivation", is dedicated to advancing research and knowledge in the field of crop mechanization, with a strong focus on enhancing agricultural production efficiency, sustainability, and innovation. This Issue welcomes interdisciplinary studies from various research domains, encompassing agriculture, engineering, design, modeling, and environmental science. We encourage authors to submit both original research articles and reviews to this crucial discussion.

Dr. Shan Zeng
Dr. Yu Wang
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • agricultural machinery and equipment
  • precision farming
  • sustainable agriculture
  • mechanized crop management
  • automation and robotics

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

16 pages, 4958 KiB  
Article
Vibrational Dynamics of Rice Precision Hole Seeders and Their Impact on Seed Dispensation Efficacy
Agriculture 2024, 14(2), 324; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14020324 - 18 Feb 2024
Viewed by 430
Abstract
This investigation considered the effects of both internal and external excitation vibrations on the efficacy of the seed dispenser in a rice precision hole seeder. Through comprehensive field tests, we analyzed vibrational characteristics during direct seeder operations and established a vibration seeding test [...] Read more.
This investigation considered the effects of both internal and external excitation vibrations on the efficacy of the seed dispenser in a rice precision hole seeder. Through comprehensive field tests, we analyzed vibrational characteristics during direct seeder operations and established a vibration seeding test bed for systematic examination of these effects. Time-domain analysis of the vibration data revealed a predominantly vertical vibration direction, with notably higher levels in sandy loam soil compared to clay loam. A correlation was observed between increased engine size and rotary ploughing speeds, as well as forward speed and elevated vibration amplitudes. Frequency domain analysis pinpointed the primary vibration frequency of the machinery within the 0–170 Hz range, remaining consistent across different operating conditions. Crucially, bench test results indicated that seeding accuracy and dispersion were significantly influenced by vibration frequencies, particularly within the 70–130 Hz range, where a decrease in accuracy and increase in dispersion were noted. A regression model suggested a complex, non-linear relationship between seeding performance and vibration frequency. These insights highlight the necessity for a robust mechanism to effectively address these vibrational impacts. This study paves the way for enhancing the operational efficiency of the rice precision hole seeder, aiming to achieve the design goals of minimized vibrations in the paddy power chassis. Full article
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23 pages, 12561 KiB  
Article
Mechanism Analysis and Experimental Verification of Side-Filled Rice Precision Hole Direct Seed-Metering Device Based on MBD-DEM Simulations
Agriculture 2024, 14(2), 184; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14020184 - 25 Jan 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 479
Abstract
In order to solve the problems of poor hole-filling performance and the high seed-breakage rate of conventional rice bud seed precision hole direct seed-metering devices, a side-filled rice precision hole direct seed-metering device was developed, and the mechanism and force analyses for seeding [...] Read more.
In order to solve the problems of poor hole-filling performance and the high seed-breakage rate of conventional rice bud seed precision hole direct seed-metering devices, a side-filled rice precision hole direct seed-metering device was developed, and the mechanism and force analyses for seeding operations were carried out. The key factors affecting seeding quality were determined: rotation speed, seeding angle and seeding height. By coupling the discrete element method (DEM) and multi-rigid body dynamics (MBD), the seed breakage rate and seeding performance at different rotation speeds were analyzed. Single-factor bench testing was used to analyze the effect of a duckbill unit on seeding performance under different factor levels. The three-factor and five-level quadratic regression orthogonal rotation center combination test methods were used to obtain the optimal working parameter combination. The test results showed that when the rotation speed was 47 r/min, the seeding angle was 19°, and the seeding height was 180 mm, the qualified index of seeding was 92.03%, the hole diameter qualified index was 91.62%, and the hole distance variation index was 7.17%. This study provides a reference for the research of mechanical rice sprouting seed-metering devices. Full article
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23 pages, 23176 KiB  
Article
Analysis of the Interaction Mechanism between Preharvest Threshing Device and Rice at Harvesting Period Based on DEM Simulations and Bench Tests
Agriculture 2024, 14(2), 183; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14020183 - 25 Jan 2024
Viewed by 464
Abstract
Preharvest threshing is a harvesting method that focuses on collecting rice grains while leaving the rice straw unharvested. Investigating the interaction mechanism between the machine and rice during the operation process and its correlation with harvest losses is crucial for enhancing harvest quality. [...] Read more.
Preharvest threshing is a harvesting method that focuses on collecting rice grains while leaving the rice straw unharvested. Investigating the interaction mechanism between the machine and rice during the operation process and its correlation with harvest losses is crucial for enhancing harvest quality. In this study, structural design and operational mechanism analysis of the combs was conducted through theoretical analysis. By extracting the relevant parameters of rice plants, a model of entire-plant rice during the harvesting period was established based on the discrete element method (DEM). Numerical simulation studies were conducted to clarify the interaction mechanism between the machinery and rice at different operating stages and under various operating parameters, as well as the impact of this interaction on operational quality. The simulation results revealed that various operating parameters had a significant impact on the sliding-cut effect between the combs and rice. A higher cylinder rotation speed enhanced the effect, whereas increased forward velocity hampered it. Additionally, the effect initially improved and then decreased with a higher threshing height. In the bench test, high-speed cameras were used to verify and further analyze the comb–rice interaction mechanism and explore the optimal working parameter combination. The results showed that at a rotation speed of 616 r/min, a forward velocity of 0.91 m/s, and a threshing height of 792 mm, the grain loss rate was 1.997%, and the impurity rate was 4.073%. The harvesting losses were effectively reduced, validating the effectiveness of the study on the interaction between the machinery and rice. Full article
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20 pages, 6393 KiB  
Article
Design and Experiment of Adaptive Profiling Header Based on Multi-Body Dynamics–Discrete Element Method Coupling
Agriculture 2024, 14(1), 105; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14010105 - 08 Jan 2024
Viewed by 646
Abstract
To promote the germination of rice panicles during the regeneration season, it is necessary to ensure a stubble height of 300–450 mm when mechanically harvesting the first-season rice. However, due to variations in the depth of the paddy soil and fluctuations in the [...] Read more.
To promote the germination of rice panicles during the regeneration season, it is necessary to ensure a stubble height of 300–450 mm when mechanically harvesting the first-season rice. However, due to variations in the depth of the paddy soil and fluctuations in the height of the header during harvesting, maintaining the desired stubble height becomes challenging, resulting in a significant impact on the yield during the regeneration season. This study presents the design of an adaptive profiling header capable of adjusting the height and level of the header adaptively. Based on the theoretical analysis of the profiling mechanism, a quadratic regression orthogonal rotation combination experiment is designed. Considering the actual field conditions, the range of each factor is determined, and simulation experiments are conducted based on the MBD-DEM coupling to establish a mathematical regression model between each factor and indicator. In the case of the profiling wheel linkage length of 562 mm, profiling wheel width of 20 mm, and profiling wheel mass of 3.6 kg, the supporting force of the header on the profiling wheel would be greater than zero, the supporting force of soil on the profiling wheel and the depth of soil subsidence represent the smallest values, and the highest sensitivity and accuracy of the profiling wheel are achieved. Bench tests demonstrated that the header exerts a force on the profiling wheel, confirming the normal functioning of the profiling. The average magnitudes of forces exerted by the soil on the profiling wheel are obtained to be 31.98 N, 31.63 N, and 30.86 N, whereas the corresponding average soil subsidence depths are obtained as 3.4 mm, 5.6 mm, and 8.3 mm, aligning closely with the simulation values. The results indicate that the profiling mechanism achieves high accuracy in ground profiling and that the structural design is reasonable. By employing fuzzy PID control to adjust the height of the header, the average error in adjustment is obtained as 6.75 mm, while the average error in the horizontal adjustment is derived as 0.64°. The header adjustment is fast, offering high positioning accuracy, thereby meeting the harvesting requirements of the first season of ratooning rice. Full article
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