Topic Editors

Department of Agricultural Engineering, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan 60800, Pakistan
Department of Agricultural Engineering, College of Engineering, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100083, China
Leibniz Institute for Agricultural Engineering and Bioeconomy, 14469 Potsdam, Germany
Department of Mechanical, Biomedical and Design Engineering, College of Engineering and Physical Sciences, Aston University, Birmingham B4 7ET, UK

Emerging Agricultural Engineering Sciences, Technologies, and Applications—2nd Edition

Abstract submission deadline
31 December 2024
Manuscript submission deadline
20 March 2025
Viewed by
5144

Topic Information

Dear Colleagues,

Modern agricultural engineering technologies and applications are directly linked with the 2030 United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (UN-SDGs). Technological advancement is essential to next-generation agriculture in order to ensure food security, poverty alleviation, and sustainability. Worldwide, it is directly associated with farm mechanization; automation and robotics; intelligent agriculture; high-efficiency irrigation systems; indoor farming and soilless agriculture; precision/conservation agriculture; farm energy systems; post-harvest storage/processing and value addition; tillage and cultivation; spraying and harvesting machinery; livestock and poultry sheds; safe utilization of coal and bioenergy; remote sensing and geographical studies; wastewater management; societal aspects in agriculture; and the associated bioenvironment. Consequently, this topic aims to explore the interdisciplinary nature of research on such agricultural engineering sciences, technologies, and applications from the viewpoint of the agricultural water–energy–food-security nexus. Increasing agriculture modernization mitigates conventional energy reserves, which also escalates greenhouse-gas emissions and climate change. Carbon-neutral development and clean-energy utilization are also associated with the UN-SDGs. Thus, it is important to develop energy-efficient and environmentally friendly solutions to ensure the agriculture sector achieves the UN-SDGs.

This topic invites a wide range of emerging concepts on agricultural engineering technologies and applications by which sustainable agriculture and associated UN-SDGs can be ensured. We look forward to receiving cutting-edge original research, review, case studies, and/or recent progress/scenarios.

Dr. Muhammad Sultan
Dr. Yuguang Zhou
Dr. Redmond R. Shamshiri
Dr. Muhammad Imran
Topic Editors

Keywords

  • biomass, bioenergy, and clean fuel
  • farm mechanization and robotics
  • food science and processing
  • high-efficiency irrigation systems
  • hydroponic and aeroponic agriculture
  • irrigation systems and applications
  • modern control sheds and livestock barns
  • next-generation greenhouses
  • precision farming and food security
  • renewable energy for agriculture
  • smart and sustainable agriculture
  • solar dryers and solar pumping
  • sustainable bioenvironment
  • temperature/humidity control in agriculture
  • water and wastewater treatment

Participating Journals

Journal Name Impact Factor CiteScore Launched Year First Decision (median) APC
Agriculture
agriculture
3.6 3.6 2011 17.7 Days CHF 2600 Submit
AgriEngineering
agriengineering
2.8 4.6 2019 25.8 Days CHF 1600 Submit
Sustainability
sustainability
3.9 5.8 2009 18.8 Days CHF 2400 Submit
Agronomy
agronomy
3.7 5.2 2011 15.8 Days CHF 2600 Submit
Crops
crops
- - 2021 30.5 Days CHF 1000 Submit

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Published Papers (5 papers)

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20 pages, 1326 KiB  
Review
The Potential of Cold Plasma-Based Seed Treatments in Legume–Rhizobia Symbiotic Nitrogen Fixation: A Review
by Dhanuja N. Abeysingha, Harleen K. Dhaliwal, Lihui Du, Chathuranga De Silva, Krzysztof Szczyglowski, M. S. Roopesh and Malinda S. Thilakarathna
Crops 2024, 4(1), 95-114; https://doi.org/10.3390/crops4010008 - 11 Mar 2024
Viewed by 645
Abstract
The use of cold plasma (CP) seed treatment is an emerging agricultural technology that exhibits the potential to enhance nodulation and symbiotic nitrogen fixation (SNF) in legumes. CP is composed of a diverse mixture of excited atoms, molecules, ions, and radicals that have [...] Read more.
The use of cold plasma (CP) seed treatment is an emerging agricultural technology that exhibits the potential to enhance nodulation and symbiotic nitrogen fixation (SNF) in legumes. CP is composed of a diverse mixture of excited atoms, molecules, ions, and radicals that have the potential to affect the physical properties of the seed and influence gene expressions that could have a lasting impact on the nodulation, SNF, growth, and yield of legumes. The direct participation of the CP in the nodulation process and its correlation with the escalation of nodules and SNF is still not fully understood. This review discussed four areas in the nodulation and SNF process that can directly or indirectly affect CP seed treatments: root–rhizobia signal exchange pathways, root/shoot growth and development, phytohormone production, and the nitrogen fixation process. We also discuss the potential challenges and future research requirements associated with plasma technology to enhance SNF in legumes. Full article
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20 pages, 5526 KiB  
Article
ENVISPRAY: A Methodology to Evaluate PAE (Pesticide Application Equipment) According to the Environmental Risk
by Rubén Collantes, Ramon Salcedo, Enric Armengol, Jose F. Schlosser and Emilio Gil
Agronomy 2024, 14(3), 561; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy14030561 - 11 Mar 2024
Viewed by 530
Abstract
Pesticide application equipment (PAE) is the last part of the chain during the plant protection process. The use-phase of plant protection products (PPP) has been addressed in two EU Directives: 128/2009/EC and 127/2009/EC. This last one covers all the mandatory technical requirements to [...] Read more.
Pesticide application equipment (PAE) is the last part of the chain during the plant protection process. The use-phase of plant protection products (PPP) has been addressed in two EU Directives: 128/2009/EC and 127/2009/EC. This last one covers all the mandatory technical requirements to be fulfilled by new sprayers prior to their placement in the market. The objective of this research was to develop a potential decision support system (DSS) to evaluate and quantify the degree of implementation of all the required characteristics of new sprayers, including not only the mandatory requirements but also specifications widely described in the corresponding harmonized standard ISO 16119. It includes 10 independent elements of the sprayer, including a list of technical specifications listed in the applied standards ISO 16119 and ISO 16122. The relative influence of every one of the different elements has been quantified based on previous research. The algorithm enables the establishment of an objective relative classification of the sprayers to differentiate among different machines, mainly based on their quantified environmental contamination risk. The DSS can also discriminate among sprayers that should not reach the market due to their non-compliance with any of the mandatory requirements. Full article
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36 pages, 3119 KiB  
Review
Plastic Pollution in Agriculture as a Threat to Food Security, the Ecosystem, and the Environment: An Overview
by Imran Ali Lakhiar, Haofang Yan, Jianyun Zhang, Guoqing Wang, Shuaishuai Deng, Rongxuan Bao, Chuan Zhang, Tabinda Naz Syed, Biyu Wang, Rui Zhou and Xuanxuan Wang
Agronomy 2024, 14(3), 548; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy14030548 - 07 Mar 2024
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1437
Abstract
Plastic products in plant production and protection help farmers increase crop production, enhance food quality, and reduce global water use and their environmental footprint. Simultaneously, plastic has emerged as a critical ecological issue in recent years, and its pollution has significantly impacted soil, [...] Read more.
Plastic products in plant production and protection help farmers increase crop production, enhance food quality, and reduce global water use and their environmental footprint. Simultaneously, plastic has emerged as a critical ecological issue in recent years, and its pollution has significantly impacted soil, water, and plants. Thus, this review examines the multifaceted problems of plastic pollution in agriculture as a risk to food security, the ecosystem, and the environment. The study’s objective was to review and present the most recent information on using different plastic products in agriculture, the sources of plastic pollution, the advantages and drawbacks of using plastic products, and the strategies for mitigating plastic pollution in agriculture. Furthermore, after examining current plastic applications, benefits, adverse effects, and risks to soil, plants, and the environment, we addressed the requirements for technological advancements, regulations, and social processes that could contribute to mitigating plastic pollution in our ecosystems. We identified different pathways toward more sustainable use of plastics in agriculture and discussed future research directions. Full article
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20 pages, 2570 KiB  
Article
Prediction of Specific Fuel Consumption of a Tractor during the Tillage Process Using an Artificial Neural Network Method
by Saleh M. Al-Sager, Saad S. Almady, Samy A. Marey, Saad A. Al-Hamed and Abdulwahed M. Aboukarima
Agronomy 2024, 14(3), 492; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy14030492 - 28 Feb 2024
Viewed by 660
Abstract
In mechanized agricultural activities, fuel is particularly important for tillage operations. In this study, the impact of seven distinct parameters on fuel usage per unit of draft power was examined. The parameters are tractor power, soil texture index, plowing speed, plowing depth, width [...] Read more.
In mechanized agricultural activities, fuel is particularly important for tillage operations. In this study, the impact of seven distinct parameters on fuel usage per unit of draft power was examined. The parameters are tractor power, soil texture index, plowing speed, plowing depth, width of implement, and both initial soil moisture content and soil bulk density. This study investigated the construction of an artificial neural network (ANN) model for tractor-specific fuel consumption predictions for two tillage implements: chisel and moldboard plows. The ANN model was created based on the collection of related data from previous research studies, and the validation was performed using actual field experiments in clay soil using a chisel plow. The developed ANN model (9-22-1) was confirmed by graphical assessment; additionally, the root-mean-square error (RMSE) was computed. Based on the RMSE, the results demonstrated a good agreement for specific fuel consumption per draft power between the observed and predicted values, with corresponding RMSE values of 0.08 L/kWh and 0.075 L/kWh for the training and testing datasets, respectively. The novelty of the work presented in this paper is that, for the first time, a farm machinery manager can optimize tractor fuel consumption per draft power by carefully controlling certain parameters, such as initial soil moisture content, tractor power, plowing speed, implement width, and depth of plowing. The results show that the input parameters make a significant contribution to the output over the used data with different percentages. Accordingly, the contribution analysis showed that the implement width had a high impact on tractor-specific fuel consumption for both plows at 30.13%; additionally, the chisel and moldboard plows contributed 4.19% and 4.25% in predicting tractor fuel consumption per draft power. This study concluded that practical useful advice for agricultural production can be achieved through optimizing fuel consumption rate by selecting the proper levels of affecting parameters to reduce fuel costs. Moreover, an ANN model could be used to develop future tractor fuel-planning schemes for tillage operations. Full article
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17 pages, 6627 KiB  
Article
Effects of Burial Furrow Parameters on Soil Water Movement under Subsurface Stalk Composite Pipe Irrigation
by Feng Wu, Xuefang Feng, Xuemei Liu, Di Wu, Songmei Zai and Linbao Liu
Agriculture 2024, 14(2), 287; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14020287 - 10 Feb 2024
Viewed by 651
Abstract
Stalk composite pipe (SCP), a novel product used for subsurface irrigation, is primarily composed of crop stalks, soil, and water. In subsurface SCP irrigation (SSI), comprehending the effects of burial furrow parameters on soil water movement is critical. However, the precise effects are [...] Read more.
Stalk composite pipe (SCP), a novel product used for subsurface irrigation, is primarily composed of crop stalks, soil, and water. In subsurface SCP irrigation (SSI), comprehending the effects of burial furrow parameters on soil water movement is critical. However, the precise effects are not known. Here, we aimed to assess the effects of varying burial furrow dimensions, including widths of 15, 20, and 25 cm, depths of 10, 15, and 20 cm, and backfilling-soil bulk densities of 1.1, 1.2, and 1.3 g cm−3, on wetted distance and soil water movement. We conducted an indoor soil bin experiment and numerical simulation using HYDRUS-2D in 2020–2021 in Zhengzhou City, Northern China. Wider burial furrows resulted in increased wetted distance and soil water content, ultimately leading to greater effect in a horizontal direction. In the horizontal profile, the average soil water content of the SSI treatments, which used burial furrow widths of 15, 20, and 25 cm, were 1.121, 1.230, and 1.280 times higher, respectively, than those of CK. The burial furrow depth had minimal effect on the wetted distance, whereas adjusting the burial furrow depth primarily affected the saturation depth. The speed of wetting-front migration was affected by the backfilling-soil bulk density. For a given soil and crop, it is advisable to determine first the burial furrow width and backfilling-soil bulk density. Subsequently, the burial furrow depth should be established based on the distribution of the crop’s roots. Our findings offer a scientific basis for using SSI. Full article
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