Performance evaluation of a flatbed maize dryer with a biomass heat source

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2022-01-08
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Boateng, H. A.
Obeng-Akrof, G.
Maier, Dirk E.
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IJARIT Research Foundation
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Maier, Dirk
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Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Since 1905, the Department of Agricultural Engineering, now the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE), has been a leader in providing engineering solutions to agricultural problems in the United States and the world. The department’s original mission was to mechanize agriculture. That mission has evolved to encompass a global view of the entire food production system–the wise management of natural resources in the production, processing, storage, handling, and use of food fiber and other biological products.

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In 1905 Agricultural Engineering was recognized as a subdivision of the Department of Agronomy, and in 1907 it was recognized as a unique department. It was renamed the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering in 1990. The department merged with the Department of Industrial Education and Technology in 2004.

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1905–present

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  • Department of Agricultural Engineering (1907–1990)

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Food Science and Human Nutrition

The Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition (FSHN) at Iowa State University is jointly administered by the Colleges of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Human Science. FSHN combines the study and practical application of food sciences and technology with human nutrition in preparation for a variety of fields including: the culinary sciences, dietetics, nutrition, food industries, and diet and exercise.

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The department was established in 1991 through the merging of the Department of Food Sciences and Technology (of the College of Agriculture), and the Department of Food and Nutrition (of the College of Family and Consumer Sciences).

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Abstract
The technical performance of a 3-tonne capacity flatbed grain dryer was assessed based on its drying rate and drying efficiency. In addition, the quality of maize grains dried in the drying system was investigated through stress-crack analysis and germination test. Maize grains at an initial moisture content of 18.4% ± 0.1% (wb) were dried to a safe moisture content of 13.3% ± 0.2% (wb) in 5 hours, resulting in a drying rate of 1.02%/h at a drying efficiency of 67.35%. The average temperature observed in the plenum (55.8°C±1.5°C) was about twice higher than the ambient temperature during the drying period. The use of the flatbed dryer did not have any adverse effect on the viability of grains dried with a stress-crack index of 75 and percentage germination of 90%. This study demonstrated the viability of using the flatbed biomass-assisted dryer for drying maize and can reduce post-harvest losses of maize at the smallholder level.
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This article is published as Akowuah, J. O., H. A. Boateng, G. Obeng Akrofi, and D. E. Maier. "Performance evaluation of a flatbed maize dryer with a biomass heat source." International Journal of Agricultural Research, Innovation and Technology (IJARIT) 11, no. 2355-2022-152 (2021): 37-41. DOI: 10.3329/ijarit.v11i2.57253. Copyright 2021 International Journal of Agricultural Research, Innovation and Technology. Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0). Posted with permission.
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