Quantifying Corn Deterioration Due to Fungal Growth by Use of CO2-Sensitive Gel
Carbon dioxide (CO2) generation is a useful measure of aerobic respiration of the microbes that decompose organic materials. Woods End Labs markets the Solvita. test kit to measure CO2 generated by samples of compost or soil. A procedure was developed to use the Solvita. kit to quantify the storage condition of shelled corn. The ISU-Solvita. Corn Testing Procedure uses shelled corn stored at 20.C. After a 24-h incubation period, a CO2-sensitive gel coated paddle is sealed in a jar containing 100 g of corn. After 4 h, the CO2 level in the jar is indicated by the color of the gel. The ISU-Solvita. Corn Testing Procedure was shown to be capable of quantifying the storage state of corn over a range of moistures and durations of incubation after re-wetting. A linear relation was observed between corn moisture and measured %CO2 for moistures between 18% and 22%. An exponential relation was observed between measured %CO2 and storage times of 20% moisture corn from 3 to 12 days at 27.C. In other tests in which samples were rewetted to 20% moisture and incubated 24 h, there was no relationship between corn with visible mechanical damage or corn bulk density and measured CO2.
This article is from Applied Engineering in Agriculture 22 (2006): 81–86, doi:10.13031/2013.20174. Posted with permission.