Calibration and Performance Evaluation of Grain Corn Fertilizing Implement
Fertilisation in grain corn production is an important stage that must be done properly in terms of the amount of fertiliser used to reduce wastage and ensure crop growth. A fertilising implement brand Gasprado, was calibrated and evaluated for its performance to apply urea to grain corn crops at MARDI Seberang Perai, Pulau Pinang. Calibration was conducted to set the right metering for the device's opening to drop urea that meets the application rate of 130kg/ha. This was done by measuring the amount of urea dropped for a particular setting and distance. The machine has four metering devices which were labelled as MD1, MD2, MD3 and MD4. Additionally, the fertiliser applicator also comes with spring tine cultivating devices. The implement was tested for fertilising 56 rows of grain corn in the distance of 62 m long. The times taken for the tractor to finish four rows per run along the 62-m distance and to turn at the headland were recorded to evaluate the performance. The implement's metering devices MD1, MD2, MD3 and MD4 were calibrated at setting scales of B-1.5, B-0, B-0 and B-0, respectively that gave the urea application rate of 133 kg/ha, which was the nearest rate to the recommendation. The average working speed of the operation was at 4.08 km/h with the theoretical field capacity to be at 1.224 ha/h. Meanwhile, the machine's effective field capacity was 0.5208 ha/h, which had a field efficiency of 42.5 % for the particular farm design. The use of machine can speed up the operation of applying fertiliser to the grain corn crop but the performance is dependent on the farm layout.
Copyright (c) 2021 Rohazrin Abdul Rani, Adli Fikri Ahmad Sayuti, Mohd Khusairy Khadzir, Muhammad Haniff Ahmad
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