Journal of Agricultural Engineering 2019-04-23T17:01:14+02:00 Paola Granata Open Journal Systems <p>The <strong>Journal of Agricultural Engineering (JAE)</strong> is the official journal of the <a href=""><strong>Italian Society of Agricultural Engineering</strong></a> supported by University of Bologna, Italy. The subject matter covers a complete and interdisciplinary range of research in engineering for agriculture and biosystems.</p> Fifty years of the Journal of Agricultural Engineering 2019-04-23T17:01:12+02:00 Claudio Gandolfi Giacomo Scarascia-Mugnozza <p>&nbsp;Not available</p> 2019-04-23T00:00:00+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## A preliminary study on the potential of front face fluorescence spectroscopy for Italian mono-cultivar extra virgin olive oil discrimination 2019-04-23T17:01:12+02:00 Dimas Firmanda Al Riza Naoshi Kondo Pasquale Catalano Ferruccio Giametta <p>Front-face fluorescence method has been used to obtain fluorescence excitation emission matrix (EEM) characteristic of various Italian monocultivar extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), Mixed EVOO, and lower grade virgin olive oil. Specific region of EEM has been explored using principle component analysis. It was found that EEM region of excitation 250-400 and emission 280-620 nm could be used to discriminate each sample type of different cultivar, mixed sample, and virgin olive oil sample. The important fluorescence peaks for the discrimination belong to unique combination of tocopherols, tocotrienols, phenolic compounds, oxidation products, and vitamin E. These results show that frontface fluorescence EEM spectroscopy has a potential to be used for monocultivar EVOO discrimination.</p> 2018-10-22T00:00:00+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Comparison of techniques for ammonia emission mitigation during storage of livestock manure and assessment of their effect in the management chain 2019-04-23T17:01:12+02:00 Alberto Finzi Elisabetta Riva Alda Bicoku Viviana Guido Seit Shallari Giorgio Provolo <p>The reduction of ammonia (NH3) emissions associated with manure management requires identification and implementation of effective techniques. The objective of this study was to measure potential ammonia emissions from animal manure and evaluate emission reductions for five mitigation techniques (straw, sawdust, clay, oil and sulphuric acid). Although numerous studies have evaluated individual mitigation techniques, the variability of their effect with different types of slurries has not been fully investigated. Furthermore, the assessment of ammonia emissions from the subsequent land application of stored manure (or slurry) using different techniques would indicate the practical consequences of the entire slurry management chain. The effects of mitigation techniques were evaluated using a model to simulate field application of slurry. Three techniques were compared: broadcast spreading, band spreading and closed-slot injection. Simulations utilised data from experiments conducted at a controlled temperature on six slurries of three different types: pig, cattle and digestate. Ammonia emissions from the raw slurries (<em>i.e</em>., untreated slurry) were determined using the dynamic chamber technique and compared with those from the slurries treated using each of five mitigation techniques. A subsample of one 1 L of each slurry was transferred into 2 L plastic bottles. An airflow of 1 L min<sup>–1</sup> across the headspace was established and then emissions were measured over a period of 24 h. The air outlet was connected to two serial acids traps filled with 1% boric acid. The quantity of NH3 trapped was determined by titration. Acidification and oil addition were the most effective techniques, reducing ammonia emission from raw slurries by more than 95% and 80%, respectively. The mitigation effects of straw and sawdust were higher for cattle slurry and digestate than for pig slurry, while clay had an opposite effect. The overall assessment of ammonia emissions from storage and subsequent field application showed that acidification followed by closed-slot injection emitted at most 12% of the emissions from the reference system, while emissions from acidification followed by band spreading were between 14% and 22% of those from the reference system. The latter appears to be both more effective than broadcast spreading and technically more easily operated than a closed-slot injector.</p> 2019-04-23T16:28:45+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Effects of surrounding objects on the thermal performance of passively ventilated greenhouses 2019-04-23T17:01:13+02:00 Edwin Andrés Villagrán Carlos Ricardo Bojacá <p>The growing expansion of protected horticulture in many regions is occurring around densely populated areas where land for agriculture is scarce, expensive or is used for other purposes. Inexpensive plastic passively ventilated greenhouses are the common choice for protected cultivation in these developing regions. The objective of this work was to analyse the effect of surrounding constructions and natural obstacles on the thermal performance of two naturally ventilated greenhouses. A saw tooth type greenhouse (<em>TCG</em>), typical for Colombian production, and an optimised greenhouse (<em>OG</em>) alternative with greater ventilation areas were analysed using computational fluid dynamics (<em>CFD</em>) with and without the surrounding objects of a real environment. The results showed that air exchange rate of a greenhouse with restricted ventilation areas are greatly reduced when neighbouring objects are high enough. This ventilation restriction is intensified under low wind speed conditions. The temperature gradients of the <em>OG</em> greenhouse were lower than those of the <em>TCG</em> scenarios due to the increased ventilation rates. The rooftop ventilation index for the <em>OG</em> greenhouse was increased by 65% with respect to the <em>TCG</em> greenhouse index, resulting in a direct effect on the ventilation rates. An improved air exchange with the outside can be reached by increasing the greenhouse ventilation areas, especially the roof vents, to overcome the airflow restrictions imposed by the surrounding environment. This simulation exercise was validated with field temperature data collected for a real <em>OG</em> prototype built in the Bogota plateau, with results showing a similar pattern for the internal temperature gradient as exhibited by the CFD model.</p> 2019-04-23T16:38:56+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Temperature, microwave power and pomace thickness impact on the drying kinetics and quality of carrot pomace 2019-04-23T17:01:13+02:00 Ernest Ekow Abano Robert Sarpong Amoah Eugene Kwabena Opoku <p>This study investigated the effect of air temperature, microwave power, and pomace thickness on the drying kinetics and quality of dried carrot pomace. The study established that the drying of carrot pomace occurs in the falling rate period, suggesting that drying was driven by molecular diffusion. The microwave-drying moisture diffusivity increased with microwave power and ranged between 1.57×10<sup>–8</sup> and 2.61×10<sup>–8</sup> m<sup>2</sup>/s. As regards convective air-drying, the moisture diffusivity values were between 3.38×10<sup>–10</sup> and 8.27×10<sup>–10</sup> m<sup>2</sup>/s. The microwave powerto-mass activation energy was 15.079 W/g for 5 mm, 7.599 W/g for 10 mm and 9.542 W/g for 15 mm dried samples. Meanwhile, the temperature-dependent activation energy for carrot pomace was found to be 27.637 kJ/mol for 5 mm, 17.92 kJ/mol for 10 mm and 38.76 kJ/mol for 15 mm thickness pomace. Generally, drying time decreased with increasing microwave power or air temperature. The ascorbic acid content of the fresh carrot pomace reduced after both microwave and convective air-drying. However, microwave power, and sample thickness had significant effect on the β-carotene content of dried products but air temperature did not have a significant effect. The effect of temperature and sample thickness on brown pigment formation was substantial with air temperature compared to microwave. The study has demonstrated that microwave drying, compared to conventional drying, enhances moisture removal, drying time, and preservation of carotenoids and ascorbic acid. Therefore, microwave drying can be considered as an alternative method for obtaining quality dried carrot pomace.</p> 2019-04-23T16:46:38+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Testing a multi-rotor unmanned aerial vehicle for spray application in high slope terraced vineyard 2019-04-23T17:01:13+02:00 Daniele Sarri Luisa Martelloni Marco Rimediotti Riccardo Lisci Stefania Lombardo Marco Vieri <p>Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are being increasingly used for the spraying of pesticides for crop protection in complex geographic terrains that are not easily accessible by operators. This experiment was conducted to investigate the sprayer performance of a commercial UAV, equipped with different types of nozzles, and compare this new technology with the sprayers usually used on small size mountain vineyards (<em>i.e</em>. a knapsack sprayer and a sprayer gun). Field tests were conducted in a small high slope terraced vineyard. The operative parameters of the sprayers were calculated. Data on droplet coverage, density and size were collected by using water sensitive papers attached with clips to the leaves and analysed. The results showed that the working capacity of the UAV was 2-fold that of the sprayer gun 1.6-fold that of the knapsack sprayer. Droplet coverage, density and size were variable and affected by the position of the targets (water sensitive papers) and the type of sprayer used.</p> 2019-04-23T16:53:23+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Performance of a snow blower prototype mounted on different vehicles type 2019-04-23T17:01:14+02:00 Marco Manzone Bruno Ruffinengo <p>All transportation sectors, in many countries of the world have shown problems related to the presence of snow on roads. The purpose of this work was to evaluate the performances of a snow blower prototype that can be attached in front of different commercial vehicle types (quad-bike, car, and small tractor) specifically developed for urban areas and private use. The prototype was tested using three different pavement types (bare soil, concrete, and asphalt) and with different snow layer thickness (50, 100, 150, 200, 250, and 300 mm). The highest forward speed (2.51 km h<sup>–1</sup>) was obtained using the car on asphalt pavement working with a snow layer thickness of 50 mm. In contrast, the lowest forward speed (0.28 km h<sup>–1</sup>) was observed when the prototype was fixed to the quad-bike and it worked on concrete base with a snow depth of 300 mm. The forward speed, and consequently also the productivity, varied only as a function of snow thickness. The prototype has demonstrated functional quality in all testing conditions leaving only a <em>snow residue</em> after its passage of about 0.18 dm<sup>3</sup> on 100 meter of road. The hourly fuel consumption varied between 6.56 and 6.68 litres highlighting an average specific fuel consumption of 319.5 g kWh<sup>–1</sup>. The snow blower prototype, as it demonstrated good performance in all tested working conditions, seems to be a valid solution in snow-removal especially in private areas where the equipment versatility plays a fundamental rule.</p> 2019-04-23T16:57:42+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement##