Development of a riding-type fully automatic transplanter for vegetable plug seedlings

Luhua Han, Hanping Mao, Jianping Hu, Francis Kumi

Abstract


 

Aim of study: The aim of this study was to develop a riding-type fully automatic vegetable seedling transplanter enabling continuous transplanting work on 2 rows simultaneously with plug seedlings fed automatically.

Material and methods: In design, the transplanter consists of a 4-wheel drive system, a seedling pick-up mechanism, a seedling feeding mechanism, a rotation discharging mechanism, a 2-row planting mechanisms, and a multi-source control unit. The 4-wheel drive system is a riding type well adapting to slops. The seedling pick-up mechanism could extract several seedlings at a time from the tray cells conveyed by the feeding mechanism, and then transfer them to the rotation discharging mechanism where they would be released into the 2-row planting mechanisms. The multi-source control unit was constructed to carry out the flexible automation of seedling transplanting. Being the first prototype, the performance tests under actual production conditions were conducted on a vegetable base.

Main results: The testing results showed that the developed fully automatic transplanter could well grasp seedlings from the trays, transfer them, discharge them, and plant them into the ground. The success ratio in picking up seedlings and the qualified percent in planting seedlings were all up to 90%, and the coefficient of variation of plant spacing was less than 5% at the working speed of 60 plants row-1 min-1.

Research highlights: The overall planting effects could well meet the requirements of agronomy cultivation, and the quality of automatic transplanting was satisfactory

Keywords


seedling transplanting; pick-up mechanism; flexible automation; PLC

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References


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DOI: 10.5424/sjar/2019173-15358