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Comparison of an Impact Plate and Torque Based Yield Sensors

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  031034,  2003 ASAE Annual Meeting . (doi: 10.13031/2013.13971) @2003
Authors:   Jonathan Chaplin, Nathan Hemming, Brian Hetchler
Keywords:   yield sensor, precision agriculture, error analysis, accuracy, grain

The performance of two grain flow sensors was compared on a stationary combine in the laboratory. Grain flow to the machine was controlled by electronically modulating gate valves on two grain conduits. Base grain flows ranged from 0.91 to 6.36 kg/s in 0.91 kg/s steps. Perturbations of 0.91, 1.82, and 2.73 kg/s could be introduced into the machine through a separate conduit. The results showed that the torque sensor was ten times more sensitive to changes in flow rate when compared to the impact plate sensor. Standard errors for both sensors increased at flow rates below 3 kg/s (which corresponds to yields < 100 bu/acre). For flows < 1 kg/s, the standard error for the impact plate sensor was 60% and the torque sensor was 18%. At flow rates greater than 3 kg/s, error for the impact plate sensor was 15% whereas the error for the torque sensor was 5%. Measuring the energy required to lift the grain in the clean grain elevator is an alternate and more precise method of quantifying grain flow when compared to the impact plate sensor.

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