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Disinfestation of life stages of Tribolium castaneum in wheat using microwave energy

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

Citation:   No Citation available.
Authors:   R Vadivambal, D S Jayas, N D.G White
Keywords:   disinfestation, stored-grain insects, wheat, Tribolium castaneum, microwaves, mortality

Abstract Insecticide residues have adverse effects on humans, and insects develop resistance to insecticides. Hence there is a need for an alternate method for disinfestation of grain. Disinfestation of grains using microwaves can be an alternate method to insecticides for killing insects. A method to control Tribolium castaneum (Herbst) in wheat using microwave energy is described in this manuscript. An industrial microwave system operating at 2.45 GHz was used to determine the mortality of life stages of T. castaneum. Wheat samples of 50 g each at 14, 16, and 18% moisture content (wet basis) were infested with 5 and 10 insects. The infested samples were then exposed to microwaves at four different power levels of 250, 300, 400, and 500 W for two exposure times of 28 and 56 s. One hundred percent mortality was achieved at 400 W for eggs and for larvae, pupae and adult at 500 W. The mortality rates were lower at the lower power levels and shorter exposure time. Among the life stages, eggs were most susceptible followed by larvae, adult and pupae. Germination of wheat kernels was lowered after treatment with microwave energy.

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