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Alfalfa Drying Model for the Field Environment

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

Citation:  Transactions of the ASAE. 28 (5): 1686-1691. (doi: 10.13031/2013.32500) @1985
Authors:   C. Alan Rotz, Yi Chen

ABSTRACT FIELD drying rates for alfalfa between 80 and 20% moisture content (wet basis) were measured along with environmental conditions from 1977 to 1984 at East Lansing, MI. Linear correlation was used to determine environmental factors which most influenced drying rate and nonlinear regression was used to develop an empirical model of drying rate as a function of the environment. Drying rate was most heavily influenced by solar insolation. Other factors which influenced drying included dry bulb temperature or vapor pressure deficit, soil moisture content, and swath density. Drying was also faster on the day in which the crop was mowed. When chemical conditioning was used, drying rate was influenced by the application rate of the chemical solution. Following the chemical treatment, swath density and the first day of drying had more influence on drying rate. Models relating these factors to drying rate provided a coefficient of determination of 0.64 when validated by comparing predicted and actual drying rate.

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