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Evaluation of Surface Effect, On Mechanical Damage of Potato Tubers Using Different Methods

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

Citation:  Paper number  131621826,  2013 Kansas City, Missouri, July 21 - July 24, 2013. (doi: @2013
Authors:   Ahmed Mustafa Rady, Soliman, N Soliman
Keywords:   Potato tubers Instrumented sphere respiration rate bruise mechanical damage..

Abstract. The losses during harvesting and subsequent handling operations are still a major problem for perishable products especially if the effect of the mechanical damage is not visible using the primary sorting stages. The objective of this study is to evaluate the mechanical damage that might result from harvesting potato tubers by impact on harvester and handling surface (steel sheet, steel rods, coated steel rods, tubers, and soil) using several methods: the instrumented sphere, respiration rate test, and estimation of bruise volume and split area. Lady Rosetta variety was selected as one of the most common Potato tuber varieties used in chips industry. Some experiments were conducted in cooperation with a multi international company local branch farm in Egypt which provided the raw materials along with the instrumented sphere (Impact Recording Device) to test the surfaces. Results showed that the minimum dropping height required to cause un allowable damage from steel sheet was 15 cm. However, this height was more than 90 cm for the dropping against 3 layers of potato tubers (Lady Rosetta with).Steel sheet surface had the least value of absorbed energy, followed by steel rod surface, coated steel rod surface, and finally the potato surface (3 layers). The respiration rate results clarified that steel sheet represented the highest value of respiration rate, followed by steel rod, coated steel rod, and finally potato surface (3 layers). The bruise volume of discolored area and split area were calculated for all the damaged tubers, and results showed that as the absorbed energy increased, the bruise volume and split area increased linearly too.

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