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

Citation:  Paper number  141908935,  2014 Montreal, Quebec Canada July 13 – July 16, 2014. (doi: 10.13031/aim.20141908935) @2014
Authors:   Rashid Ali Suleiman, Kurt A Rosentrater
Keywords:   Maize storage; techno-economic analysis; life cycle analysis; capital cost; fixed cost; variable cost.

Abstract. Maize is the most widely cultivated cereal crop worldwide, currently ranked the third most important crop globally after wheat and rice. It is a key staple food in many developing countries. However, maize is produced on a seasonal basis, usually harvest once per year. To maintain a constant supply throughout the year, maize should be properly stored. But this entails high cost and high-energy consumption, which can contribute significant amounts of greenhouse gas emissions. In this study, three storage capacities (2,500 kg/y, 25,000 kg/y, and 250,000 kg/y) were evaluated for economic analysis and environmental impact. The results show that the larger the storage capacity, the more economical, and the total annualized storage cost per kg decreased as storage capacity increased (61.83 $/kg/y, 14.05 $/kg/y, and 5.91 $/kg/y). Likewise, as storage capacity increased, more energy was required to operate the equipment. Consequently, more greenhouse gas emissions (CO2, CH4, and NOX) were emitted to the environments. Thus, to obtain an optimal balance between economics and the environment, it is important for the farmers in developing countries to understand the concepts of techno-economic analysis (TEA) and life cycle assessment (LCA).

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