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Evaluation of Seedling Quality Using Mechanical Vibration Analysis

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

Citation:  Pp. 470-476 in Proceedings of the World Congress of Computers in Agriculture and Natural Resources (13-15, March 2002, Iguacu Falls, Brazil)  701P0301.(doi:10.13031/2013.8368)
Authors:   M. Uchigasaki, S. Miyamoto, K. Serata, S. Tojo, K. Watanabe, and K. Kudoh
Keywords:   Plant Biomechanics, Plant Morphometry, Mechanical Vibration Analysis, High Speed Video Camera, Seedling Quality

The mechanical and physiological properties of vegetable seedlings are good indicators of those seedlings quality. Mechanical vibration analysis (MVA) provides a rapid and repeatable method for determining the flexural stiffness and modulus of elasticity of segments of plant stems and leaves and can be used to evaluate the influence of culture and treatment (application of growth control and fertilization) on the morphometric and biomechanical properties. The objectives of the work reported here were: (1) to design a seedling quality sensor using analysis of the mechanical vibration generated in the seedling by mechanical impulse excitation; (2) to construct a prototype instrument in the laboratory; and (3) to measure morphometric and biomechanical properties of tomato seedlings and establish relationships between seedling quality indices. A prototype quality sensor was designed, constructed and tested. The device consists of a high speed video camera (HSVC Photron) mechanical impulse excitation generator. The results showed that this method can be useful for estimating the elastic modulus of the stem using mechanical vibrations (frequency). It is found that two parameters, elasticity (E) and flexural stiffness (EI), can be used to determine the quality of the tomato seedling.

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