INTEGRATED AGRICULTURAL SYSTEMS FOR THE NORTHERN GREAT PLAINS
Location: Northern Great Plains Research Laboratory
Title: Effects of field variables on infield biomass bales aggregation strategies
Submitted to: ASABE Annual International Meeting
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: July 31, 2012
Publication Date: August 27, 2012
Citation: Cannayen, I., Gustafson, C., Archer, D.W., Hendrickson, J.R., Kronberg, S.L. 2012. Effects of field variables on infield biomass bales aggregation strategies. ASABE Annual International Meeting. Paper #121337357.
Infield aggregation of bales, an essential logistics operation of clearing the field for subsequent cropping, is influenced by several field variables, such as field shape, area, randomness on bale layout, biomass yield per unit area, bale row spacing, number of bales handled simultaneously, collection paths (minimum distance path (MDP) vs baler path (MDP)), and aggregation strategies. This paper determines the effect of these field variables and also ranks the bale aggregation strategies based on efficiencies. Cumulative Euclidean distances of bale aggregation formed the evaluating principle for comparing various scenarios. The aggregation scenarios were compared with the simplest single bale loader method considered “control”. A developed computer program was used in the analysis. Statistical analysis revealed that the effect of field shape, randomness on bale layout, bale row spacing, and biomass yield per unit area did not affect aggregation efficiencies. However, area, number of bales handled simultaneously, collection paths, and aggregation strategies were significantly different in general, while no significant differences were found among closely related values. Overall, self-loading bale picker with MDP (80%) and parallel transport of loader and truck with MDP (78%) were ranked the highest and single bale central grouping the lowest (29%) on aggregation efficiency. Great savings on cumulative distances that directly influence time, fuel, and cost were realized when the number of bales handled is increased or additional equipment was utilized, and the results were applicable most field scenarios.