Submitted to: National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: January 4, 2006
Publication Date: June 10, 2006
Citation: Ray, S.J. 2006. Evaluation of an experimental machine to clean lint cleaner waste. National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference. CD ROM pp. 550-555. Interpretive Summary: Gin machines, especially saw-type lint cleaners, typically lose good fiber while they remove foreign matter. Gin plants typically generate supplemental income from cleaning lint cleaner waste (LCW) with a cylinder-type seed cotton cleaner and selling it to secondary processors for further cleaning. A substantial amount of fiber is also lost when the LCW is cleaned at the gin as well as at the secondary processor. In this study, an experimental machine to clean LCW was developed and evaluated. The experimental machine was compared to the typical cleaning machine at the gin as well as the typical cleaning sequence in a secondary processing plant. Two levels of moisture and two levels of initial foreign matter content were incorporated into the test. The amount of usable fiber recovered from the LCW as well as its grade and thus value was determined for all machine treatments. Results indicate that the experimental machine increased the income to the gin by $0.61 per bale of ginned lint, but reflected a net loss of $0.55 per bale of ginned lint when compared to the machine sequence at a processing plant. Therefore, considering only cost savings, the experimental machine would benefit a gin plant. The experimental machine must be improved before it can be recommended for secondary processing plants. Extension of the increase in income to the 20 million bales of U.S. cotton annually indicates that gin income would increase over $12 million.
Technical Abstract: Cotton gins typically generate supplemental returns from selling lint cleaner waste (LCW), commonly called “motes”. The LCW is usually cleaned with a cylinder cleaner at the gin before selling to a merchant or secondary processor. This study evaluated the performance of an experimental machine that used both seed cotton cleaning and lint cleaning principles to clean LCW. The new machine consisted of a modified six-cylinder cleaner coupled with two lint cleaning saws as well as a fiber retaining saw. The performance of the experimental machine preceded by a conventional cylinder cleaner was compared to the performances of both a conventional cylinder cleaner that simulated gin-level cleaning, and a sequence of three seed cotton-type cleaners followed by two saw-type lint cleaners that simulated cleaning at a secondary processing plant. Two levels of initial foreign matter content (FMC) and two levels of moisture were incorporated into the test. Results indicated that the experimental machine increased the gross returns for the gin by $0.61 per bale of ginned lint over the conventional cylinder cleaner, but the returns from the three seed cotton-type cleaners in conjunction with the two saw-type lint cleaners exceeded that from the experimental machine by $0.55 per bale of ginned lint. Therefore, the current version of the experimental machine would benefit a gin plant.