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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Microwave and Radio-Frequency Power Applications in Agriculture

Author
item Nelson, Stuart

Submitted to: The American Ceramics Society
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: September 10, 2003
Publication Date: November 10, 2003
Citation: NELSON, S.O. MICROWAVE AND RADIO-FREQUENCY POWER APPLICATIONS IN AGRICULTURE. EDS D.C. FOLZ, J.H. BOOSKE, D.E. CLARK, AND J.F. GERLING. THE AMERICAN CERAMICS SOCIETY, WESTERVILLE, OH. 2003. PP. 332-339.

Interpretive Summary: This paper is a brief review of microwave and lower frequency radio-frequency power applications that have been considered for use in agriculture. These mainly involve microwave and dielectric heating. The review includes potential uses for stored-product insect control, seed treatment to improve germination and seedling performance, conditioning of products such as soybeans and pecans, soil treatment to control weed seeds and other pests, crop drying, and sterilization of seeds infected by bacteria and fungi. The review provides references to the literature, where detailed information on the various applications can be found. It comments briefly on research findings and the reasons, mostly economic, for failure of many applications to be considered for practical use and points out advantages of some of the applications. When necessary tasks cannot be done in some other less expensive way, practical applications of microwave and radio-frequency energy may still be developed. The principal purpose of the review is to bring to the attention of the microwave and radio-frequency power industry those applications that have been studied so that further research in some areas may be initiated where advantages for practical use may be realized.

Technical Abstract: A brief review is presented of potential applications for radio-frequency and microwave power applications in agriculture. Included are applications for stored-product insect control, seed treatment to improve germination and seedling performance, conditioning of products to improve nutritional value or prolong keeping quality, soil treatment to control weeds, crop drying, and seed treatment for elimination of bacterial human pathogens. Limitations for practical application are also discussed.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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