Submitted to: ASABE Annual International Meeting
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/1/2006
Publication Date: 7/12/2006
Citation: Le, S. 2006. Development of an electronic hopper weight scale. ASABE Annual International Meeting. Paper #061023 12pp.
Interpretive Summary: With the advent of process control and automation, online measurements of ginning process variables become feasible. A feedback control loop could be implemented based on mass flow measurements of various fiber streams in a ginning process to improve the yield and quality of the processed cotton. An electronic hopper with integrated hardware and software was developed to continuously capture and weigh the material flow in a ginning process. Results of the experiments showed that the design more than met its measurement target accuracy of +/- 5%. The development provides vital information for the ginning process optimization and can potentially increase ginning efficiency and profit for producers.
Technical Abstract: An electronic hopper weight scale was designed and built to measure and record the mass flow of seed cotton, lint or lint cleaner waste. The measurement could be used in a feedback control loop to optimize the operations of the ginning equipment which included the feed control, gin stand, and lint cleaners. The bottom doors of the electronic hopper scale were pneumatically controlled by a PC to collect and dispose of the cleaner waste. A PC based data acquisition and control application was developed to collect data from a low cost USB based A/D converter that sampled filtered and amplified signals from two S- type strain gages. Tests were conducted on the electronic hopper to verify its functionality and performance. The electronic hopper design and its control software achieved a target accuracy of +/- 5%.