Design, Development and Evaluation of Neem (Azadirachta indica) Fruit Picker Cum Collector

M. Gowtham

Department of Farm Machinery and Power Engineering, Agricultural Engineering College and Research Institute, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore – 641 003, India.

B. Suthakar *

Department of Farm Machinery and Power Engineering, Agricultural Engineering College and Research Institute, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Kumulur – 621 712, India.

A. Surendrakumar

Department of Farm Machinery and Power Engineering, Agricultural Engineering College and Research Institute, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore – 641 003, India.

R. Kavitha

Department of Farm Machinery and Power Engineering, Agricultural Engineering College and Research Institute, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore – 641 003, India.

P. Masilamani

Sugarcane Research Station, Sirugamani, Trichy – 639 115, India.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Abstract

Harvesting of neem fruits can be done either by ground picking, shaking off the tree, or directly stripping from the branches. Since the manual collection of neem fruits is a labor-intensive process, consuming around 30 per cent of harvesting time, a simple mechanical system for picking and collecting the neem fruits from the ground was developed based on the fruit geometry and other major physical properties of neem fruits. It was observed that the moisture content of 81.95%, axial dimensions viz. 15.57 mm length, 9.25 mm width and 8.87 mm thickness of the fruits, 14.07 mm as geometric mean diameter, as 352 g. cm­-1 bulk density and 290.88 g as the weight of hundred neem fruits. The developed prototype consists of picker assembly, ejector assembly, collector assembly, connector frame, handle and traction wheel. The proposed innovation enables an eco – friendly operation of neem fruit collection without using any form of non- renewable energy sources. The developed prototype achieved a collection capacity of about 48 kg h-1 which is 79.1% higher when compared with existing pneumatic ground collection system for neem fruits and 97.3% higher than the conventional method of neem fruit collection.

Keywords: Neem harvesting, physical properties of neem, picker cum collector, ground collection system for neem fruits, picking and collection efficiency


How to Cite

Gowtham, M., Suthakar, B., Surendrakumar , A., Kavitha , R., & Masilamani , P. (2024). Design, Development and Evaluation of Neem (Azadirachta indica) Fruit Picker Cum Collector. Journal of Experimental Agriculture International, 46(2), 35–45. https://doi.org/10.9734/jeai/2024/v46i22307

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