Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 11

Search results for: greenhouses

11 Microwave Plasma Dry Reforming of Methane at High CO2/CH4 Feed Ratio

Authors: Nabil Majd Alawi, Gia Hung Pham, Ahmed Barifcani

Abstract:

Dry reforming of methane that converts two greenhouses gases (CH4 and CO2) to synthesis gas (a mixture of H2 and CO) was studied in a commercial bench scale microwave (MW) plasma reactor system at atmospheric pressure. The CO2, CH4 and N2 conversions; H2, CO selectivities and yields, and syngas ratio (H2/CO) were investigated in a wide range of total feed flow rate (0.45 – 2.1 L/min), MW power (700 – 1200 watt) and CO2/CH4 molar ratio (2 – 5). At the feed flow rates of CH4, CO2 and N2 of 0.2, 0.4 and 1.5 L/min respectively, and the MWs input power of 700 W, the highest conversions of CH4 and CO2, selectivity and yield of H2, CO and H2/CO ratio of 79.35%, 44.82%, 50.12, 58.42, 39.77%, 32.89%, and 0.86, respectively, were achieved. The results of this work show that the product ratio increases slightly with the increasing total feed flow rate, but it decreases significantly with the increasing MW power and feeds CO2/CH4 ratio.

Keywords: Atmospheric pressure, methane dry reforming, microwave plasma, synthesis gas production.

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10 Closed Greenhouse Production Systems for Smart Plant Production in Urban Areas

Authors: U. Schmidt, D. Dannehl, I. Schuch, J. Suhl, T. Rocksch, R. Salazar-Moreno, E. Fitz-Rodrigues, A. Rojano Aquilar, I. Lopez Cruz, G. Navas Gomez, R. A. Abraham, L. C. Irineo, N. G. Gilberto

Abstract:

The integration of agricultural production systems into urban areas is a challenge for the coming decades. Because of increasing greenhouse gas emission and rising resource consumption as well as costs in animal husbandry, the dietary habits of people in the 21st century have to focus on herbal foods. Intensive plant cultivation systems in large cities and megacities require a smart coupling of information, material and energy flow with the urban infrastructure in terms of Horticulture 4.0. In recent years, many puzzle pieces have been developed for these closed processes at the Humboldt University. To compile these for an urban plant production, it has to be optimized and networked with urban infrastructure systems. In the field of heat energy production, it was shown that with closed greenhouse technology and patented heat exchange and storage technology energy can be provided for heating and domestic hot water supply in the city. Closed water circuits can be drastically reducing the water requirements of plant production in urban areas. Ion sensitive sensors and new disinfection methods can help keep circulating nutrient solutions in the system for a longer time in urban plant production greenhouses.

Keywords: Semi closed, greenhouses, urban farming, solar heat collector, closed water cycles, aquaponics.

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9 Fuzzy Control of Thermally Isolated Greenhouse Building by Utilizing Underground Heat Exchanger and Outside Weather Conditions

Authors: Raghad Alhusari, Farag Omar, Moustafa Fadel

Abstract:

A traditional greenhouse is a metal frame agricultural building used for cultivation plants in a controlled environment isolated from external climatic changes. Using greenhouses in agriculture is an efficient way to reduce the water consumption, where agriculture field is considered the biggest water consumer world widely. Controlling greenhouse environment yields better productivity of plants but demands an increase of electric power. Although various control approaches have been used towards greenhouse automation, most of them are applied to traditional greenhouses with ventilation fans and/or evaporation cooling system. Such approaches are still demanding high energy and water consumption. The aim of this research is to develop a fuzzy control system that minimizes water and energy consumption by utilizing outside weather conditions and underground heat exchanger to maintain the optimum climate of the greenhouse. The proposed control system is implemented on an experimental model of thermally isolated greenhouse structure with dimensions of 6x5x2.8 meters. It uses fans for extracting heat from the ground heat exchanger system, motors for automatic open/close of the greenhouse windows and LED as lighting system. The controller is integrated also with environmental condition sensors. It was found that using the air-to-air horizontal ground heat exchanger with 90 mm diameter and 2 mm thickness placed 2.5 m below the ground surface results in decreasing the greenhouse temperature of 3.28 ˚C which saves around 3 kW of consumed energy. It also eliminated the water consumption needed in evaporation cooling systems which are traditionally used for cooling the greenhouse environment.

Keywords: Automation, earth-to-air heat exchangers, fuzzy control, greenhouse, sustainable buildings.

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8 Detecting Tomato Flowers in Greenhouses Using Computer Vision

Authors: Dor Oppenheim, Yael Edan, Guy Shani

Abstract:

This paper presents an image analysis algorithm to detect and count yellow tomato flowers in a greenhouse with uneven illumination conditions, complex growth conditions and different flower sizes. The algorithm is designed to be employed on a drone that flies in greenhouses to accomplish several tasks such as pollination and yield estimation. Detecting the flowers can provide useful information for the farmer, such as the number of flowers in a row, and the number of flowers that were pollinated since the last visit to the row. The developed algorithm is designed to handle the real world difficulties in a greenhouse which include varying lighting conditions, shadowing, and occlusion, while considering the computational limitations of the simple processor in the drone. The algorithm identifies flowers using an adaptive global threshold, segmentation over the HSV color space, and morphological cues. The adaptive threshold divides the images into darker and lighter images. Then, segmentation on the hue, saturation and volume is performed accordingly, and classification is done according to size and location of the flowers. 1069 images of greenhouse tomato flowers were acquired in a commercial greenhouse in Israel, using two different RGB Cameras – an LG G4 smartphone and a Canon PowerShot A590. The images were acquired from multiple angles and distances and were sampled manually at various periods along the day to obtain varying lighting conditions. Ground truth was created by manually tagging approximately 25,000 individual flowers in the images. Sensitivity analyses on the acquisition angle of the images, periods throughout the day, different cameras and thresholding types were performed. Precision, recall and their derived F1 score were calculated. Results indicate better performance for the view angle facing the flowers than any other angle. Acquiring images in the afternoon resulted with the best precision and recall results. Applying a global adaptive threshold improved the median F1 score by 3%. Results showed no difference between the two cameras used. Using hue values of 0.12-0.18 in the segmentation process provided the best results in precision and recall, and the best F1 score. The precision and recall average for all the images when using these values was 74% and 75% respectively with an F1 score of 0.73. Further analysis showed a 5% increase in precision and recall when analyzing images acquired in the afternoon and from the front viewpoint.

Keywords: Agricultural engineering, computer vision, image processing, flower detection.

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7 Solar Calculations of Modified Arch (Semi Spherical) Type Greenhouse System for Bayburt City

Authors: Uğur Çakır, Erol Sahin, Kemal Çomaklı, Aysegül Çokgez Kus

Abstract:

Greenhouses offer us suitable conditions which can be controlled easily for the growth of the plant and they are made by using a covering material that allows the sun light entering into the system. Covering material can be glass, fiber glass, plastic or another transparent element. This study investigates the solar energy usability rates and solar energy benefitting rates of a semi-spherical (modified arch) type greenhouse system according to different orientations and positions which exists under climatic conditions of Bayburt. In the concept of this study it is tried to determine the best direction and best sizes of a semi-spherical greenhouse to get best solar benefit from the sun. To achieve this aim a modeling study is made by using MATLAB. However, this modeling study is run for some determined shapes and greenhouses it can be used for different shaped greenhouses or buildings. The basic parameters are determined as greenhouse azimuth angle, the rate of size of long edge to short and seasonal solar energy gaining of greenhouse. The optimum azimuth angles of 400, 300, 250, 200, 150, 100, 50 m2 modified arch greenhouse are 90o, 90o, 35o, 35o, 34o, 33o and 22o while their optimum k values (ratio of length to width) are 10, 10, 10, 10, 6, 4 and 4 respectively. Positioning the buildings in order to get more solar heat energy in winter and less in summer brings out energy and money savings and increases the comfort.

Keywords: Greenhousing, solar energy, direct radiation, renewable energy.

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6 Intensive Biological Control in Spanish Greenhouses: Problems of the Success

Authors: Carolina Sanchez, Juan R. Gallego, Manuel Gamez, Tomas Cabello

Abstract:

Currently, biological control programs in greenhouse crops involve the use, at the same time, several natural enemies during the crop cycle. Also, large number of plant species grown in greenhouses, among them, the used cultivars are also wide. However, the cultivar effects on entomophagous species efficacy (predators and parasitoids) have been scarcely studied. A new method had been developed, using the factitious prey or host Ephestia kuehniella. It allow us to evaluate, under greenhouse or controlled conditions (semi-field), the cultivar effects on the entomophagous species effectiveness. The work was carried out in greenhouse tomato crop. It has been found the biological and ecological activities of predatory species (Nesidiocoris tenuis) and egg-parasitoid (Trichogramma achaeae) can be well represented with the use of the factitious prey or host; being better in the former than the latter. The data found in the trial are shown and discussed. The developed method could be applied to evaluate new plant materials before making available to farmers as commercial varieties, at low costs and easy use.

Keywords: Cultivar Effects, Efficiency, Predators, Parasitoids.

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5 Design and Development of a Mechanical Force Gauge for the Square Watermelon Mold

Authors: M. Malek Yarand, H. Saebi Monfared

Abstract:

This study aimed at designing and developing a mechanical force gauge for the square watermelon mold for the first time. It also tried to introduce the square watermelon characteristics and its production limitations. The mechanical force gauge performance and the product itself were also described. There are three main designable gauge models: a. hydraulic gauge, b. strain gauge, and c. mechanical gauge. The advantage of the hydraulic model is that it instantly displays the pressure and thus the force exerted by the melon. However, considering the inability to measure forces at all directions, complicated development, high cost, possible hydraulic fluid leak into the fruit chamber and the possible influence of increased ambient temperature on the fluid pressure, the development of this gauge was overruled. The second choice was to calculate pressure using the direct force a strain gauge. The main advantage of these strain gauges over spring types is their high precision in measurements; but with regard to the lack of conformity of strain gauge working range with water melon growth, calculations were faced with problems. Finally the mechanical pressure gauge has advantages, including the ability to measured forces and pressures on the mold surface during melon growth; the ability to display the peak forces; the ability to produce melon growth graph thanks to its continuous force measurements; the conformity of its manufacturing materials with the required physical conditions of melon growth; high air conditioning capability; the ability to permit sunlight reaches the melon rind (no yellowish skin and quality loss); fast and straightforward calibration; no damages to the product during assembling and disassembling; visual check capability of the product within the mold; applicable to all growth environments (field, greenhouses, etc.); simple process; low costs and so forth.

Keywords: Mechanical Force Gauge, Mold, Reshaped Fruit, Square Watermelon.

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4 The Influence of Thermic Plastic Films on Vegetative and Reproductive Growth of Iceberg Lettuce ‘Dublin’

Authors: Wael M. Semida, P. Hadley, W. Sobeih, N. A. El-Sawah, M. A. S. Barakat

Abstract:

Photoselective plastic films with thermic properties are now available so that greenhouses clad with such plastics exhibit a higher degree of “Greenhouse Effect” with a consequent increase in night time temperature. In this study, we investigate the potential benefits of a range of thermic plastic films used as greenhouse cover materials on the vegetative and reproductive growth and development of Iceberg lettuce (Lactuca sativa L). Transplants were grown under thermic films and destructively harvested 4, 5, and 6 weeks after transplanting. Thermic films can increase night temperatures up to 2 ⁰C reducing the wide fluctuation in greenhouse temperature during winter compared to the standard commercial film and consequently increased the yield (leaf number, fresh weight, and dry weight) of lettuce plants. Lettuce plants grown under Clear film respond to cold stress by the accumulation of secondary products (phenolics, and flavonoids).

Keywords: Photoselective plastic films, thermic films, secondary metabolites.

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3 Comparison of Different PWM Switching Modes of BLDC Motor as Drive Train of Electric Vehicles

Authors: A. Tashakori, M. Ektesabi

Abstract:

Electric vehicle (EV) is one of the effective solutions to control emission of greenhouses gases in the world. It is of interest for future transportation due to its sustainability and efficiency by automotive manufacturers. Various electrical motors have been used for propulsion system of electric vehicles in last decades. In this paper brushed DC motor, Induction motor (IM), switched reluctance motor (SRM) and brushless DC motor (BLDC) are simulated and compared. BLDC motor is recommended for high performance electric vehicles. PWM switching technique is implemented for speed control of BLDC motor. Behavior of different modes of PWM speed controller of BLDC motor are simulated in MATLAB/SIMULINK. BLDC motor characteristics are compared and discussed for various PWM switching modes under normal and inverter fault conditions. Comparisons and discussions are verified through simulation results.

Keywords: BLDC motor, PWM switching technique, in-wheel technology, electric vehicle.

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2 Approach to Implementation of Power Management with Load Prioritizations in Modern Civil Aircraft

Authors: Brice Nya, Detlef Schulz

Abstract:

Any use of energy in industrial productive activities is combined with various environment impacts. Withintransportation, this fact was not only found among land transport, railways and maritime transport, but also in the air transport industry. An effective climate protection requires strategies and measures for reducing all greenhouses gas emissions, in particular carbon dioxide, and must take into account the economic, ecologic and social aspects. It seem simperative now to develop and manufacture environmentally friendly products and systems, to reduce consumption and use less resource, and to save energy and power. Today-sproducts could better serve these requirements taking into account the integration of a power management system into the electrical power system.This paper gives an overview of an approach ofpower management with load prioritization in modernaircraft. Load dimensioning and load management strategies on current civil aircraft will be presented and used as a basis for the proposed approach.

Keywords: Load management, power management, electrical load analysis, flight mission, power load profile.

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1 Application of Robot Formation Scheme for Screening Solar Energy in a Greenhouse

Authors: George K. Fourlas, Konstantinos Kalovrektis, Evangelos Fountas

Abstract:

Many agricultural and especially greenhouse applications like plant inspection, data gathering, spraying and selective harvesting could be performed by robots. In this paper multiple nonholonomic robots are used in order to create a desired formation scheme for screening solar energy in a greenhouse through data gathering. The formation consists from a leader and a team member equipped with appropriate sensors. Each robot is dedicated to its mission in the greenhouse that is predefined by the requirements of the application. The feasibility of the proposed application includes experimental results with three unmanned ground vehicles (UGV).

Keywords: Greenhouses application, robot formation, solarenergy.

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