Year of Publication

2014

Degree Name

Master of Science in Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering (MSBiosyAgE)

Document Type

Master's Thesis

College

Agriculture; Engineering

Department

Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Timothy Stombaugh

Abstract

Precisely measuring the flow rate in sprayers is a key technology to precision agriculture. With the development of advanced technologies, the demand for the ability to measure flow rate of individual nozzle has become more important and urgent.

This paper investigates the possibility of developing a low-cost flow rate measurement technique. The technique is based on analyzing the acoustic signal from a microphone placed near the nozzle tip. A comparison between acoustic signal and vibration signal was made to study the relations between them. Then several possible locations of the microphone for measuring flow rate were tested and compared, and one has been chosen as the best location. After that, two methods of analyzing data were proposed, one that could better describe the original curve was chosen. With all of that work done, further experiments were conducted on a variety of nozzle tips. The results showed that an acoustic sensor could be used as an indicator of flow rate from a nozzle, but that unique calibrations for different nozzle tips would be necessary.

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