A prototype system for fully automated harvesting of burley tobacco has been developed and tested. Three years of field testing has shown that mechanical losses associated with the system were only slightly higher than via conventional methods. The system performed reliably at a sustained harvesting rate of approximately 1.4 ha/day (3.4 acre/day), while indicating that a rate of 2 ha/day (5 acre/day) should be easily achievable. The system is operated by two workers and reduces conventional labor requirement by approximately 80-85%.

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Published in Transactions of the ASAE, v. 33, issue 4, p. 1038-1042.

© 1990 American Society of Agricultural Engineers

The copyright holder has granted the permission for posting the article here.

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The investigation was conducted in connection with a project of the Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station and was funded in part by a grant from Philip Morris, USA.

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This document is published with the approval of the Director of the Agricultural Experiment Station as Paper No. 89-2-85.