Influence of Weather on the Predicted Moisture Content of Field Chopped EnergySorghum and Switchgrass
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© 2015 American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers. To determine the effects of weather on harvested moisture content (MC) of switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) and energy sorghum (Sorghum bicolor), tracking of harvest progress on individual fields in the Integrated Biomass Supply and Logistics (IBSAL) model was modified to allow: i) rewetting of swathed material in the drying formulae; and ii) field queuing rules based on equipment availability and weather. Estimated crop yield and initial MC by harvest date, as observed in field trials, along with the modeling of different delays between mowing and harvest allowed estimation of harvested MC, annual tonnage processed and associated processing cost differences by crop and location over 10 years. Extending the hours of annual equipment use had minor implications on cost of production. Energy sorghum proved difficult to dry in the field. Its higher yield, leading to shorter supply distance to the plant, may justify harvesting of energy sorghum early in the season with drier weather. Later harvest for lower-yielding switchgrass offers MC advantages.
author list (cited authors)
Popp, M. P., Searcy, S. W., Sokhansanj, S., Smartt, J., & Cahill, N.