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Apparatus for Automatic Measurement of Kernel Weight, Length, and Thickness

Paige, D., Geng, S., Jongkaewwattana, S.
Crop science 1991 v.31 no.5 pp. 1314-1318
rice, Oryza sativa, seeds, length, measurement, automation, image analysis, image processors, computer software, computer hardware, width, thickness
Many plant research projects require the acquisition of kernel weight and size data. The lack of automated devices and software systems to measure individual kernel weight, length, width, and thickness restricts the number of samples that can be studied in a project, and compromises the quality of research. In this paper, we present a design approach and a prototype of an apparatus which can separate each kernel from a bulk sample, present it to an image analysis system, weigh it with a custom-designed mechanism, log the acquired data, and return the kernel to a collection vessel, all automatically. Results of testing three grain types of rice (L.) showed that the computer image data have a high degree of accuracy and precision. With suitable hardware modification for size differences and improved image processing software to eliminate kernel orientation requirements, there should be no impediment to developing a similar apparatus to measure other kernel types.