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Evolutions in Mechanical Engineering

A Light-Weight Low-Speed Stirrer for Proper Mixing of Fertilizer and Water in a Small- Scale Automated Irrigation System

Submission: January 08, 2022; Published: June 27, 2022

DOI: 10.31031/EME.2022.04.000584

ISSN: 2640-9690
Volume4 Issu2


Proper mixing of fertilizer and water is a serious problem in a small-scale automated irrigated land observed during a visit to a farm in Kumpung Lumapas, Brunei. It is usually done manually and takes a lot of effort and time. An automatic low-speed and a lightweight stirring mechanism was designed, fabricated and installed to solve this problem using power from the same electric motor which are used to run the pump. The high speed of the rotating shaft from the existing pump was utilized and connected to a belt-pulley system to reduce its speed. The motor and pump unit were separated from direct coupling system and arranged in parallel with each other. Then, the shaft of the big pulley was linked to a speed reduction gearbox to further reduce the speed of the Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) connected to stirrer. The performance of the belt-pulley mechanism was tested and measured with a tachometer and the outcome was a speed reduction from 2900 to 13 revolution per minute. The efficiency of the motor was also tested with and without the load to the stirring mechanism, and it was found that 8% of the motor power needs only to run the stirring mechanism. The volume flowrate of the pump was also measured before and after the stirrer installation. It was found that it had no major effect on the flowrate with the difference of 2.4 litter per minute only. The proper mixing of fertilizer and water was not the only solution to clogging problem in fertigation piping system. Other clogging factors also contributed to the difficulty such as quality of the water and incompatibility of the fertilizer.

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