Development, Testing and Optimization of a Melon (Citrullus lanatus) Seed Washing Machine

Aremu, A. K., Akanji, A. I.b, Ajao, T. O.

Abstract

A melon seed (egusi) washing machine was designed, developed and evaluated for performance in coring edible melon seeds out of the pods, which are strenuous, time-consuming and tedious operation. The machine has a capacity to process 300kg of melon seed pulp in an hour powered by 2 hp, 1410 rpm single-phase electric motor. The melon seed (egusi) washing machine was made up of the following main units; hopper, washing chamber, bearing, screw conveyor, brush, electric motor and main frame which act as supporting base. The performance characteristics of the machine include: cleaning efficiency, output capacity and percentage seed recovery, were evaluated at three operating speeds (282, 325 and 423 rpm) and three feed rates of 2kg/60sec, 2kg/75sec and 2 kg/90sec. Each treatment combination was performed in triplicates making a total of 27 values. The minimum and maximum cleaning efficiency were 63.77 and 81.54 %, while minimum and maximum percentage seed recovery were 40 and 84 %. The minimum and maximum output capacity were 19.33 kg/hr and 44.47 kg/hr. Statistical analysis was performed with the use surface response optimization and all indicated that, the optimal value for speed and feed rate were 423 rpm and 0.033 kg.

Keywords: melon, melon pod, cleaning efficiency, operational speed, feed rate

How to cite this article: Aremu, A. K., Akanji, A. I.b, Ajao, T. O., Development, Testing and Optimization of a Melon (Citrullus lanatus) Seed Washing MachineJournal of Materials Engineering, Structures and Computation 1(1) 2022 pp. 59-68

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