Combination Harvest and Bale Machinery’s Impact on Cotton Productivity in High Clay Cotton Fields of Northern NSW

Henderson, Adam (2022) Combination Harvest and Bale Machinery’s Impact on Cotton Productivity in High Clay Cotton Fields of Northern NSW. [USQ Project]

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This project aimed to explore the effects that combination harvest and baling machinery have on the compaction of a high clay soil common of the cotton industry in Australia and to investigate the effects it may have on overall cotton yield.

The project was comprised of two field trips to a research field at the Australian Cotton Research Institute near Narrabri, NSW: one before the 2022 harvest and one after. Soil samples were taking using a soil corer to depths of 80cm to create eight 10cm subsamples. These subsamples were analysed for bulk density and moisture content. Individual cores were also taken to record pH and electrical conductivity across the field to isolate them as variables. Penetration resistance was also recorded to depths across the field after the 2022 harvest to examine the difference in soil strength.

Cotton yield data was provided by the Australian Cotton Research Institute, which showed that the field that had been trafficked by the combination harvest and bale harvester did in fact have a lower overall cotton yield that the control section of the field. It was also observed that before harvest the field being trafficked by the combination harvester also had higher compaction indices, as well as having higher penetration resistance immediately after harvest. No overall statistical significance was observed in the difference in bulk density and moisture content between the two fields. As such, no concrete conclusions could be made as to the compaction effect of the combination harvest.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current – Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Engineering (1 Jan 2022 -)
Supervisors: Chen, Guangan
Qualification: Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Environmental)
Date Deposited: 18 Jun 2023 23:54
Last Modified: 20 Jun 2023 01:02
Uncontrolled Keywords: combination harvest; baling machinery; high clay soil; cotton industry; Australia

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