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Mechanization and automation for apple

Code: 9781838790097
Q. Zhang, M. Karkee and L. R. Khot, Washington State University, USA

Chapter synopsis: Sustaining large-scale commercial apple production depends on the availability of a large, seasonal and suitably skilled workforce. The costs and associated risks are dependent on human labor as well as overall productivity which could be reduced by improved mechanization of apple production operations. This chapter begins by reviewing the levels of mechanization that may be introduced into apple production and then considers a variety of mechanization solutions for each of the four key operations in apple production: training and pruning, thinning, pest and disease control, and harvesting. In each case, the chapter first considers those solutions which employ lower levels of mechanization, and then moves up to solutions which involve a higher level of mechanization, including automation and robotics. The advantages and disadvantages of each solution, and directions for further development are also discussed.

DOI: 10.19103/AS.2016.0017.14
Table of contents 1 Introduction 2 Levels of mechanization 3 Training and pruning 4 Thinning 5 Pest and disease control 6 Technologically-assisted apple harvesting 7 Robotic apple harvesting 8 Future trends and conclusion 9 Where to look for further information 10 References

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