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A clod crusher-elevator was developed to operate at the end of the primary conveyor of a potato harvester. The mechanism was designed to accelerate the material leaving the primary bed while exerting pressure on the mixture in order that soil clods would be broken into smaller sizes that would fall through the slots of the succeeding conveyors. During the process, the potatoes were elevated an additional 1.7 m by the first prototype and 1.0 m by the second prototype when compared to the conventional system. The mechanism successfully reduced the amount of clods by 79.9% as compared to a conventional primary and cross conveyor arrangement. The amount of soil that was recovered with the potatoes was also reduced (48.6%) when the clod crusher-elevator was utilized. However, the level of mechanical injury imparted to the potatoes increased by 69.8% when the mechanism was used.
G.c. MISENER and L.P. McMILLAN 1996. A belt-roller mechanism for soil clod reduction on a potato harvester. Canadian Agricultural Engineering (4):311-314.
Canadian Society for Bioengineering