1.1 Background to the Study
Groundnut (Arachis hypogaea) is a species in the
legume or beans family (Ashish and Handa, 2014; Atiku et al., 2014). It was first
cultivated in Peru. Its seed contain about 63% carbohydrate, 19% protein and
6.5% oil. Groundnuts are grown in tropical and subtropical climate regions and
warmer parts of temperature regions and it is low growing annual plant and has
a variety of uses. Prior to its usage
however groundnut need to undergo preprocessing which include drying and
shelling. Removing of kernels from the
pod is generally referred to as shelling or “decorticating” (Maduako et al., 2006). In Nigeria groundnut is mainly decorticate by
hands (traditional method). This method
is not hygienic as dirt from hands and mouth could pose health risk from the
nuts. (FAO. 2001).
Shelling is a
fundamental step in groundnut processing as it allows the kernel and hull to be
used as well as other post harvesting technologies to take place such as oil
extraction or in hull briquetting (Pradhana et al., 2010). Shelling is usually
carried out on the farm just before the farmer sells his product for the
following reasons: Kernel do not store as well as nuts in the shell and
groundnuts in the shell are fifty per cent heavier than kernels alone and
therefore costlier to transport. Shelling can generally be done by hand or
machine. Hand shelling is the process in which the pod is pressed between the
thumb and first finger so that the kernel is released. In mechanization now we use large and smaller
machinery for groundnut shelling. These machines are used in industries where
large production is required. There are different methods of shelling and
different machines have been fabricated and used to shell wide variety of crops
under different conditions (Nyeaanga et al., 2003., Atiku et al., 2004; Gitau et al., 2013; and Maduako et al., 2006). The peasant farmer
cannot afford this machine because they are too costly and complex in operation
and maintenance. Also the operator had
to be trained and spare part imported.
These factor increase the overall cost production which does not make
any economic sense to the farmer.
1.2 Statement of the Problems
that groundnut has an inherent poor storage life, if not threshed after
harvesting unlike some other crops, but in threshed forms, it can be stored for
a very long period of time (Onuoha 2010).
Therefore, to overcome the problem associated with manual threshing and quick
rate of insect infestation after harvesting, the development of groundnut
decorticating machine is of paramount. Traditionally the seeds are left in the
pods which would then be stored in a pot and would only be shelled when they
are needed for cooking (Ngugi, 2007),
shelling is one by hand or beating with a short stick or pestle and mortar,
followed by winnowing (Kaul and Egbo, 1985).
The constraints such as fatigue, high time energy inputs and inefficiency in
manual shelling of groundnut led to design and fabrication of pedal operated
groundnut Sheller that will go a long way in solving the problem of rural
farmers that are engage in groundnut production at small and medium scale
1.3 Objective of the Project
objective of the project is to design and fabricate a pedal operated groundnut
decorticator that will remove and separate the groundnut seed from the hull for
domestic and industrial uses.
The Specific Objectives are to:
physical properties of groundnut seed in relation to the design of pedal
operated ground decorticator.
fabricate a pedal operated groundnut decorticator
performance of the decorticator in terms of decorticating. Efficiency,
percentage of breakage, percentage of shelled seed throughput capacity.
1.4 Justification of the Project
Due to high
lose that are recorded due to lack of adequate power supply, these are expected
to be achieve at the end of the project. We can save the time and money by
using pedal operated groundnut decorticator, limited number of labour will be
required, groundnut will be available for domestic and industrial use. The fabrication
of the machine will encourage the farmers to grow more groundnuts.
would overcome the traditional method by reducing wastage due to crack or
crushed groundnut, to increase the efficiency, to reduce the hard work and to
reduced time to shell the groundnut, to develop a low cost machine which can be
used by farmer to convert their semi-finished (shell groundnut) into finished
product (groundnut) and it satisfies the need of village people to earn more
1.5 Scope of the Study
the sixth most important oil seed crop in the world and is widely cultivated in
Nigeria. The project work is limited to
groundnut seed. The variable factors to be considered in this study were feed
rate and characteristics of the operator (weight, height and knuckle length).
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