Effects of moisture content and level in the crop on the shearing properties of chickpea stem
The objective of this research was to determine the effects of moisture content and stem region on some physical and shearing properties of chickpea stems. The experiments were conducted at four moisture contents of 10, 15, 20 and 25% w.b. and at the bottom, middle and top regions of stem. For measuring the shearing forces, the stem specimens were severed by using a computer aided cutting apparatus. The shearing energy was calculated by using the area under the shearing force versus displacement curve. Based on the results obtained, the values of the stem physical properties increased with increasing moisture content. Their values also increased towards the bottom region. The shearing stress and the specific shearing energy increased with increasing moisture content. Their values also increased towards the bottom region of the stem due to the structural heterogeneity. The maximum shear stress and specific shearing energy were found to be 17.26 MPa and 34.81 mJ mm-2, respectively, and both occurred at the bottom region with the moisture content of 25% w.b.