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Chapter One

THE PROBLEM AND ITS SETTING Introduction Rice (Oryza Sativa) is one of the most popular grains in the world. As a cereal grain, it is the most important staple food for a large part of the world's human population. Rice is a semi-aquatic plant that requires constant moist conditions for survival, thus rice can only be grown in certain regions like Philippines and other Asian countries. Yet it is relatively easy to grow and has great storing qualities. It is the grain with the third-highest worldwide production, after maize(corn) and wheat, according to data for 2009. (http As a durable crop that can be relied on to bring good harvest year in and year out, rice is grown in some 3.2 million hectares of land, providing livelihood to more than two million households engaged in rice-based farming, along with millions of farm laborers, and tens of thousands of merchants and traders. (http Rice also plays important macroeconomic and developmental roles but despite of its importance,the rice farmers remain poorer than other crop farmers for some reasons. Although the rice research community has been consistent on introducing different technology and techniques to provide this food for expanding population, challenges are still looming ahead, more rice must be produced on less land,less water, less labor and less cost. Globally, food supply is threatened by a growing demand to feed an increasing population in the face of scarcity in land and water resources. Thus, climate change is also a big challenge on providing this staple food especially in this tropical region.

The problem facing in Bicol Region, particularly in Albay, rice production is abundant but in recent years, due to the expanding population along with the climate change and hazards (floods,typhoons, La Nia and El Nia phenomenon), affects the rice production. Hence, due to climate change, a need to fabricate a small biomass reversible paddy dryer is highly essential in order to help the farmers to dry the paddy without the use of sun- drying method and different traditional drying methods. Aside from the rice postharvest operations (cutting,pilling,threshing,hauling,drying storing and processing), drying is the most important because drying is the process that reduces grain moisture content to a safe level for storage and it is the most critical operation after harvesting the rice crop. Although, the sun-drying and other traditional methods utilizes natural energy source and does not need to purchase machine and utilizes unskilled labor, it cannot be done during rainy season. With the lack of mechanical dryers, lossess will increase since the grains can deteriorate and germinate. In this present day civilization, there are dyer models that had been introduced and researched by concerned government sectors yet, the efficiency of the different dryer models are of different levels. There are dryer model that are too expensive and difficult to operate and it is difficult to promote to the guild of farmers and traders. Furthermore, the researcher aims to fabricate a small biomass paddy dryer.

Objectives of the Study

The general objectives of the study was to design,fabricate and to conduct a preliminary test to evaluate the performance of a small biomass reversible paddy dryer. Specifically, this study aimed to: 1. To determine the physical properties of rice and corn to be used in dring in terms of : 1.1 Bulk density, kg/m3 1.2 Moisture content, % 2. To evaluate the furnace performance in terms of: 2.1 Feeding rate, kg/hr

2.2 Spontaneous combustion time 2.3 Fuel consumption rate,kg/hr 2.4 Burning efficiency,% 2.5 Heat available, kcal/hr 3. Dtermine the dryer performance in terms of: 3.1 Drying capacity, kg/hr 3.2 Drying rate, kg/hr 3.3 Drying recovery, %, 4. Determine the physical Characteristics of the fresh and dried rice and corn samples such as: 4.1 Weight, kg 4.2 Moisture content, % 4.3 Bulk Density, kg/m3 5. Evaluate the quality of the dried product in terms of: 5.1 color 6. To assess and compare the drying parameters of the small reversible biomass paddy dryer, namely: 6.1 Drying rate, kg/hr 6.2 Moisture reduction rate, % 6.3 Moisture content gradient, % 6.4 Heat utilization, kcal/hr 6.5 Heating system efficiency, % 6.6 Drying efficiency, %

6.7 Drying system efficiency, % 7. Determine the fabrication cost of the machine 8. Determine the operational cost of using the small biomass reversible paddy dryer and test samples.

Significance of the Study

An average Filipino diet is based on rice. It provides half of our calorie requirements and onethird of our protein intake. Rice accounts for 20% of food expenditures for average households, which increases to 30% for households belonging to the bottom third of our society. Rice, as a food staple, is an economic commodity. It is both a major expenditure item and a source of income for many households. It is mainly cultivated by small farmers in holdings of less than 1 hectare. Rice is also a wage commodity for workers in the cash crop or non-agricultural sectors. Hence, the production of rice is affected by the erratic weather condition. Considering the importance of rice and the instantaneous changing of climate, the researchers fabricated a small biomass reversible paddy dryer in order to promote the drying technique introduced by Vietnam and Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) to the farmers as well as to justify the machine efficiency and the drying level of paddy than of the traditional drying method. This fabricated machine will also contribute to the laboratory learning of the BS in Agricultural Engineering Students in BUCAF as their medium in Engineering Process Laboratory and the like. This study will likewise serve as a reference for other researchers. Henceforward, development for the rice postharvest industry will contribute to the farmers, merchants, and traders as well as to the agricultural economy of our country which belongs Bicol Region.

Scope and Delimitation of the Study

This study was conducted at the Agricultural Engineering Department of Bicol University College of Agriculture and Forestry (BUCAF), Guinobatan, Albay from the month of April 2012 to October 2012. The study was limited to the fabrication, testing and performance evaluation of the Small Biomass Reversible Paddy Dryer (tons capacity). The machine will be fabricated in Bicol University College of Agriculture and forestry (BUCAF) Agro-Industrial Shop Machine Shop. The machine will be tested in terms of drying capacity, drying rate, drying recovery, moisture reduction rate, moisture content gradient, heat utilization, heating system efficiency, drying efficiency, drying system efficiency. On the other hand, further studies with regards to other rice postharvest stages, production, and other researchable area are not covered by this study. Fresh harvested paddy will be used throughout the study. Hence, the main focus of this study is to present the results of the performance evaluation and the accuracy of the fabricated small biomass reversible paddy dryer. The fabrication, actual testing, and evaluation of the machine will be guided by the working drawing and method of performance evaluation.