Research Article: Statistical process control applied to mechanized peanut sowing as a function of soil texture

Date Published: July 24, 2017

Publisher: Public Library of Science

Author(s): Cristiano Zerbato, Carlos Eduardo Angeli Furlani, Antonio Tassio Santana Ormond, Lucas Augusto da Silva Gírio, Franciele Morlin Carneiro, Rouverson Pereira da Silva, Jorge Paz-Ferreiro.


The successful establishment of agricultural crops depends on sowing quality, machinery performance, soil type and conditions, among other factors. This study evaluates the operational quality of mechanized peanut sowing in three soil types (sand, silt, and clay) with variable moisture contents. The experiment was conducted in three locations in the state of São Paulo, Brazil. The track-sampling scheme was used for 80 sampling locations of each soil type. Descriptive statistics and statistical process control (SPC) were used to evaluate the quality indicators of mechanized peanut sowing. The variables had normal distributions and were stable from the viewpoint of SPC. The best performance for peanut sowing density, normal spacing, and the initial seedling growing stand was found for clayey soil followed by sandy soil and then silty soil. Sandy or clayey soils displayed similar results regarding sowing depth, which was deeper than in the silty soil. Overall, the texture and the moisture of clayey soil provided the best operational performance for mechanized peanut sowing.

Partial Text

The peanut is considered one of the most important crops among the leguminous species [1]. Peanut is recommended in crop rotation programs due to its short cycle (120–140 days) and capability to be fully mechanized. In Brazil, the peanut culture is rotated with sugarcane, especially in the region of Jaboticabal, São Paulo, where productivity has recently increased. The optimal agricultural crop rotation is essential to achieving the best production. To this end, the performance of the mechanized tractor-seeder must be optimized to increase operational quality and, consequently, to obtain a higher yield [2]. The seeders play an important role in the sowing process to ensure adequate plant population [3]. Soil provides a suitable environment for plant growth, especially in the germination phase [4].

The experiment was conducted during 2014 and 2015 in the peanut cultivation areas of the municipalities of Tupã (22°00’05″S and 50°33’02″W, 475 m above sea level), Dobrada (21°30’38″S and 48°28’09″W, 580 m above sea level) and Luzitânia (21°05’25” S and 48°16’00″W, 560 m above sea level), in the state of São Paulo, Brazil.

All soil types were stable from the viewpoint of statistical process control; that is, the values remained between the upper and lower control limits, even with natural process variability.

For the three textural classes of soil, all variables remained within the control limits.




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