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by جمعية المطاعنة لتنمية المجتمعات الزراعية
A leading NGO working in the field of cultivation and sale of Hibiscus in Luxor governorate is looking for an automatic machine that separates the hibiscus petals from the flower’s seeds to increase productivity and reduce the time wasted in the manual separation thus reduce the proportion of waste.
A call for power, control and mechanical automation engineers to design a machine that separates hibiscus petals from the seeds to ease the harvesting process for the workers and reduce the time and effort needed for the preparation of the crop for the following stages such as drying, for a chance to win 55,000 EGP as a reward provided by the Academy of Scientific Research and Technology in collaboration with Al Mata’na Association for the Development of Agricultural Communities. Please read on for more details!
The total harvest of the hibiscus is around 60 tons per year. The crop is usually distributed on the number of the ladies of the association who peel the hibiscus flowers and then place the petals on the roofs of the houses below the direct sun rays for drying, with a production rate of 0.5 tons per day. The process of separating the petals from the seeds of Hibiscus flower is currently done manually and it usually takes up to 4 months just to prepare the hibiscus crop for customer use .
In addition ,there is a large amount of waste produced along the different stages of the hibiscus preparation mainly consisted of seeds that can be replanted or used as fish feed after drying . On the other hand,the separation of petals causes several problems in the later stages of production due to the high expenses in order to provide a suitable number of workers to finish separating the desired amount of the crop produced.
The challenge is to design a machine that separates the hibiscus petals from its seeds to ease the harvesting for the workers and reduce the time necessary to prepare the crop, provided that the solution has the following criteria:
Improve the production capacity to reach at least 3 tons per day.
The machine should be eco-friendly and use the least possible amount of energy.
The separation process should be divided into two processes:
First the whole stem must be seperated from the flower itself.
The separation of seeds from petals.
Segregate intact seeds and assemble them efficiently (to be used for fish feed or to be replanted).
It's preferable that the machine would be mobile to reduce the time required to transport the crop from the field to the machine’s location.
The winner will receive a reward of 55,000 EGP provided by The Academy Of Scientific Research & Technology to implement the solution, in collaboration with Al Mata’na Association for the Development of Agricultural Communities, according to the following conditions:
The solution should meet the aforementioned criteria;
The solution should be provided as a prototype design that serves as a proof of concept;
The solution should include a clear plan of action including implementation stages, timeline, required tools/materials, estimated budget, and technical support required (if applicable);
The reward will be given in installments, in accordance to milestones set by the innovator(s) according to their plan of action;
As per our platform Terms and conditions, in case the intellectual property rights are not registered, the innovator should include the minimum details required to judge the technical validity and feasibility of the solution without full technical specifications.
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