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Evaluation of a solar crop dryer for rural applications in Nigeria,

I.N. Itodo
S.E. Obetta
A.A. Satimehin


This work is an attempt to exploit the benefits of using forced convection dryers in rural Nigeria by using a photovoltaic powered direct current backward curved centrifugal fan in an indirect solar crop dryer targeted at the subsistent small-scale farmers, who constitute over 90% of the Nigerian farming population. The drying rate, collector and system drying efficiencies were used to evaluate the dryer performance. Temperatures and relative humidity were measured. Corn was dried until no further weight loss occurred. The drying rate of the dryer was 0.74kg/day. The collector and system drying efficiencies were 12% and 10% respectively. The next effort in the development and application of this dryer will be to modify it and obtain better throughput and efficiencies, thereby improving the lot of the rural poor farmers and stimulating the Nigerian economy.

(Botswana Journal of Technology: 2002 11(2): 58-62)