Agronomy and Horticulture Department


Date of this Version



Cereal Chem. 73(4):421-423


U.S. Government Work


A single kernel wheat characterization system (SKWCS) was recently developed by the USDA, ARS Grain Marketing Research Laboratory and is currently being marketed by Perten Instruments North America, Inc. This device has been shown to accurately measure individual seed hardness, moisture, and size of wheat. The objective of this study was to determine if the SKWCS technology could be applied to the measurement of sorghum grain. Grains from 64 sorghum plots grown at Mead, NE in 1992 were characterized using a prototype SKWCS at the USDA, ARS Grain Marketing Research Laboratory. Problems encountered were primarily associated with the single kernel feeder mechanism. Occasionally, two sorghum seeds were fed to the crushing device instead of a single kernel. These double sampling events were easily detected by examination of the size data, and software limits could be set to exclude such double sampling events from the data set. If broken seeds were not removed prior to measurement of the grain, errors in hardness and size values also occurred. These errors could usually be detected by examination of the data, and eliminated by adjustment of software limits. Inspection and hand cleaning of samples is highly recommended prior to characterization. Based on our results, SKWCS technology can be successfully applied to sorghum seed.