Biological Systems Engineering


Date of this Version



A Thesis Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the degree of Master of Science, Major: Agricultural and Biological Systems Engineering, Under the Supervision of Professor Michael Kocher. Lincoln, Nebraska: December, 2011

Copyright 2011 Matthew T. Wold


Significant interest has developed in using cellulosic resources, especially crop residues, to create biofuels. Collecting these residues in a single-pass of the harvester across the field has the potential to be a low cost option. Two models have been developed; the first characterizes the in-field logistics of single-pass crop residue collection, the second the economics. These models allow the user to easily examine a wide variety of both grain-only and single-pass residue collection harvest cases. A variety of possible residue collection cases have been examined, and their effects both on harvester field capacity and harvest cost compared to grain-only harvest have been quantified. Systems where a harvester-towed wagon unloads collected residue directly at the field edge without any intermediary residue-hauling carts were generally the lowest cost. Cost-effective systems were shown to deliver crop residues to a biomass refinery at a mean cost of between $37 and $53 per metric dry matter ton depending on the acceptable reduction in harvester field capacity.

Adviser: Michael F. Kocher