Wear of Components in Rice Factories

Prof. Rob Dwyer-Joyce 

Dr. Roger Lewis

Buhler Sortex Ltd

Rice agriculture has been described as one of the most important economic activities on earth. With over 400 millions tonnes produced annually it is an exceptionally lucrative market.

However, with up to seven tonnes of rice processed every hour, rice de-husking machines are subjected to forces which make their rubber rollers wear out every few weeks.

Before developing more efficient rollers, it is necessary to first understand how the rice husk is removed from its grain.

This project has been designed specifically to investigate the process behind husk removal and the corresponding effect on machine components.

During de-husking a mixture of shearing and pealing occurs. Depending on where the process falls between these two mechanisms, the resulting coefficient of friction will differ. By understanding the exact process of de-husking, we can determine the optimum design of rollers and the forces they need to apply.

Working in conjunction with Buhler Sortex Ltd, the global leader in supply of industrial rice processing systems, we aim to develop a model which can be used to produce rice de-husking machines of optimum efficiency, taking full advantage of this abundant grain