John A. Smith

Emeritus Professor/Machinery Systems Engineer

E-mail:  jsmith5@unl.edu


EDUCATION/DEGREES

  • B.S. Mechanical Engineering
  • M.S. Agricultural Engineering


AREAS OF INTEREST

Farm machinery systems for field production of crops in the Panhandle of Nebraska. Particularly tillage, planting, and harvesting systems for sugarbeets and dry edible beans.


PROFESSIONAL SOCIETY MEMBERSHIPS

ASME, ASABE, ASSBT

RESEARCH INTERESTS

  • Machinery, plant characteristics and field conditions that affect dry edible bean direct harvest field loss.
  • Tillage or production systems that improve stand and crop yield for sugarbeets and dry edible beans.
  • Planter issues that influence seed spacing accuracy.

EXTENSION INTERESTS

  • Planter clinics using planter test stands to demonstrate planter issues that affect seed spacing accuracy, including field speed, meter adjustments, and seed tubes.
  • Field demonstrations, using full size equipment, that convey comparative machine performance of implements for operations including zone tillage, planting, direct harvest of dry edible beans, and sugarbeet harvesters.


MAJOR PROJECT ACTIVITIES

  • Direct harvest of dry edible beans including applications for furrow irrigation and cover crops, and influence of plant types (varieties) and row spacings.
  • Zone tillage for sugarbeet production, including appropriate depth of the zone tillage machine shank.
  • Seed spacing accuracy of row crop planters for sugarbeets and other precision planted crops. Includes evaluation on electronic planter test stands and in the field. Evaluation of planter meter mechanisms and other related components, including the seed drop tube.

INTERNATIONAL EXPERIENCE

  • Completed a six month sabbatical in England studying sugarbeet stand establishment with British Sugar Co.
  • Have traveled to England, France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, and Japan to observe sugarbeet production and specifically sugarbeet planters and harvesters.
  • Attended Agritechnica Farm Machinery Show in Hanover, Germany twice and SIMA 2009 International Agri-Business Exhibition in Paris, France.