Jun 22, 2015

Posted by in Field visit day 1 | 0 Comments

Device for improving efficiency of labourers in Cotton picking

Banala Bhargava Reddy (Sri Aurobindo College, Delhi University), Rakesh Choudhary (NIT-Hamirpur), Ravi Sonkriya (IIT-Delhi)


Cotton is extensively grown in India. The growing of cotton includes several steps like sowing seeds, irrigating, picking & selling. Cotton picking is done mostly by hands in India primarily by women. One of our group member has personally experienced this problem as his parents are in farming. The main problem occurs in picking stage due to repetitive motion of hands, standing posture in hot conditions throughout the day. There are machines available in the market to harvest the cotton however these machines are not suitable for Indian context especially the type of cotton grown in dryland cotton. This report includes propose solutions aiming at improving the efficiency of the workers and reducing the drudgery.


The solutions are proposed after brainstorming & flow charting of individual ideas (see fig a-b). Human ergonomics, affordability and other functional aspects are kept in mind.




Our ideas were presented to Nathubhai Vader an innovator and farmer in Erwada village. Some are basically the same mechanism used in Nathubhai Cotton Picking machine instead the idea is to make it hand driven. The rotators will be fixed on the side of a cart and it is driven in between the lanes of the cotton.

The next day we have visited his workshop and discussed further on our ideas. He has demonstrated a model of cotton plant and illustrated the mechanism on which our model works & how the device should work. The cotton picking machine of Nathubhai was in the workshop so we have studied the whole process of that machine step by step.  We gathered some material required for the prototype in the workshop itself. We got a box made of iron. We fabricated it according to our design. Our design is at initial model stage and we are working on a prototype of our model (see fig a-c).

Problem Statements identified by Summer School Participants-

Problems faced by Labourers in cotton picking



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