Soil & tillage research vol:95 issue:1-2 pages:218-230
In most smallholder farms in Ethiopian highlands, farmers still use the wooden ard plough (Maresha). This study was undertaken to understand and optimise the traction forces provided by the draught animals. An ard plough equipped with three load cells (one on the beam and one on each side of the yoke) was implemented to measure traction forces required for tillage of four Vertisol fields under wet and dry conditions. Tillage was performed at three different depths of shallow (0-5 cm), medium-deep (5-10 cm) and deep (10-15 cm). The interpretation of force measurement was done for equally and unequally strong pair of oxen. After tillage, soil samples were taken for the determination of bulk density and moisture content. The cross-section area of furrow profile (CSAFP) and depth were also measured.