Skip to Main Content
A simple, low cost instrument that measures impedance and phase angle was used along with a parallel-plate capacitance system to estimate the moisture content (MC) of six types of wheat. Moisture content of grain is important and is measured at various stages of their processing and storage. A sample of about 150 g of wheat was placed separately between a set of parallel plate electrodes and the impedance and phase angle of the system were measured at frequencies 1 and 5 MHz. A semi-empirical equation was developed using the measured impedance and phase angle values, and the computed capacitance, and the MC values obtained by standard air-oven method. Multi Linear Regression (MLR) method was used for the empirical equation development using statistical software. In the present work, a low-cost impedance analyzer designed and assembled in our laboratory was used to measure the impedance and phase angles. MC values of wheat samples in the moisture range of 9% to 25%, not used in the calibration, were predicted by the equations and compared with their standard air-oven values. For over 97% of the samples tested from the six varieties of wheat, the predicted MC values were within 1% of the air-oven values. This method, being nondestructive and rapid, will have considerable application in the drying and storage processes of wheat and similar field crops.