Document Type


Publication Date



Bioresource and Agricultural Engineering | Industrial Technology

Course Number and Title

TSM 416: Technology Capstone


Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering


Agricultural Systems Technology (Millers); Industrial Technology (Kosary, Gray)


Michael Anderson and Jacek Koziel

Problem Statement

o BioCentury Research Farm is an affiliate of Iowa State University and operates with the mission to support agricultural sciences and research in local regions. The Farm assembles parts for agricultural equipment.

o The BioCentury Research Farm (BCRF) is requesting paint booth modification. The current paint booth has an exhaust fan that is manually controlled. The fan is operated with an appropriate cycle of about 85% of the time. However, the other 15% of the time, the fan is either not used, turned off too soon, or left on too long.

o The issue has continued to waste time, affecting employee productivity. If parts aren’t dried or rotated in proper time, it will delay work cycles until the employee corrects the problem independently. Additionally, parts are not labeled with names or painting times.

o The coding of a programmable logic controller and installation of the corresponding fully integrated system is to be conducted by the capstone team to fit the requirements of the BioCentury Research Farm.

o Addressing the issue with the paint booth will remove manual labor costs by up to 30 minutes/day for BioCentury Research Farm.

o Improvements from this project will extend beyond the BioCentury Research Farm. Parts will be rotated more quickly and efficiently, empowering BioCentury Research Farm to serve at higher capacity to clients.