Now, a remote-operated coconut plucker

via Kalathil Ramakrishnan - Express News Service published on June 2, 2011

KASARGOD: A remote controller-operated coconut climbing machine, invented by Prakasan Thattari, a farmer-scientist from Kozhikode, attracted a lot of curiosity among agriculturalists and farm scientists at the Krishi Vignan Kendra of the Central Plantation Crops Research Institute here where it was demonstrated by its inventor on Tuesday.

The machine, invented by using the theory of robotics, mechanical and electrical engineering, will climb the coconut tree in a zigzag way. It works on a rechargeable battery or power backup generator. The device is made to climb even a 100-foot tall coconut tree.

Prakasan Thattari, a physics graduate who had retired from the Department of Commercial Taxes two years ago, hit upon the idea to manufacture a coconut climbing machine after the success of the one he had made to pluck arecanuts. It was a device which works on the principle of a simple rope and pully.

He was also motivated by the fact that the entire state was experiencing a shortage of coconut climbers.

“The robot I made was a prototype and I plan to make another one which would remove the defects of the old machine which was manufactured two years ago,” he says.

The material cost was only Rs 15,000, says Prakasan. He is optimistic that he can make the machine, which weighs only 9 kg, at a cheaper cost. He has received patent for his invention.

When the climbing machine reaches the top of the coconut tree, the remote controller activates the cutting devise. The remote controller can rotate and control the up-down movement of the plucking machine.

“It is an innovative idea.Prakasan needs a lot of encouragement” says Manoj Kumar of the Krishi Vignan Kendra.

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