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Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering


FABE Post-Doctoral Scholar Places First in the 2023 CFAES Research Forum and Poster Competition

May. 12, 2023
Dr. Javier Campos presenting his poster at the 2023 CFAES Research Forum Poster Competition

Dr. Javier Campos, a post-doctoral scholar in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering (FABE), placed first in the "Postdoc" category at the 2023 CFAES Research Forum Poster Competition in March for his project, "Air-pinch PWM valve: An alternative to implement variable rate pesticide spray applications."

The CFAES Research Forum and Poster Competition is an annual event organized as a part of the Celebration of Research Week across the Columbus and Wooster CFAES campuses. The event is organized to honor and appreciate the broad range of research conducted at different academic levels in the college, including undergraduate students, graduate students, postdoctoral scholars, and research scientists. Multiple judges evaluate each poster as part of a competition to highlight some of the most impressive research currently being conducted in the college.

Dr. Campos with CFAES Associate Dean of Research and Graduate Education Gary Pierzynski Dr. Campos' winning project seeks to address the problem that certain pesticide compositions can get stuck inside electric pulse width modulation (PWM) solenoid valves, commonly used to control the flow of spray nozzles for precise applications.

To address this issue, a new type of valve called an air-piloted PWM pinch valve was tested. This valve allows the spray solution to pass through a flexible tube instead of directly contacting the valve components, which prevents the pesticides from causing malfunctions. Tests were conducted to compare the performance of this new valve with a conventional electric PWM valve. 

Overall, the air-piloted PWM valve shows potential as an alternative for accurately applying pesticides with specific formulations that can cause issues with traditional valves.

Dr. Campos’ research project is jointly supervised by FABE Professor Dr. Erdal Ozkan and USDA-ARS staff including Dr. Heping Zhu and Dr. Hongyoung Jeon (adjunct FABE faculty) housed in the FABE building in Wooster where Dr. Campos resides. 

"Since [Dr. Campos] joined us, he has been contributing to our research team by doing some pioneering work that has never been conducted anywhere in the world," said Dr. Ozkan. "Our research team is happy to see that his excellent work is also recognized by the judges who saw his impressive poster and appreciated the way he presented his work to them and others who attended the poster competition."

Dr. Campos joined the department in August 2021, and his graduate research areas include variable rate application of pesticides, remote sensing and GIS, and precision agriculture. He received his Ph.D. from Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain. 

Congratulations to Dr. Campos for this very exciting accomplishment!

View Dr. Campos' award-winning poster here.