Introduction to Biosystems Engineering

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American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) in association with Virginia Tech Publishing, Virginia Tech Libraries

The discipline of Biosystems Engineering emerged in the 1990s from the traditional strongholds of Agricultural and Food Engineering with the goal of advancing engineering solutions toward creating a sustainable world with abundant food, water, and energy, while maintaining a healthy environment. While the discipline has continued to grow, so has the demand for quality educational resources that instructors can use to teach Biosystems Engineering courses. The publication of this book marks an important step in meeting that demand.

Introduction to Biosystems Engineering can be used as a customizable text for university-level introductory courses in Biosystems Engineering. Written by an international team of authors, the book is divided into six sections aligned with technical communities within Biosystems Engineering: Energy Systems; Information Technology, Sensors, and Control Systems; Machinery Systems; Natural Resources and Environmental Systems; Plant, Animal, and Facility Systems; and Processing Systems. Within the sections, individual chapters focus on discrete topics that can be covered in one week of class. Each chapter contains the expected learning outcomes, key concepts, applications of the concepts, and worked examples.

Introduction to Biosystems Engineering is available in print and online. The online version is freely downloadable as a complete work and as individual, stand-alone chapters. In addition, a parallel resource is in development—The Biosystems Engineering Digital Library (BEDL)—which will provide more teaching and learning materials for instructors to use in the classroom ( View the video about these projects.

Are you reviewing or adopting this book for a course? Instructors adopting or reviewing this text are encouraged to record their use on this form. This helps the book's sponsors to understand this open textbook's impact.

A planned successor volume, Introduction to Biosystems Engineering II, is in development, with new chapters being released starting in 2022. To access these chapters go to:

ISBN (PDF) 9781949373974 ISBN (print) 9781949373936 Click here to order a print version

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The work is published jointly by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) and Virginia Tech Publishing.

Virginia Tech is a member of the Open Education Network Publishing Cooperative.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS and DOIs Energy Systems Bioenergy Conversion Systems (Bioenergy_Systems) Biogas Energy from Organic Wastes (Biogas) Biodiesel from Oils and Fats (Biodiesel) Baling Biomass: Densification and Energy Requirements (Baling_Biomass)

Information Technology, Sensors and Control Systems Basic Microcontroller Use for Measurement and Control (Microcontroller) Visible and Near Infrared Optical Spectroscopic Sensors for Biosystems Engineering (Optical_Sensors) Data Processing in Biosystems Engineering (Data_Processing)

Machinery Systems Traction (Traction) Crop Establishment and Protection (Crop_Establishment) Grain Harvest and Handling (Grain_Harvest) Mechatronics and Intelligent Systems in Agricultural Machinery (Mechatronics)

Natural Resources & Environmental Systems Water Budgets for Sustainable Water Management (Water_Budget) Water Quality as a Driver of Ecological System Health (Ecosystem_Health) Quantifying and Managing Soil Erosion on Cropland (Soil_Erosion) Anaerobic Digestion of Agri-Food By-products (Anaerobic_Digestion) Measurement of Gaseous Emissions from Animal Housing (Gaseous_Emissions)

Plant, Animal and Facility Systems Plant Production in Controlled Environments (Plant_Controlled_Environment) Building Design for Energy Efficient Livestock Housing (Livestock_Housing_Energy)

Processing Systems Freezing of Food (Freezing_Food) Principles of Thermal Processing of Packaged Foods (Food_Thermal_Processing) Deep Fat Frying of Food (Frying_Food) Irradiation of Food (Food_Irradiation) Packaging (Packaging)

Accessibility note: The PDFs of this item are screen reader friendly, leveraging heading/structure and alt text for figures. However, mathematical equations are not accessible. Math is displayed as images and does not have alternative text.

Suggested citation: Holden, N. M., Wolfe, M. L., Ogejo, J. A., and E. J. Cummins. (2021) Introduction to Biosystems Engineering, ASABE and Virginia Tech Publishing., CC BY 4.0,

Biosystems engineering, Food and Bioprocessing, Environment, Buildings and Infrastructure, Information and Communications Technology and Data, Machinery Systems, Energy