Optimizing a Cassava Press Bar

May '18

The findings of this project were delivered to a Ghana-based program in the process of designing  a cheaper, more durable cassava press for agrarian stakeholders in rural Ghana. A large component of this project involved testing loads and stresses on select economic metals, with substantial aid from SOLIDWORKS' finite element analysis solver.

Cassava Press Bar

My partner and I were tasked with finding an optimal design for a locking bar found on an existing cassava press design. It looks much like a sideways T, where one beam is vertical and another is horizontal. The horizontal beam fits into a pocket cut out on the vertical member, which creates a lock. This setup is used to de-water cassava by pressing on the horizontal member. 

After conducting research into stock availability in Ghana (to forego importation costs), we were left with a couple of configurations to choose from. We ran simulations with accurate material properties and dimensions of available stock, and tabled our results.

Report below: