Agricultural Engineering applies the science and technology to agricultural production and processing. It combines the principles of animal biology, plant biology and civil, mechanical and chemical engineering principles with the knowledge of agricultural principles.
Agriculture is given the status of priority sector in the Indian economy because directly or indirectly more than 70% of the total work force is employed in this sector and it contributes to around 18% to the Gross Domestic Product. Former Prime Minister of India Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru once said that everything can wait but not agriculture as almost all rural population depends on agriculture and allied activities like animal husbandry, dairy, poultry and fisheries. India is traditionally an agricultural country hence the growth and development of Indian economy largely depends upon continuous growth of agriculture.
he application of engineering and science to the flying vehicles operating within and outside of the Earth’s Atmosphere.
Agricultural Engineers use their plethora of knowledge to solve the problems of both farmers as well as agricultural industry. They are responsible for manufacturing machinery for irrigation, drainage systems, floods and water control systems, perform environmental impact assessments, agricultural product processing and interpret research results and implement relevant practices.
Agricultural engineers utilize engineering technology and science for agricultural use by managing biological resources efficiently. Apart from creating new techniques in farming and agriculture, they also apply engineering design and analysis to protect animals and natural resources.
As an agricultural engineer, a person accepts the challenge to improve agricultural production by means of better engineering methods, inventions, technology and equipment. This requires a good intellect and a desire to make a difference to future of farming. The agricultural engineers invent new techniques to conserve soil and water and to improve the processing of agricultural products into value added agriculture products.
Educational Requirement: - A student has to pass the 10th standard board examination with 50% successfully to be eligible for a Diploma course. But if the student really dreams for a bright career in Agricultural Engineering then the need is go for a Bachelor’s degree –B.E/B.Tech. The eligibility criterion for a B.E./B.Tech is 50% marks in class 12th Board Examination with Physics, Chemistry and Maths as compulsory subjects and preferably Biology. Diploma Holders in Agricultural Engineering too can get direct admission in the second year of B.Tech course of Agricultural Engineering. A bachelor’s degree is required for an advanced course , M.E./M.Tech. A person can also aim for a PhD to do research on matters related with Agricultural Engineering. There is also a provision of Distance Education which helps in attaining a bachelor’s degree through Associate Examination of the Institute of Engineers (AMIE)
Selection: - The admission to the agricultural engineering course is very competitive. A student should pass IIT-JEE (Joint Entrance Examination) to attain admission in one of the prestigious IITs. This highly competitive test, checks student’s ability in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics and for other reputed institutions like NIT, one has to succeed in AIEEE(All India Engineering/Pharmacy/Architecture). Also, there is state level and national level examinations as some institutions opt for their own entrance examinations.
Duration : -
The B.E./B.Tech (bachelor’s degree) is a 4 year course in Agricultural Engineering. The person can proceed further for an M.E./M.Tech course which is of 2 years. The duration for the Diploma course in Agricultural Engineering is 3 years.
Different Branches –
The field of Agricultural is very interesting. If a student really wishes for a career in this field, the need would be to apply oneself. There are different disciplines of Agricultural Engineering and a person can select the right area according to the aptitude and no wonder the person can rise and shine in his professional life.
The various disciplines of agricultural engineering are -
1.Bioenvironmental Engineering – This discipline deals with the application of engineering principles to design, manufacture and test systems that provide the desired environmental conditions for animals, human housing, crop storage structures, green houses and other biological systems. Bioenvironmental engineers design equipment for heating, ventilating, air conditioning air quality control, and air quality control. They also develop systems to handle and invent treatment for bio-waste material.
2. Food and Bioprocess Engineering - This discipline of agricultural engineering deals with the application of engineering principles to the production, processing and packaging of food and bio-products. Food and bioprocess engineers design, develop and construct new processes, machines and plants. They develop and test new products as well as manage environmental factors, waste products and energy conservation.
3. Soil and Water Resources Engineering – Soil and Water Resource Engineering is the application of engineering principles and its practices to design and develop systems for natural resources. It also includes protection of environment by utilizing contour and other appropriate cultivation systems. Soil and water engineers design systems to control soil erosion, flooding and also develop irrigation, drainage systems. They also develop policies to handle storm water and control the movement of sediment in water systems.
4. Off-Road Equipment Engineering – Off-Road Equipment Engineering is the application of the principles of Engineering to design, manufacture and test equipment for the agricultural, construction, forestry and mining industries. Off-Road Equipment engineers develop precision machine systems that rely on advanced information, sensing technologies and a high level of automation control.
5. Agricultural Building and Structures – Agricultural engineering also involves Agricultural Engineers in building of Agricultural Structures. The Agricultural building and Structure Engineers are required to build well planned and functional structures. The buildings are needed for meat, poultry, eggs and dairy products, for the storage of grains, corns, maize, vegetable, milk and fruits etc. The Agricultural building and Structure Engineers also make structures like glass houses and plastic tubing for intensive vegetation.
6. Agricultural Electrification – Agricultural Engineers are also involved in electrification. They may also operate electric power system for a rural region. Agricultural Engineers are also in demand for the development or improvement of ways to use electric power for curing drying crops or dehydrating food.
Career Options for Agricultural Engineers : -
There are good job prospects for Agricultural Engineers. There is a good chance of succeeding in the conservation industry. Here the reuse of agricultural waste material is one of the most important issues. With the ever increasing world population, there is a great demand for farm products. This is undoubtedly a boon for the agricultural industry and especially Agricultural Engineers.
The global trend towards standardization of all agricultural products and equipment would lead to greater demand for agricultural engineers. The earth is going through a crisis which has led to stress on conservation of scare resources. Efforts are being made to achieve high efficiency in the agricultural industry. There is also an increasing demand of agro-products. All this has resulted in multiple opportunities for Agricultural Engineers. There are enough jobs for Agricultural Engineers even after their retirement as they can turn into consultants for big MNC companies.
A large percentage of agricultural engineers work in academia and government agencies and they are also employed for state agricultural extension services. Some agricultural engineers have a penchant for machinery and they may choose the field of designing equipment used in agriculture and construction. The machine manufacturing firms might employ them because of their expertise in crop handling, hydraulic power, crop handling or in growing special crops. Other agricultural engineers may enjoy construction work like designing buildings, storage houses or grains, livestock etc. And some other agricultural engineers might be interesting in developing systems for food processing such as drying processes, distillation or long term storage. Agricultural Engineers work in production, sales, management, research and development or applied science.
There is no doubt that students vying for Agricultural Engineering can expect a bright career ahead.
Salary – Salaries differ significantly with industry, education and experience like for any other engineering branch. The basic salary of an Agricultural Engineer in government institutions is Rs.10, 000 to 20,000 depending upon the seniority of a person. They can expect for a better remuneration in private sectors the range of Rs. 20,000 to 35000. If an agricultural engineer decides to open his own farm, there should be no disappointment as farms yield good benefits depending up on the size and dimension of the farm land.
There are also lots of opportunities abroad for Agricultural Engineers. Agricultural Engineers having a bachelor’s degree can begin with approx. $43,000 per year. An M.Tech Agricultural Engineer may earn up to $54,000 per year. Those persons with doctoral degree can bring in an annual salary package of $70,000.
This proves that Agricultural Engineering is the most interesting field in modern times. One can enjoy the company of nature as well as be satisfied that a person is creating a healthy with abundant resources for the world and in return gain good income. Indeed agricultural Engineering is a great career option.
The Best Agricultural Engineering Colleges in India are: -
- Punjab Agricultural University
- Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur
- College of Technology, Pantnagar, Nainital
- Sam Higginbottom Institute of Agriculture Technology and Science, Allahabad
- Rajendra Agricultural University, Bihar
- Agricultural Engineering College and Research Institute, Coimbatore
- Birsa Agricultural University, Ranchi
- Central Institute of Agricultural University, Bhopal
- CCS Haryana Agricultural University, Hisar
- Dr.A.S.College of Agricultural Engineering, Rahuri, Maharashtra
The Best Agricultural Engineering Colleges in
- University of Kentucky
- University of Arizona
- University of Florida
- University of Idaho
University of Illinois--Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL
- Iowa State University
- North Dakota State University
- North Carolina State University
- Penn State University
- Purdue University
Top Indian Firms for Agricultural Engineer –
- Rallis India
- Advanta India Ltd.
- National Agro Industries
- Rasi Seeds
- Mahindra Tractors
Top Global Firms for Agricultural Engineer -
- Archer Daniels Midland Company
- Caterpillar Inc.
- Bayer Crop Science