Development of set-up for biopotential measurement on surface of fertilized eggs
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The fertility of broiler type egg has been a topic of research as a lot of resources go waste during incubation process. Identifying fertilized eggs from infertile early in an egg incubation process that takes around 21 days would result in tremendous cost savings since infertile eggs can be removed from the process and the extra space can be used for additional eggs. Also, contamination is a problem with infertile eggs since they are likely to harbor bacteria and molds that can contaminate other eggs too. Research has been going on in the said field from quite some time. Techniques like candling are available. During the candling process, after the fourth day of incubation, the egg is placed in front of a light source or candle and observed. An infertile egg is mostly clear while a fertile one has spider-like appearance. But the limitation is that this kind of manual process is prone to error. Imaging techniques were employed for the same task too, where the image of the egg under test is taken and two-dimensional contour data is generated. Thus, a method to determine fertilized eggs from unfertilized ones will allow saving of a lot of resources as the unfertilized eggs or the eggs with dead embryos can be discarded. In this research a non-contacting method of detecting the biopotential of a fertilized egg was tried. This would allow determining fertilized eggs from unfertilized ones and will result in saving of a lot of resources as the unfertilized eggs or the eggs with dead embryos can be discarded in earlier stage. This research was carried out in collaboration with Trek, Inc at UBTI/ Baird Research Park.