Palm sugar is proved to have benefits for the body. This made demands for palm sugar bigger at the international level. So, palm sugar production needs to be increased. Conventional production methods, however, pose a barrier in the production amounts.
Traditionally, farmers would climb a sugar palm tree one by one to get the juice of the tree. This method is time consuming and is not safe for the farmers. This is the main problem that are found among small scale companies or groups that run this business.
“The conventional method has actually threatened the lives of the farmers due to the low work safety. This is proven by the high rate of accidents when the farmers climb up or down the trees,” said Mas Fariz Fadlilah Mufid, Electronics and Instrumentation student of UGM on Thursday (16/6).
Together with fellow students, Asriawan Pasca Ramadhan, Kharisma Husna Wirasti, and Vita Nurul Faizah, he created a tool for tapping the juice of the trees to reduce the risk for accident among farmers as well as to improve production of palm sugar. This tool is named as “ALYA”; it can cut off the blossoms of the tree on top automatically without the need for the farmer to climb. He only needs to adjust the height and position of the arm of the tool horizontally, vertically, and radially in line with the blossoms to be cut, using the available buttons on the tool. Then, the farmer cut off the blossoms by activating the grindstone.
“This tool is equipped with IP Camera and Android tablet, hence the farmer can control it from the ground,” Fariz added.
ALYA is also equipped with juice containers that automatically see the volume of the juice in the container. Once it is full, LED lights and sounds are on. The juice is ready to be processed further.
“The end goal of the ALYA automatic tool is to get the sugar palm juice which is innovative, efficient, and practical, hence able to resolve safety issues among farmers and make them prosper as well as improve palm sugar production in Indonesia,” he said.