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As we are preparing for harvest, many of us are also evaluating the performance of the sprinkler packages on our center pivot irrigation systems. Checking for wear or failures in the devices, checking pressures and flows against the original package design, evaluating pumping plant performance, etc. are all essential for maintaining efficient irrigation. But, what about evaluating the design of the center pivot sprinkler package itself? There are many ways that the design of the package might not be optimal for your particular field or cropping system.
One major example that we see on a regular basis is that of “streaking” in the field. The overlap of the sprinkler-wetted pattern is key to a uniform application. Streaking occurs when that overlap is insufficient, creating dry “rings” in the crop. With the rise in popularity of drones for checking your fields during the growing season, we are seeing more and more images like the following showing up; and, if caught soon enough, the issue may be remedied in time to mitigate yield losses.
You can see that the field pictured above is filled with concentric rings where either the pivot irrigation system sprinklers were spaced too far apart to begin with, or there is too much tall crop interfering with the overlap of the sprinklers. This can lead to a significant percentage of loss in yield, especially in small fields such as this; but, even on larger systems where spacing has been designed to be wide in the first few spans, you still may see streaking on up to or more than half of the center pivot.
Streaking like this can occur for a few reasons:
If you are working with your dealer to design a new sprinkler package for your pivot irrigation system, here are some things to consider to avoid streaking issues:
Following these steps will help to reduce or eliminate yield losses to streaking, which one less thing to worry about when you climb into your combine this fall!
Talk to your local Valley dealer to ensure you're getting the most out of your sprinkler package.
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About Komet Irrigation
We believe that in today’s world, rather than inventing new promises, it is far more important to respect, uphold and build on the customer promises that our company was founded on. In addition to providing the highest quality irrigation equipment, we want to make sure our customers have water application products that operate at the highest levels of efficiency and effectiveness, which in turn will help to limit the waste of our natural resources.
We believe in building long lasting relationships with our customers. This gives us the opportunity to understand their needs, analyze how our products are meeting those needs, and to continue to improve. We believe in what we do, and are passionate about how we do it.
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