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Unformatted text preview: Lecture 2 Types of Sprinkler Systems
I. Sprinkler System Categories
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• Two broad categories: set and continuousmove
Set systems can be further divided into: fixed and periodicmove II. Set Systems:
HandMove
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• very common type of sprinkler system
costs about $30  $90 per acre, or $75  $220 per ha
requires relatively large amount of labor
laterals are usually aluminum: strong enough, yet light to carry
usually each lateral has one sprinkler (on riser), at middle or end of pipe
to move, pull end plug and begin draining of line, then pull apart
lateral pipe is typically 3 or 4 inches in diameter
usually for periodic move, but can be set up for a fixed system
sprinklers are typically spaced at 40 ft along the pipe
laterals are typically moved at 50 or 60ft intervals along mainline EndTow
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• similar to handmove, but pipes are more rigidly connected
tractor drags the lateral from position to position, straddling a mainline
has automatically draining values (open when pressure drops)
pipe is protected from wear during dragging by mounting it on skid plates or small
wheels
least expensive of the mechanicallymoved systems
needs a 250ft (75m) “turning strip” about the mainline SideRoll
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• very common in western U.S.
costs about $150  $300 per acre, or $360  $750 per ha
wheels are usually 65 or 76 inches in diameter Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures Page 11 Merkley & Allen •
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• lateral is the axle for the wheels; lateral pipe may have thicker walls adjacent to a
central “mover” to help prevent collapse of the pipe during moving
uses “movers” or motorized units to roll the lateral; these may be mounted in middle
and or at ends, or may be portable unit that attaches to end of line
selfdraining when pressure drops
must drain lines before moving, else pipe will break
windy conditions can cause difficulties when moving the lateral, and can blow empty
lateral around the field if not anchored down
can have trail tubes (drag lines) with one or two sprinklers each
need to “deadhead” back to the starting point
mainline is often portable
has swivels at sprinkler and trail tube locations to keep sprinklers upright
low growing crops only (lateral is about 3 ft above ground)
can be automated, but this is not the typical case SideMove
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• almost the same as sideroll, but lateral pipe is not axle: it is mounted on A frames
with two wheels each
clearance is higher than for sideroll
not as common as sideroll sprinklers Gun
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• 5/8inch (16 mm) or larger nozzles
rotate by rocker arm mechanism
discharge is 100 to 600 gpm at 65 to 100 psi
large water drops; commonly used on pastures, but also on other crops Boom
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• have big gun sprinklers mounted on rotating arms, on a trailer with wheels
arms rotate due to jet action from nozzles
arms supported by cables
large water drops; commonly used on pastures, but also on other crops Other Set Sprinklers
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• Perforated Pipe
HoseFed Sprinklers
Orchard Sprinklers Fixed (SolidSet) Systems
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Merkley & Allen enough laterals to cover entire field at same time
will not necessarily irrigate entire field at the same time, but if you do, a larger
system capacity is needed
only fixed systems can be used for: frost protection, crop cooling, blossom delay
easier to automate that periodicmove systems
Page 12 Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures • laterals and mainline can be portable and above ground (aluminum), or permanent
and buried (PVC or steel, or PE) III. ContinuousMove Systems
Traveler
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• could be big gun or boom on platform with wheels
usually with a big gun (perhaps 500 gpm & 90 psi) sprinkler
long flexible hose with high head loss
may reel up the hose or be pulled by a cable
large water drops; commonly used on pastures, but also on other crops
some travelers pump from open ditch, like linear moves
sprinkler often set to part circle so as not to wet the travel path Center Pivot
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• cost is typically $35,000 ($270/ac or $670/ha), plus $15,000 for corner system
easily automated
typical maximum (fastest) rotation is about 20 hrs
don’t rotate in 24hr increment because wind & evaporation effects will concentrate
returns to starting point after each irrigation
typical lateral length is 1320 ft (400 m), or ¼ mile (quarter “section” area)
laterals are about 10 ft above the ground
typically 120 ft per tower (range: 90 to 250 ft) with one horsepower electric motors
(geared down)
IPS 6” lateral pipe is common (about 65/8 inches O.D.); generally 6 to 8 inches, but
can be up to 10 inches for 2640ft laterals
typical flow rates are 45  65 lps (700 to 1000 gpm)
typical pressures are 140  500 kPa (20 to 70 psi)
older center pivots can have water driven towers (spills water at towers)
end tower sets rotation speed; micro switches & cables keep other towers aligned
corner systems are expensive; can operate using buried cable; corner systems don’t
irrigate the whole corner
w/o corner system, π/4 = 79% of the square area is irrigated
for 1320 ft (not considering end gun), area irrigated is 125.66 acres
with corner system, hydraulics can be complicated due to end booster pump
center pivots are ideal for allowing for effective precipitation
ignore soil water holding capacity (WHC)
requires almost no labor; but must be maintained, or it will break down
can operate on very undulating topography
known to run over farmers’ pickups (when they leave it out there)!
many variations: overhead & underneath sprinklers; constant sprinkler spacing;
varied sprinkler spacing; hoses in circular furrows, etc.
sprinkler nearest the pivot point may discharge only a fine spray; constant radial
velocity but variable tangential speeds (fastest at periphery)
some center pivots can be moved from field to field Linear Move
• costs about $40,000 for 400 m of lateral Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures Page 13 Merkley & Allen •
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• field must be rectangular in shape
typically gives high application uniformity
usually guided by cable and trip switches (could be done by laser)
usually fed by open ditch with moving pump, requiring very small (or zero slope) in
that direction
can also be fed by dragging a flexible hose, or by automated arms that move
sequentially along risers in a mainline
need to “deadhead” back to other side of field, unless half the requirement is
applied at each pass
doesn’t have problem of variable tangential speeds as with center pivots IV. LEPA Systems
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• Low Energy Precision Application (LEPA) is a concept developed in the mid
to late 1970s in the state of Texas to conserve water and energy in
pressurized irrigation systems
The principal objective of the technology was to make effective use of all
available water resources, including the use of rainfall and minimization of
evaporation losses, and by applying irrigation water near the soil surface
Such applications of irrigation water led to sprinkler system designs
emphasizing lower nozzle positions and lower operating pressures, thereby
helping prevent drift and evaporative losses and decreasing pumping costs
For example, many center pivot systems with abovelateral sprinklers have
been refitted to position sprinkler heads under the lateral, often with lower
pressure nozzle designs
The commercialization of the LEPA technology has led to many modifications
and extensions to the original concept, and is a term often heard in
discussions about agricultural sprinkler systems
The LEPA concept can be applied in general to all types of sprinkler
systems, and to many other types of irrigation systems Merkley & Allen Page 14 Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures SoilWaterPlant Relationships
I. Irrigation Depth dx = MA D
Wa Z
100 (1) where dx is the maximum net depth of water to apply per irrigation; MAD is
management allowed deficit (usually 40% to 60%); Wa is the water holding
capacity, a function of soil texture and structure, equal to FC – WP (field
capacity minus wilting point); and Z is the root depth
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• For most agricultural soils, field capacity (FC) is attained about 1 to 3 days
after a complete irrigation
The dx value is the same as “allowable depletion.” Actual depth applied may
be less if irrigation frequency is higher than needed during peak use period.
MAD can also serve as a safety factor because many values (soil data, crop
data, weather data, etc.) are not precisely known
Assume that crop yield and crop ET begins to decrease below maximum
potential levels when actual soil water is below MAD (for more than one day)
Water holding capacity for agricultural soils is usually between 10% and 20%
by volume
Wa is sometimes called “TAW” (total available water), “WHC” (water holding
capacity), “AWHC” (available water holding capacity)
Note that it may be more appropriate to base net irrigation depth calculations
on soil water tension rather than soil water content, also taking into account
the crop type – this is a common criteria for scheduling irrigations through the
use of tensiometers II. Irrigation Interval
• The maximum irrigation frequency is: fx = dx
Ud (2) where fx is the maximum interval (frequency) in days; and Ud is the average
daily crop water requirement during the peakuse period
• The range of fx values for agricultural crops is usually: 0.25 < fx < 80 days
Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures Page 15 (3) Merkley & Allen •
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• Then nominal irrigation frequency, f’, is the value of fx rounded down to the
nearest whole number of days (
But, it can be all right to round up if the values are conservative and if fx is
near the next highest integer value
f’ could be fractional if the sprinkler system is automated
f’ can be further reduced to account for nonirrigation days (e.g. Sundays),
whereby f ≤ f’
The net application depth per irrigation during the peak use period is dn =
f’Ud, which will be less than or equal to dx. Thus, dn <= dx, and when dn = dx,
f’ becomes fx (the maximum allowable interval during the peak use period).
Calculating dn in this way, it is assumed that Ud persists for f’ days, which
may result in an overestimation if f’ represents a period spanning many days III. Peak Use Period
• Irrigation system design is usually for the most demanding conditions: • The value of ET during the peak use period depends on the crop type and on
the weather. Thus, the ET can be different from year to year for the same
crop type.
Some crops may have peak ET at the beginning of the season due to land
preparation requirements, but these crops are normally irrigated by surface
systems.
When a system is to irrigate different crops (in the same or different
seasons), the crop with the highest peak ET should be used to determine
system capacity.
Consider design probabilities for ET during the peak use period, because
peak ET for the same crop and location will vary from yeartoyear due to
weather variations. •
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• Merkley & Allen Page 16 Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures • Consider deficit irrigation, which may be feasible when water is very scarce
and or expensive (relative to the crop value). However, in many cases
farmers are not interested in practicing deficit irrigation. IV. Leaching Requirement
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• Leaching may be necessary if annual rains are not enough to flush the root
zone, or if deep percolation from irrigation is small (i.e. good application
uniformity and or efficiency).
If ECw is low, it may not be necessary to consider leaching in the design
(system capacity).
Design equation for leaching: LR = EC w
5ECe − EC w (4) where LR is the leaching requirement; ECw is the EC of the irrigation water
(dS/m or mmho/cm); and ECe is the estimated saturation extract EC of the
soil root zone for a given yield reduction value
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• Equation 4 is taken from FAO Irrigation and Drainage Paper 29
When LR > 0.1, the leaching ratio increases the depth to apply by 1/(1LR);
otherwise, LR does not need to be considered in calculating the gross depth
to apply per irrigation, nor in calculating system capacity: LR ≤ 0.1 : LR > 0.1
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Ea (5) 0.9 dn
(1 − LR)Ea (6) d= When LR < 0.0 (a negative value) the irrigation water is too salty, and the
crop would either die or suffer severely
Standard salinity vs. crop yield relationships (e.g. FAO) are given for
electrical conductivity as saturation extract
Obtain saturation extract by adding pure water in lab until the soil is
saturated, then measure the electrical conductivity
Here are some useful conversions: 1 mmho/cm = 1 dS/m = 550 to 800 mg/l
(depending on chemical makeup, but typically taken as 640 to 690). And, it
can usually be assumed that 1 mg/l ≈ 1 ppm, where ppm is by weight (or
mass). Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures Page 17 Merkley & Allen V. Leaching Requirement Example
Suppose ECw = 2.1 mmhos/cm (2.1 dS/m) and ECe for 10% reduction in crop
yield is 2.5 dS/m. Then, LR = EC w
2.1
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= 0.20
5 ECe − EC w 5 (2.5) − 2.1 (7) Thus, LR > 0.1. And, assuming no loss of water due to application nonuniformity,
the gross application depth is related to the net depth as follows: d = dn + (LR)d = dn
1 − LR (8) and, d= dn
= 1.25 dn
1 − 0.20 (9) See Eq. 5.3 from the textbook regarding nonuniformity losses. Sprinkle Irrigation Planning Factors
I. Farm Systems vs. Field Systems
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• The authors of the textbook only devote a few paragraphs to this topic, but it
is one of great importance
A complete understanding of the distinctions between farm and field systems
comes only through years of experience
Variability in design, operation and management conditions is limitless
“A poorly designed system that is well managed can often perform
better than a well designed system that is poorly managed” •
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• Farm systems may have many field systems
Planning considerations should include the possibility of future expansions
and extra capacity
Permanent buried mainlines should generally be oversized to allow for future
needs  it is much cheaper to put a larger pipe in at the beginning than to
install a secondary or larger line later
Consider the possibility of future automation
Consider the needs for land leveling before burying pipes
How will the system be coordinated over many fields? Merkley & Allen Page 18 Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures • What if the cropping patterns change? (tolerance to salinity, tolerance to
foliar wetting, peak ET rate, root depth, need for crop cooling or frost
protection, temporal shifting of peak ET period)
What if energy costs change?
What if labor availability and or cost change?
What if the water supply is changed (e.g. from river to groundwater, or from
old well to new well)?
What if new areas will be brought into production? •
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• II. Outline of Sprinkler Design Procedure
1. Make an inventory of resources
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• visit the field site personally if at all possible, and talk with the farmer
get data on soil, topography, water supply, crops, farm schedules, climate, energy,
etc.
be suspicious of parameter values and check whether they are within reasonable
ranges 2. Calculate a preliminary value for the maximum net irrigation depth, dx
3. Obtain values for peak ET rate, Ud, and cumulative seasonal ET, U (Table 3.3)
4. Calculate maximum irrigation frequency, fx, and nominal frequency, f’
• this step is unnecessary for automated fixed systems and center pivots 5. Calculate the required system capacity, Qs
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• first, calculate gross application depth, d
for center pivots use d/f = Ud, and T ≈ 90% of 24 hrs/day = 21.6 6. Determine the “optimum” (or maximum) water application rate
• a function of soil type and ground slope (Table 5.4) 7. Consider different types of feasible sprinkle systems
8. For periodicmove and fixed (solidset) systems:
(a) determine Se, qa, nozzle size, and P for optimum application rate
(Tables 6.4 to 6.7)
(b) determine number of sprinklers to operate simultaneously to meet Qs
(Nn = Qs/qa) (Chapter 7)
(c) decide upon the best layout of laterals and mainline (Chapter 7)
(d) Adjust f, d, and/or Qs to meet layout conditions
(e) Size the lateral pipes (Chapter 9)
(f) Calculate the maximum pressure required for individual laterals
9. Calculate the mainline pipe size(s), then select from available sizes
10. Adjust mainline pipe sizes according to the “economic pipe selection method”
(Chapter 10)
Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures Page 19 Merkley & Allen 11. Determine extreme operating pressure and discharge conditions (Chapter 11)
12. Select the pump and power unit (Chapter 12)
13. Draw up system plans and make a list of items with suggestions for operation
III. Summary
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• Note that MAD is not a precise value; actual precision is less than two
significant digits; this justifies some imprecision in other values (don’t try to
obtain very precise values for some parameters when others are only rough
estimates)
Why use f to determine Qs but f’ to determine net application depth?
(because Qs must be based on gross requirements; not irrigating 24 hrs/day
and 7 days/week does not mean that the crop will not transpire water 7
days/week)
When determining the seasonal water requirements we subtract Pe from U.
However, to be safe, the value of Pe must be reliable and consistent from
year to year, otherwise a smaller (or zero) value should be used.
Note that lateral and sprinkler spacings are not infinitely adjustable: they
come in standard dimensions from which designers must choose. The same
goes for pipe diameters and lengths.
Note that design for peak Ud may not be appropriate if sprinklers are used
only to germinate seeds (when later irrigation is by a surface method). IV. Example Calculations for a PeriodicMove System
Given:
Crop is alfalfa. Top soil is 1.0 m of silt loam, and subsoil is 1.8 m of clay loam.
Field area is 35 ha. MAD is 50% and ECw is 2.0 dS/m. Application efficiency is
estimated at 80%, and the soil intake rate is 15 mm/hr. Lateral spacing is 15 m and
lateral length is 400 m. Assume it takes ½ hour to change sets. Seasonal effective
rainfall is 190 mm; climate is hot. Assume one day off per week (irrigate only 6
days/week).
From tables in the textbook:
Hot climate, table 3.3 gives............Ud = 7.6 mm/day, and U = 914 mm/season
Top soil, table 3.1 gives ...........................................................Wa = 167 mm/m
Sub soil, table 3.1 gives ...........................................................Wa = 183 mm/m
Root depth, table 3.2 gives .........................................Z = (1.2 + 1.8)/2 = 1.5 m
Salinity for 10% yield reduction, table 3.5 gives ........................ECe = 3.4 dS/m
1. Average water holding capacity in root zone:
top soil is 1.0 m deep; root zone is 1.5 m deep... Merkley & Allen Page 20 Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures Wa = 1.0 (167 ) + (1.5 − 1.0 ) (183 ) = 172.3 mm/m (10) MAD
⎛ 50 ⎞
Wa Z = ⎜
(172.3 ) (1.5 ) = 129.2 mm
100
100 ⎟
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⎠ (11) 1.5 2. Max net application depth (Eq. 3.1): dx = 3. Maximum irrigation interval (Eq. 3.2): fx = dx
129.2 mm
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= 17.0 days
Ud 7.6 mm/day (12) 4. Nominal irrigation interval (round down, or truncate): f ' = trunc ( fx ) = 17 days (13) dn = f ' Ud = (17 days ) ( 7.6 mm/day ) = 129.2 mm (14) 5. Net application depth: 6. Operating time for an irrigation:
17 days is just over two weeks, and depending on which day is off, there
could be 3 off days in this period. So, with one day off per week, we will
design the system capacity to finish in 17  3 = 14 days. Thus, f = 14 days.
But, remember that we still have to apply 17 days worth of water in these 14
days (we irrigate 6 days/week but crop transpires 7 days/week)
7. Leaching requirement (Eq. 3.3): LR = ECw
2.0
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= 0.13
5ECe − ECw 5 ( 3.4 ) − 2.0 (15) LR > 0.1; therefore, use Eq. 5.3 b...
8. Gross application depth (Eq. 5.3b): d= 0.9 (129.2 )
0.9dn
=
= 167.1 mm
(1 − LR ) (Ea / 100 ) (1 − 0.13 ) (0.8 ) Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures Page 21 (16) Merkley & Allen 9. Nominal set operating time:
With 167.1 mm to apply and a soil intake rate of 15 mm/hr, this gives 11.14
hrs minimum set time (so as not to exceed soil intake rate). Then, we can
make the nominal set time equal to 11.5 hours for convenience. With 0.5 hrs
to move each set, there are a total of 12.0 hrs/set, and the farmer can
change at 0600 and 1800 (for example).
At this point we could take the lateral spacing, Sl, sprinkler spacing, Se, and
actual application rate to determine the flow rate required per sprinkler.
10. Sets per day:
From the above, we can see that there would be two sets/day.
11. Number of sets per irrigation:
(14 days/irrigation)(2 sets/day) = 28 sets
12. Area per lateral per irrigation:
Lateral spacing on mainline is Sl = 15 m. Lateral length is 400 m. Then, the
area per lateral is:
(15 m/set)(28 sets)(400 m/lateral) = 16.8 ha/lateral
13. Number of laterals needed: 35 ha
= 2.08 laterals
16.8 ha/lateral (17) Normally we would round up to the nearest integer, but because this is so
close to 2.0 we will use two laterals in this design.
14. Number of irrigations per season: U − Pe 914 mm  190 mm
=
= 5.6 irrigations
dn
129.2 mm/irrig (18) Thus, it seems there would be approximately six irrigations in a season. But,
the initial Rz value is less than 1.5 m, so there may actually be more than six
irrigations. Merkley & Allen Page 22 Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures 15. System flow capacity (Eq. 5.4):
with 11.5 hours operating time per set and two sets per day, the system runs
23 hrs/day... Qs = 2.78 ( 35 ha ) (167.1 mm ) = 50.5 lps (800 gpm)
Ad
= 2.78
fT
(14 days ) ( 23 hrs/day ) (19) This is assuming no effective precipitation during the peak ET period. Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures Page 23 Merkley & Allen Merkley & Allen Page 24 Sprinkle & Trickle Irrigation Lectures ...
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This note was uploaded on 03/01/2012 for the course BIE 6110 taught by Professor Sprinkle during the Fall '03 term at Utah State University.
 Fall '03
 Sprinkle

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