Microirrigation for Crop Production - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780444506078, 9780080465814

Microirrigation for Crop Production, Volume 13

1st Edition

Design, Operation, and Management

Series Volume Editors: Freddie R. Lamm James E. Ayars Francis S. Nakayama
Hardcover ISBN: 9780444506078
eBook ISBN: 9780080465814
Imprint: Elsevier Science
Published Date: 28th September 2006
Page Count: 642
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Table of Contents

I. MICROIRRIGATION THEORY AND DESIGN PRINCIPLES CHAPTER 1. INTRODUCTION 1.1. DEFINITION 1.2. HISTORY AND CURRENT STATUS 1.2.1. Early History Worldwide 1.2.2. Early History in United States 1.2.3. Current Irrigated Area 1.2.4. Principal Crops Utilizing Microirrigation 1.2.5. Trends 1.2.6. Economics 1.2.7. Expansion in Developing Countries 1.3. GENERAL PRINCIPLES 1.3.1. Advantages Increased water use efficiency Improved crop yields and quality Reduced nonbeneficial use Reduced deep percolation Use of saline water Improved fertilizer and other chemical application Decreased energy requirements Improved cultural practices Use of biological effluent and treated wastewaters 1.3.2. Disadvantages Extensive maintenance requirements Salt accumulation near plants Restricted root development High system costs Restricted crop rotation 1.3.3. System Considerations Design and installation considerations Maintenance considerations Management considerations Economic considerations System costs 1.4. SYSTEM COMPONENTS 1.4.1. Emission Devices 1.4.2. Distribution System 1.4.3. Control and Automation 1.4.4. Filtration 1.5. SYSTEM TYPES 1.5.1. Surface Drip Irrigation 1.5.2. Subsurface Drip Irrigation 1.5.3. Bubbler Irrigation 1.5.4. Microsprinkler Irrigation REFERENCES CHAPTER 2. SOIL WATER CONCEPTS 2.1. INTRODUCTION 2.1.1. Soil Water Regime for High Frequency Irrigation 2.2. SOIL WATER 2.2.1. Soil Water Content 2.2.2. Soil Water Potential 2.2.3. Soil Water Characteristic Curves 2.2.4. Soil Water Measurements Gravimetric determination of soil water content Neutron scattering Time domain reflectometry (TDR) Tensiometers Heat dissipation Electrical resistance Capacitance 2.3. SOIL WATER MOVEMENT 2.3.1. Darcy’s Law Alternative forms for Darcy’s Law 2.3.2. Richards’ Equation 2.3.3. Measurements of Soil Hydraulic Parameters Direct measurements Indirect measurements Inverse methods 2.3.4. Shortcuts with Pedotransfer Functions 2.4. MODELING FOR EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT AND DESIGN 2.4.1. Simplified Hemispherical Model 2.4.2. Quasi-Linear Solutions to Richards’ Equation Steady state solutions for point sources Steady state solutions for surface ponding Steady state solutions for line sources Transient (time-dependent) solutions 2.4.3. Root Water Uptake Transient two and three-dimensional uptake functions 2.4.4. Influence of Soil Spatial Variability on Soil Water Distribution ACKNOWLEDGMENTS LIST OF TERMS AND SYMBOLS REFERENCES CHAPTER 3. IRRIGATION SCHEDULING 3.1. INTRODUCTION 3.1.1. System Capacity 3.1.2. System Uniformity Effects on Scheduling 3.1.3. System Maintenance Effects on Scheduling 3.1.4. Scheduling Constraints 3.2. IRRIGATION SCHEDULING TECHNIQUES 3.2.1 Water Balance (Evapotranspiration Base) Climatic factors affecting crop water use Crop factors affecting ET Soil factors affecting ET A direct ET approach Evaporation pans and atmometers Scheduling principles using evapotranspiration 3.2.2. Soil Water Control Soil water measurement and controls Placement and implementation 3.2.3. Plant Water Deficit Indicators Irrigation scheduling feedback loop using plant stress indicators Plant water potential measurements Plant size changes from plant-water stress Plant stress based on plant temperature Transpiration measurements by sap flow 3.3. SUMMARY LIST OF TERMS AND SYMBOLS REFERENCES CHAPTER 4. SALINITY 4.1. INTRODUCTION 4.2. QUANTIFYING SALINITY AND SODICITY 4.2.1. Salinity 4.2.2. Sodicity 4.3. CROP TOLERANCE 4.3.1. Crop Salt Tolerance 4.3.2. Factors Modifying Salt Tolerance 4.3.3. Tolerance to Specific Solutes 4.4. LEACHING 4.4.1. Leaching Requirement 4.4.2. Impact of Rainfall 4.5. INFLUENCES OF IRRIGATION SYSTEM AND WATER SOURCE ON SOIL SALINITY 4.5.1. Influence of Irrigation Method 4.5.2. Reuse and Conjunctive Use of Waters Reuse Blending Cycling 4.5.3. Environmental Consequences 4.6. SALINITY MANAGEMENT PRACTICES 4.6.1. Soil Salinity Distribution 4.6.2. Crop Considerations Crop selection Other management techniques 4.6.3. Infiltration 4.6.4. Reclamation of Salt-Affected Soils Saline soils Sodic soils Boron leaching 4.7. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS REFERENCES CHAPTER 5. GENERAL SYSTEM DESIGN PRINCIPLES 5.1. OVERVIEW OF THE DESIGN PROCESS 5.1.1. Initial Assessment 5.1.2. Microirrigation Layout and Components 5.1.3. The Design Process 5.2. SOURCES OF WATER 5.2.1. Water Quantity and Quality 5.2.2. Groundwater 5.2.3. Surface Water 5.3. SYSTEM HYDRAULICS 5.3.1. Hydraulic Principles Total head Pump energy requirements Total friction head Pipeline friction head loss Multiple outlet pipes Fitting, valve and component losses Emitter connection losses 5.3.2. Emitter Hydraulics 5.3.3. Microirrigation Lateral Lines Lateral line design procedures 5.3.4. Manifolds 5.3.5. Mainline Pipe System Design 5.4. FILTRATION 5.5 SUMMARY OF THE DESIGN PROCESS ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS LIST OF TERMS AND SYMBOLS REFERENCES SUPPLEMENTAL READING CHAPTER 6. ECONOMIC IMPLICATIONS OF MICROIRRIGATION 6.1. INTRODUCTION 6.1.1. The Farm-Level Perspective 6.1.2. The Public Perspective 6.2. FARM-LEVEL COSTS OF MICROIRRIGATION 6.2.1. Fixed and Variable Costs 6.2.2. Examples from the Literature Irrigating vegetables in Florida Irrigating field crops with subsurface drip irrigation systems Other examples 6.3. FARM-LEVEL BENEFITS OF MICROIRRIGATION 6.3.1. Crop Yield Effects Deciduous fruits and nuts Citrus Small fruits Tomato Melons Other fruits and vegetables Cotton Sugarcane and sugarbeets 6.3.2. Frost and Freeze Protection with Microsprinklers 6.3.3. Fertigation 6.3.4. Chemical Application of Non-Fertilizer Materials 6.3.5. Irrigation with Saline Water and Effluent 6.4. FARM-LEVEL OBSERVATIONS 6.5. PUBLIC BENEFITS AND POLICY IMPLICATIONS 6.6. SUMMARY ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS REFERENCES II. OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE PRINCIPLES CHAPTER 7. AUTOMATION 7.1. INTRODUCTION 7.2. CONTROL THEORY 7.2.1. Control Methods On-off control Stepwise control Continuous control 7.2.2. Linear Systems 7.3. AUTOMATIC CONTROL SYSTEMS 7.3.1. Soil Water Methods Soil water potential Soil water content Wetting front detection 7.3.2. Plant Water Methods Leaf water potential method Plant canopy temperature method Plant turgor methods Evapotranspiration estimates Evapotranspiration models Direct measurement of Etc 7.4. INSTRUMENTATION AND HARDWARE 7.4.1. Controllers 7.4.2. Valves 7.4.3. Flowmeters 7.4.4. Environmental Sensors 7.4.5. Filters 7.4.6. Chemical Injectors 7.5. SUMMARY REFERENCES CHAPTER 8. APPLICATION OF CHEMICAL MATERIALS 8.1. INTRODUCTION 8.1.1. Definitions 8.1.2. Basic Information 8.1.3. Advantages of Chemigation 8.1.4. Disadvantages of Chemigation 8.1.5. Types of Agrochemicals Water soluble chemicals Wettable powders Emulsifiable (oil soluble) chemicals Gases 8.1.6. Safety Following the label and other regulations 8.1.7. General Considerations Problems with chemical mixes 8.2. CHEMICAL INJECTION METHODS 8.2.1. Injection Pumps and Systems 8.2.2. Pollution Prevention Electrical and mechanical interlock system Backflow prevention in the irrigation line Injection line components 8.2.3. Chemical Supply Tanks and Secondary Containment 8.2.4. Corrosion Resistance of Surfaces 8.2.5. Maintenance 8.3. CHEMICALS AND CALCULATION OF INJECTION RATES 8.3.1. Fertigation Calculation of plant nutrient requirements Fertilizer selection and calculation of injection rates 8.3.2. Chemigation of Non-Fertilizer Materials REFERENCES CHAPTER 9. APPLICATION OF BIOLOGICAL EFFLUENT 9.1. INTRODUCTION 9.1.1. Advantages of Applying Biological Effluent 9.1.2. Disadvantages of Applying Biological Effluent 9.2. CHARACTERISTICS OF BIOLOGICAL EFFLUENTS 9.2.1. Effluent Source and Degree of Treatment 9.2.2. Composition of Effluent 9.2.3. Characteristics of Effluents Used in Some Microirrigation Studies 9.3. BIOLOGICAL EFFLUENT CONSTITUENT BEHAVIOR IN SOILS 9.3.1. Nitrogen Uptake by Plants and Potential Loss Mechanisms 9.3.2. Phosphorus Uptake by Plants and Potential Loss Mechanisms 9.3.3. Trace Element Uptake by Plants and Potential Loss Mechanisms 9.3.4. Salinity Management 9.3.5. Pathogenic Organisms 9.4. HEALTH CONSIDERATIONS 9.4.1. Typical Regulations 9.4.2. Practices to Meet the Regulations 9.5. SITE CONSIDERATIONS 9.5.1. Soils 9.5.2. Climate 9.5.3. Crops 9.5.4. Land Area 9.6. DESIGN AND MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS 9.6.1. System Components 9.6.2. Filtration Requirements 9.6.3. Chemical Treatment Requirements 9.6.4. Dripline Flushing 9.6.5. Monitoring Procedures ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS REFERENCES CHAPTER 10. FIELD PERFORMANCE AND EVALUATION 10.1. INTRODUCTION 10.1.1. Uniformity of Water Application 10.1.2. Order of Significance of Design Parameters 10.1.3. The Goal of Microirrigation Application 10.2. VARIATIONS OF IRRIGATION APPLICATION 10.2.1. Variations from Hydraulic Design 10.2.2. Manufacturer’s Variation 10.2.3. Effects by Grouping of Emitters 10.2.4. Possible Clogging Effects 10.2.5. Total Variation 10.3. UNIFORMITY CONSIDERATIONS 10.3.1. Uniformity Parameters 10.3.2. A Linearized Water Application Function 10.3.3. Uniformity and Total Yield 10.3.4. Uniformity and Total Economic Return 10.4. FIELD PERFORMANCE AND IRRIGATION STRATEGY 10.4.1. Significance of Irrigation Scheduling 10.4.2. Optimal Irrigation 10.4.3. Conventional Irrigation 10.4.4. A Simple Irrigation Schedule 10.4.5. Irrigation Strategy for Environmental Protection 10.4.6. Microirrigation for Water Conservation Comparing optimal schedule with conventional irrigation schedule Comparing simple irrigation schedule with conventional irrigation schedule Comparing simple irrigation schedule with the optimal irrigation schedule Comparing the irrigation schedule for environmental protection with the optimal irrigation schedule Comparing the irrigation schedule for environmental protection with the simple irrigation schedule 10.5. FIELD EVALUATION AND ADJUSTMENT 10.5.1. Design Criteria of Microirrigation Uniformity parameters Determination of design criteria Selection of design criteria 10.5.2. Field Evaluation Significance of field evaluation Uniformity measurement 10.5.3. Repairs and Adjustment Repairing leaks in the system Adjustment of irrigation time Adjustments for changes in uniformity LIST OF TERMS AND SYMBOLS REFERENCES CHAPTER 11. MAINTENANCE 11.1. EMITTER OPERATION 11.1.1. Evaluation of Emitter Clogging Source of water Surface water Groundwater Wastewater 11.1.2. Water Quality Physical aspects Chemical aspects Biological aspects 11.1.3. Causes Physical, chemical, and biological factors Microorganisms Macroorganisms 11.2. WATER TREATMENT 11.2.1. Filtration Screen filters Disk filters Media filters Settling basins Cyclonic filters or centrifugal separators Filter design and operation 11.2.2. Chemical Treatment Chemical precipitation Acid treatment Chlorination Chemical injection 11.3. MAINTENANCE OPERATION 11.3.1. Approach Chemical water treatment research Preventive maintenance practices Flushing Reclamation 11.4. GUIDELINE AND PRACTICES REFERENCES SUPPLEMENTAL READING III. SYSTEM TYPE AND MANAGEMENT PRINCIPLES CHAPTER 12. SURFACE DRIP IRRIGATION 12.1. INTRODUCTION 12.2. SURFACE DRIP IRRIGATION OF PERMANENT CROPS 12.2.1. Introduction 12.2.2. Advantages and Disadvantages of Surface Drip Irrigation for Permanent Crops 12.2.3. Suitability Suitable tree and vine crops Geographical considerations Water supply and quality Maintenance and longevity Irrigation uniformity 12.2.4. Surface Drip Design and Application Drip emitters Physical description of drip emitters Emitter hydraulic characteristics Coefficient of manufacturing variation Lateral line drip tubing Lateral line spacing Lateral length Emitter spacing Design emission uniformity Installation issues 12.2.5. Management, Evaluation, and Maintenance of Surface Drip Irrigation Systems Water requirements Crop response Drip irrigation system application rate Irrigation efficiency Irrigation frequency Special management issues 12.2.6. Evaluation of Surface Drip Irrigation Systems 12.3 SURFACE DRIP IRRIGATION FOR ROW CROPS 12.3.1. Advantages and Disadvantages of Surface Drip irrigation for Row Crops 12.3.2. Suitability 12.3.3. Drip Materials 12.3.4. Driplines 12.3.5. Manifolds 12.3.6. Emitter and Dripline Spacing 12.3.7. Installation and Extraction of Surface Driplines 12.3.8. Patterns of Soil Water Content 12.3.9. Patterns of Soil Salinity 12.3.10. Crop Response to Surface Drip Irrigation Surface versus subsurface drip irrigation Irrigation frequency effects 12.3.11. Managing a Drip Irrigation System of Row Crops 12.3.12. Using Plastic Mulch with Surface Drip Irrigation LIST OF TERMS AND SYMBOLS REFERENCES CHAPTER 13. SUBSURFACE DRIP IRRIGATION 13.1. APPLICATION AND GENERAL SUITABILITY 13.1.1. Advantages of SDI 13.1.2. Disadvantages of SDI 13.1.3. Suitability Considerations Suitable crops Geographical and topographical considerations Water supply and quality Maintenance and longevity System uniformity considerations System uniformity considerations related to emitter clogging System uniformity considerations related to root intrusion and root pinching System uniformity considerations related to mechanical or pest damage System uniformity considerations related to soil overburden and/or compaction System uniformity considerations related to soil hydraulic parameters System uniformity and longevity 13.2. SYSTEM DESIGN AND INSTALLATION 13.2.1. Materials and Components Emitter and dripline characteristics Additional SDI system components 13.2.2. Dripline and Manifold Design Issues Dripline, crop row, and emitter spacing Emitter flowrate Dripline length Flushing requirements and flushline design Flushing velocity Dripline inlet pressure and flowrate during flushing Sizing the flushline and flush valve Dripline depth 13.2.3. Installation Issues 13.2.4. Special or Unique Design Considerations SDI design and electrical technologies SDI design issues for recycled waters and biological effluent Use of SDI in fully enclosed subirrigation (FES) systems 13.3. SOIL AND CROP MANAGEMENT 13.3.1. Soil Issues Soil physical characteristics and soil water redistribution Salinity aspects Soil water redistribution problems caused by backpressure Soil compaction Managing the soil water budget components Special or unique soil issues Weed control Application of insecticides for crop protection Application of biological effluent Soil profile injection of gases 13.3.2. Crop Issues Crop water uptake and crop growth Frequency of irrigation Crop response to conjunctive water and nutrient management 13.4. SUMMARY ACKNOWLEDGMENTS LIST OF TERMS AND SYMBOLS REFERENCES CHAPTER 14. BUBBLER IRRIGATION 14.1. APPLICATION AND GENERAL SUITABILITY 14.1.1. Advantages and disadvantages Potential advantages Potential disadvantages 14.2. SYSTEM DESIGN AND APPLICATION 14.2.1. Materials and components Gravity system emitters Pressurized system emitters Laterals and manifolds System design procedures 14.3. SAMPLE DESIGN—LOW HEAD BUBBLER SYSTEM 14.4. MANAGEMENT, EVALUATION, AND MAINTENANCE 14.4.1. Soil Issues 14.4.2. Crops 14.4.3. Evaluation and Maintenance LIST OF TERMS AND SYMBOLS REFERENCES CHAPTER 15. MICROSPRINKLER IRRIGATION 15.1. APPLICATION AND SUITABILITY OF MICROSPRINKLERS 15.1.1. Advantages of Microsprinkler Systems 15.1.2. Disadvantages of Microsprinkler Systems 15.2. MATERIALS AND COMPONENTS 15.2.1. Materials Used in Systems Ferrous materials Non-ferrous metals Plastics Elastomers 15.2.2. Microsprinkler Emitters Emitter hydraulic characteristics 15.2.3. Emitter Manufacturing Variation 15.2.4. Emitter Types Orifice control emitters Vortex control emitters Pressure compensating emitters 15.2.5. Emitter Wetting Patterns 15.2.6. Stake Assemblies 15.2.7. Lateral Tubing 15.3. LATERAL AND MANIFOLD DESIGN 15.3.1. Head Losses in Lateral Lines 15.3.2. Pressure Variation 15.3.3. Lateral Design 15.4. UNIQUE MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS 15.4.1. Young Trees 15.4.2. Application Volumes 15.4.4. Freeze Protection 15.5. EVALUATION OF MICROSPRINKLER SYSTEMS 15.5.1. Uniformity 15.5.2. Irrigation System Efficiency 15.5.3. Wetting Pattern 15.5.4. Effects of Wear LIST OF TERMS AND SYMBOLS


Microirrigation has become the fastest growing segment of the irrigation industry worldwide and has the potential to increase the quality of food supply through improved water fertilizer efficiency. This book is meant to update the text "Trickle Irrigation, Design, Operation and Management". This text offers the most current understanding of the management criteria needed to obtain maximum water and fertilization efficiency.

Key Features

  • Presents a detailed explanation of system design, operation, and management specific to various types of MI systems
  • Analyzes proper use of irrigation technology and its effect to increase efficiency
  • Provides an understanding to the basic science needed to comprehend operation and management
  • Over 150 figures of designs and charts of systems including, surface drip, subsurface drip, spray/microsprinkler, and more


Researchers in crop science, agronomy, irrigation studies, food science, and environmentalists.


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© Elsevier Science 2007
Elsevier Science
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About the Series Volume Editors

Freddie R. Lamm Series Volume Editor

Affiliations and Expertise

Kansas State University, Northwest Research-Extension Center, Colby, Kansas, U.S.A.

James E. Ayars Series Volume Editor

Affiliations and Expertise

Agricultural Research Service, U.S. San Joaquin Valley Agricultural Sciences Center, Parlier, California, U.S.A.

Francis S. Nakayama Series Volume Editor

Affiliations and Expertise

Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Arid-Land Agricultural Research Center, Maricopa, Arizona, U.S.A.