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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Polyacrylamide Decreases Furrow Erosion

Authors
item Trout, Thomas
item Lentz, Rodrick - UNIVERSITY OF IDAHO

Submitted to: American Society of Civil Engineers
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: July 21, 1993
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Erosion from furrow irrigated land is a serious problem in southern Idaho and several other areas. Polyacrylamide, a very long chain polymer, increases aggregate stability and flocculates suspended sediments. It thus can potentially reduce furrow sediment detachment and transport Recirculating infiltrometer studies showed that 0.5 kg/ha/irrigation of polyacrylamide applied with the irrigation water can dramatically reduce furrow erosion.

Technical Abstract: Small concentrations of polyacrylamide in irrigation water can dramatically reduce furrow erosion and sediment loss. PAM stabilizes and reduces the erodibility of soil surface particles, and flocculates small particles which make them more difficult to transport. Tested PAM concentrations amounted to 0.25 to 0.67 kg/ha applications, which would cost less than $1.70 per ha per irrigation. The PAM application can be concentrated early during the irrigation or applied uniformly during the irrigation. This practical and economic process shows a great promise to reduce furrow-induced soil erosion.

Last Modified: 12/21/2014