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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Management Strategies to Sustain Irrigated Agriculture with Limited Water Supplies

Location: Water Management Research

Title: Hydraulics of sprinkler and microirrigation systems

Authors
item Martin, Derrel -
item Heermann, Dale
item Madison, Mark -

Submitted to: Trade Journal Publication
Publication Type: Popular Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: March 13, 2013
Publication Date: April 20, 2013
Citation: Martin, D.L., Heermann, D.F., Madison, M. 2013. Hydraulics of sprinkler and microirrigation systems. Trade Journal Publication. PP16-20.

Technical Abstract: The fluid dynamics of sprinkler and microirrigation systems are complex. Water moves dynamically from the water source through the pump into the pipe network. Water often goes through a series of screens and filters depending on the source and type of irrigation system. From the pipe network, water is supplied under pressure to sprinkler systems and through a sprinkler nozzle into the air at a high velocity where it breaks up into droplets and falls to the soil or crop surface and is redistributed. Sprinklers are mounted at various heights with many types of nozzles that experience diverse pressure and wind speeds. The diversity of operating conditions produces a large range of drop sizes. When the network provides water to a microirrigation system the water is discharged through emitters that are located on the surface or buried in the soil. In this article, we discuss the flow within the closed-pipe network to either the sprinkler or microirrigation emitter with emphasis on the operation and pressure loss of several types of valves used in irrigation systems.

Last Modified: 12/21/2014
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