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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Ames, Iowa » National Laboratory for Agriculture and The Environment » Agroecosystems Management Research » Research » Research Project #435450

Research Project: Evaluation of Droplet Movement from Application Equipment Using Lidar and Micrometeorological Techniques

Location: Agroecosystems Management Research

Project Number: 5030-12210-003-01-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2018
End Date: Aug 31, 2019

Objective:
Evaluate the effect of ground-based application equipment on the dispersion of droplets using lidar and micrometeorological measurements. Evaluate the effect of modified application equipment on droplet dispersion. Evaluate the effect of dispersion patterns on efficiency of applied materials.

Approach:
A combination of lidar and micrometeorological techniques will be used to evaluate the movement of droplets applied from ground-based application equipment. Micrometeorological equipment will be used to quantify the turbulence structure of air above a canopy as the application equipment moves through the field and when coupled with the lidar equipment to quantify the movement of droplets will quantify the efficacy of any material reaching the target. Preliminary research has shown that the application equipment creates a wake due to the interaction of the equipment with the air above the canopy and causes the upward movement of particles above the canopy. A series of studies will be conducted over a soil-canopy surface to determine the structure of the air and the vertical movement of droplets when applied with ground-based system. Water will be used as the droplet source and combinations of application pressure, ground speed, equipment modification, and time of day will be evaluated to quantify the effect of these variables. The data will be analyzed to quantify the effect these variables on the turbulence generated by the application equipment and the dispersion pattern of the droplets across the field.