Submitted to: Soil Fertility Conference Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/7/2000
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Both GPFARM and the NLEAP Java Internet packages provide tools to assist with nutrient management across farms and fields. GPFARM allows nutrient management studies in conjunction with economic analysis and other aspects of a whole farming system such as livestock operations, weed management, and soil erosion. NLEAP JAVA Tools provides a rapid access package focused on management of nutrients to control nitrate leaching under agricultural crops. An attempt was made to make the input data files compatible between the two systems so that studies begun with one tool could be transferred to the other for further analysis. Studies needing a whole-farm analysis from various aspects should use GPFARM, while studies focusing on problems with nutrient management associated with nitrate leaching should begin with NLEAP JAVA Tools.
Technical Abstract: Management of nutrients in agriculture has become increasing complex and challenging with the introduction of technologies such as precision agriculture and continuing concern about farm profits and environmental issues such as water quality and greenhouse gas emissions. Computer- based tools are now available that can provide valuable assistance to managers wanting to estimate the impacts of nutrient management alternatives on crop yields, and on nitrate leaching and nitrous oxide emissions. The real benefit of these tools lies in their ability to quickly make long-term projections of the effects of management scenarios and then allow these options to be compared and referenced to a baseline. These models generally operate on laptop computers as stand-alone applications or as clients operating over the Internet from a variety of servers that provide access to databases, simulation models, and visual and spatial tools such as GIS.