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ARS Home » Plains Area » Bushland, Texas » Conservation and Production Research Laboratory » Soil and Water Management Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #171290


item Peters, Robert
item Evett, Steven - Steve

Submitted to: Irrigation Association Conference Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/29/2004
Publication Date: 11/14/2004
Citation: Peters, R.T., Evett, S.R. 2004. Comparison of scaled canopy temperatures with measured results under center pivot irrigation. In: Irrigation Association Conference Proceedings. 25th Annual International Irrigation Show, November 14-16, 2004, Tampa, Florida. p. 1-11.

Interpretive Summary: Crop leaf temperature can be used to determine water or disease stress. A method for automating center pivot irrigation using crop leaf temperatures is being developed. This requires a method to predict leaf temperature over the entire day from a one-time-of-day temperature measurement. Two different methods for doing this were tested using data collected under a center pivot irrigation system. It was found that these methods could predict leaf temperatures throughout the day from just a one-time-of-day measurement with an average error of 1 degree Celsius. This not only enables automated center pivot irrigation scheduling, but it also simplifies several new technologies in irrigation management. These include collecting input data for the Crop Water Stress Index, and the creation of field level leaf temperature maps.

Technical Abstract: The remote sensing of crop canopy temperatures using infrared thermometers is being used in conjunction with several new developments in the area of irrigation scheduling and control. These include the time-temperature-threshold (TTT) method of irrigation scheduling, the crop water stress index (CWSI) and the creation of field level canopy temperature maps using infrared temperature sensors mounted on self-propelled irrigation systems. A method of estimating the canopy temperature dynamics throughout the day using only a one-time-of-day canopy temperature measurement is useful in the application of many of these technologies to self-propelled irrigation systems such as center pivots or linear moves. Two different algorithms for doing this were tested using data collected under center pivot irrigation. These algorithms use the canopy temperature dynamics captured at a stationary location to create a reference curve. Sixteen different infrared thermometers were positioned in stationary locations throughout a field with four different irrigation level treatments; 100%, 66%, and 33% of the irrigation requirements, and a non-irrigated, or dryland treatment. One-time-of-day canopy temperature measurements were taken from each of these treatments at various times of day and were scaled using the reference curve to estimate diurnal canopy temperature curves. These curves were then compared with the actual measurements and the errors were analyzed. Mean errors using one-time-of-day measurements early in the day (before 0800 h) and late in the evening (after 2200 h) were unacceptably high. However, the absolute mean errors using measurements taken between 1000 h and 1900 h were approximately 1 deg C with a standard deviation of about 1 deg C. The stress level of the reference curve crop did not make a significant difference in the absolute mean errors.