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TAS Country : January 13th 2012
14 Tasmanian Country Friday, January 13, 2012 ALL IN ONE: Tas Land Drainage's installation machine which installs drainage pipe and injects gravel around the pipe at the same time, all at walking speed. Good drainage will boost production OVER the past 10 years there has been a huge push to increase productivity in Tasmania by the better use of fertiliser and water. There has been a huge increase in irrigation usage around the state and with the introduction of center pivot and linear irrigators there has also been a huge increase in areas that are not as pro- ductive as they could be due to overwatering. These areas are mostly abandoned for that year's crop rotation, however the input costs are still the same for these non pro- ductive areas as the better areas. An investment in under- ground drainage in those wet areas can reverse the problem and increase pro- ductivity. The installation of underground drainage pi- pes will lower the water table and increase traffic ability of vehicles and stock. Plants will have a deeper root zone, which in turn increases production as they will be able extract nutrients at a deeper level in the soil profile. Grass production will continue longer in the spring with deeper rooting and hang on longer in autumn for the same reason. Good drainage can pro- vide another month's growth to pasture over a 12-month cycle. Given the extra water being applied to soils that are traditionally non crop- ping soils (they may not necessarily be free drain- ing and have high salt levels) there is a potential for saline areas to grow rapidly. By using underground drainage these saline areas can be held and minimized and, in some cases if they are not too severe, they can even be eradicated. ''Tas Land Drainage has over 30 years draining the sub soils of farms and whilst it cannot guarantee 100 per cent success on every job we have a vast experience in most Tas- manian soils and most cli- ents get their money back in the initial 12 months after installation,'' com- pany owner Tim Terry says. ''Drainage is 100 per cent tax deductible in the year of installation so it is a very real investment re- turn comparison to that of irrigation,'' Mr Terry said. ''How long will an under- ground system last? There are old clay pipe systems that had been in- stalled in Roman times that are still working today, so the answer is a very long time! ''Whilst we have not been around as long as the Romans the drains on our own property have been working well for the past 30-odd years, so it is well proven in Tasmanian soils. ''We highly recommend that subsoil drainage be installed when the soil it at its hardest. ''This is in autumn and there is always a bit of a rush to get installation done after crops are taken and before it gets too wet. ''Tas Land Drainage will do a free site inspections statewide for any problem areas, please phone 0418 130 464.'' Water efficiency by remote control EFFICIENT DUTY: Twin 55kw drive system, designed to work in conjunction with two pivot irrigators on a common main line. PRESSURE MANAGEMENT: Radio controllers send information from the irrigator to the pump system. TASMANIAN farmers are some of the most proactive when it comes to looking at new irrigation practices, according to Irrisys, a com- pany developing more ef- ficient ways of using water. Company head Damien Butler says the introduc- tion of VRI (variable rate irrigation) and IRPCS (re- mote pressure control) with single dropper control and 1 psi resolution has changed the watering game. ''This level of control provides the perfect step- ping stone for the next generation of control and monitoring,'' Mr Butler says. ''The development of our remote pressure control system has changed the way people use their irri- gation pumping systems. It has also provided irri- gation designers with scope to try new and excit- ing methods to control and manage water. ''The system is designed to work in conjunction with a VSD [variable speed drive] and provides set duty control regardless of static variation. ''For example, if a pivot system is working on a circle with 30m static dif- ferential from the cart to the highest point on the property, the irrigation de- signer would have de- signed the system at this highest point. ''As a result the system works perfectly well but it is highly inefficient when it comes to managing the power required to run the system. ''Lets say the end span of the pivot requires 25psi to work effectively at the highest point. ''However when the irri- gator moves around the circle and reduces in elev- ation by the estimated 30 meters an additional 42psi [theory base assumption] will be delivered --- mak- ing the total end span pressure in excess of 67psi. This is hugely inefficient. The Irrisys solution is to look at the pressure on the end span and send that information back to the motor via low fre- quency VHF ra- dio. The motor control system is configured to re- act, based on the feedback from the sensor on the end span against the required pro- grammed pres- sure. ''As the irri- gator moves down and around reducing static height, the pump simply ramps back to compen- sate and as a re- sult maintains the minimum op- erating pressure required. ''This shouldn't be con- fused with local pressure control at the pump as it does not provide the same benefits or level of control as IRPCS. ''To understand the fine points of how this works you need to have a high level understanding of the electrical engineering be- hind the product, but luck- ily we have done this for you. The system works by reducing the current draw [amps] on the motor and as a result it decreases the kilowatts used. ''The irrigation tarriff works on kilowatt hours and therefore a reduction in kilowatts produced per hour results in a lower pumping cost. ''Irrisys is now testing its new remote web-based monitoring system which will bring all your farm assets into one system. ''This is being achieved by linking our Fieldlink radio systems into a net- work with an access point to the web --- all developed by Irrisys. ''The user will have a display showing all critical information about their property. As a result you will be able to have a finer level of control with VRI, IRPCS and VFD tech- nology.'' Further details contact Damien Butler 0419 384 624 , damien@irr- isys.com.au or www.irrisy- s.com.au Special Feature Irrigation, pumps and water storage Irrisys... complete control solutions No matter what your irrigation needs Irrisys allows you to automate and control all aspects or irrigation pumping and monitoring offering you unequalled irrigation support. simple efficient smart Irrigation Automation Process Control Pump Protection Water Management Customised Systems *Smart Approved WaterMark for Pump Guard only Contact: Damien Butler 0419 384 624 www.irrisys.com.au firstname.lastname@example.org Drainage doesn't cost "It Pays" Lifetime of crop insurance 100% Tas Deductible Phone Tas Land Drainage on 0418 130 464 for a Free on site consultation and beat the autumn rush 2002018-120106
January 5th 2012
January 26th 2012