Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Crop producers go high-tech with GPS technology

23.01.2003


Global Positioning Systems prepare a digital map for precise soil acidity identification

A study conducted by Iowa State University soil scientists suggests Global Positioning Systems (GPS) available to corn and soybean producers can markedly improve the management of soil acidity and lime application. The research is published in the January/February 2003 issue of Agronomy Journal.

Soil acidity can limit plant growth, and due to soil formation processes and management practices, there exists large pH variability within producers’ fields. Lime often needs to be applied to maintain profitable crop production; however, traditional methods make it impractical to change lime application rates over a field. Producers usually apply a uniform rate although they recognize only a small proportion of the field receives the optimum application.



New technologies can change these situations. Global positioning systems (GPS) and advances in computer software allow for precise identification of soil sample positions in the field and improved soil-test mapping. Variable rate technology (VRT), which combines GPS, computer-based controllers, and digital soil-test maps, provides a practical way for applying desired lime rates over a field.

The study was conducted by Dr. Antonio Mallarino and graduate research assistant Agustin Bianchini in central Iowa during two years in one field and three years in another field, and received support from the Iowa Soybean Association and a local producer. The two fields had very high pH variability.

The study suggests that while a new zone soil sampling approach based on various information layers may not provide better information than the denser grid sampling approach used by many producers, it is less costly and adapts well to different field and economic conditions. Zone sampling uses a variety of information layers (such as yield maps, aerial crop canopy images, digitized soil survey maps, and electrical conductivity maps among others) to define sampling areas within a field.

The lime application portion of the study showed the VRT method resulted in more efficient lime management, reducing the lime need to 60% compared with the traditional uniform-rate application method and reduced soil pH variability.

Although the results showed no cost-effective sampling approach will completely alleviate the limitation of current VRT equipment to manage the small-scale pH variability existing in many fields, a combination of GPS, zone soil sampling, and VRT provides a reasonable and efficient management of soil acidity and lime application.


Agronomy Journal, http://agron.scijournals.org is a peer-reviewed, international journal of agriculture and natural resource sciences published six times a year by the American Society of Agronomy (ASA). Agronomy Journal contains research papers on all aspects of crop and soil science including military land use and management, agroclimatology and agronomic modeling, environmental quality, international agronomy, agricultural research station management, and integrated agricultural systems.

The American Society of Agronomy (ASA), the Crop Science Society of America (CSSA), and the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) are educational organizations helping their 10,000+ members advance the disciplines and practices of agronomy, crop and soil sciences by supporting professional growth and science policy initiatives, and by providing quality, research-based publications and a variety of member services.

Sara Uttech | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.asa-cssa-sssa.org/
http://agron.scijournals.org

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Cascading use is also beneficial for wood
11.12.2017 | Technische Universität München

nachricht The future of crop engineering
08.12.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

Im Focus: Successful Mechanical Testing of Nanowires

With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong

Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A whole-body approach to understanding chemosensory cells

13.12.2017 | Health and Medicine

Water without windows: Capturing water vapor inside an electron microscope

13.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Cellular Self-Digestion Process Triggers Autoimmune Disease

13.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>