Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers to determine if aeration reduces compaction, runoff on no-till fields

03.04.2009
Much of Texas' wheat may be grazed as a part of a dual-use crop. But many fields are still prepared using conventional tillage, which may not efficiently capture rainfall – a key to economic success in a semi-arid environment, said a Texas AgriLife Research scientist.

Dr. Paul DeLaune, environmental soil scientist at the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Vernon, said tillage operations can increase soil compaction, thereby increasing runoff.

Each year, depending on market conditions, up to 75 percent of wheat planted in Texas may be grazed, and of that, 95 percent is under conventional tillage, DeLaune said.

"There is a perception among some producers considering no-till production that using no-till in dual-use wheat production will increase compaction and therefore reduce water infiltration and decrease yields," he said. "Studies are needed to determine whether or not this perception is valid."

One management practice to potentially reduce compaction and/or increase water infiltration is the use of an aerator in no-till dual-use systems, DeLaune said.

The tines of the aerator can be varied from 0 to 10 degrees offset, with soil disturbance increased by increasing the offset, he said. The aerator will disturb the soil down to the depth of 8 inches, yet leave considerable residue on the soil surface.

At the Smith-Walker research field near Vernon, DeLaune studied the impact of different tillage operations in dual-use wheat on runoff quantity, water quality and nutrient loss.

Tillage treatments were applied in early September and included: conventional-till, no-till and no-till with aerator offsets at 0, 2.5, 5, 7.5 and 10 degrees. Although two production systems were to be compared (graze-out and graze plus grain), no livestock grazing took place due to drought and poor forage production. However, there was extensive grazing from whitetail deer, he said.

In mid-December, 1.5- by 2-meter plots were established in the two production systems. Rainfall simulators were used to apply a runoff-producing event to the crop, he said.

A simulated rainfall of about 2.75 inches per hour was showered over the crop and allowed to continue until one-half hour after runoff had started. The runoff water was collected, measured and analyzed for quantity and quality.

In his study, DeLaune timed the minutes it took to achieve runoff. He said the runoff came quickest, in the highest quantity and with the most soil erosion from the conventional-tilled plots.

The total amounts of ammonium and phosphorous in the runoff water were higher also from the conventional-tilled plots.

There was no statistical difference in runoff volume, soil erosion and nutrient runoff amounts between the no-till plots and the aerated treatments, he said.

These initial results show that the use of an AerWay aerator may not be economical, based solely on soil and water conservation. Grazing effects and grain yields may indicate otherwise as the study continues, DeLaune said. Grazing effects and grain yields were not taken due to the extreme and persistent drought in 2008-2009.

Runoff quantity, water quality and yield data will continue to be collected over the next two years.

Dr. Paul DeLaune | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.tamu.edu

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Ammonium nitrogen input increases the synthesis of anticarcinogenic compounds in broccoli
26.04.2017 | University of the Basque Country

nachricht New data unearths pesticide peril in beehives
21.04.2017 | Cornell University

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: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Fighting drug resistant tuberculosis – InfectoGnostics meets MYCO-NET² partners in Peru

28.04.2017 | Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Wireless power can drive tiny electronic devices in the GI tract

28.04.2017 | Medical Engineering

Ice cave in Transylvania yields window into region's past

28.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

Nose2Brain – Better Therapy for Multiple Sclerosis

28.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>