Sprinkler irrigation is a water-saving irrigation technique in which irrigation water is pressurized (using a pump or a natural drop in water source), piped to a nozzle, and water is ejected from a nozzle to evenly disperse fine water droplets to irrigate the crop. Compared with ordinary ground irrigation methods, it has the following advantages:
- Water saving is 30-50% compared with ground irrigation.
- The diameter of the water droplets and the intensity of the sprinkler irrigation can be adjusted according to the soil texture, and no erosion will be caused to avoid the loss of water, soil and fertilizer.
- The use of sprinkler irrigation can save land occupation of lands with a total area of 7%-13% and improve land utilization.
- The application of labor saving sprinkler irrigation improves the mechanization degree and automation degree of irrigation, greatly reduces labor intensity and saves labor.
- Adaptable strong sprinkler irrigation is not restricted by terrain slope and soil water permeability, and it is suitable for irrigation in places with complex terrain in hilly areas that are difficult to achieve by ground irrigation methods.
- Increasing production sprinkler irrigation facilitates strict control of soil moisture and maintains soil fertility. At the same time, it can adjust the field microclimate, reduce the foliar temperature in the hot season, and wash away the dust on the stems and leaves, which is beneficial to the plant’s breathing and photosynthesis, and achieve the effect of increasing production. Sprinkler irrigation on field crops can increase yield by about 20%, economic crops can increase yield by more than 30%, vegetables can increase yield by 1-2 times, and product quality can be improved at the same time.
Sprinkler irrigation has a wide range of applications and is suitable for irrigation of all dry crops such as grains, vegetables, fruit trees, herbs and the like. From the topography, it is suitable for both plains and hills; from the perspective of soil, it is suitable for both soils with high water permeability and for soils with low infiltration rates. Sprinkler irrigation can be used not only for crop irrigation, but also for garden grassland and flower irrigation. It can also be used as a spray fertilizer, pesticide, defrost, heatstroke prevention and dustproof.
There are many types of sprinkler irrigation systems, which are roughly classified into the following categories according to the equipment composition:
- Fixed sprinkler irrigation system It consists of water source, water pump unit, pipeline system and nozzle. Except for the sprinklers, the other components of the system are fixed throughout the irrigation season or even year-round (the main pipes and branch pipes are buried underground). The fixed sprinkler irrigation system is easy to use, has high operating efficiency, low operating cost, and has less engineering footprint, which is convenient for automation, but with high investment.
- The semi-fixed sprinkler system has the same composition as the fixed type. The power, water pump and main pipe are fixed, and the branch pipe, rigid pipe and nozzle can be moved. The advantage is that the equipment has a high interest rate rate and relatively low investment, but the labor intensity is high.
- The unit type sprinkler irrigation system consists of various large, medium and small sprinkler irrigation units. It has the advantages of flexibility, adaptability and low investment. Common sprinkler irrigation units include light hand-lifting (stretcher type) sprinkler units, light trolley type sprinkler units, roll-type sprinkler units and reel-type sprinkler units, and translational sprinkler units.