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Chapter: Civil - Water Resources and Irrigation Engineering - Irrigation Methods

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Advantage and limitations of sprinkler irrigation

Seepage losses, which occur in earthen channels of surface irrigation methods, are completely eliminated. Moreover, only optimum quantity of water is used in this method.

The advantage of sprinkler irrigation are enumerated below:

 

 

(i)                Seepage losses, which occur in earthen channels of surface irrigation methods, are completely eliminated. Moreover, only optimum quantity of water is used in this method.

 

(ii)             Land leveling is not required, and thus avoiding removal top fertile soil, as happens in other surface irrigation methods.

 

(iii)           No cultivation area is lost for making ditches, as happens in surface irrigation methods. It, thus, results in increasing about 16% of the cropped area.

 

(iv)           In sprinkler system, the water is to be applied at a rate lesser than the infiltration capacity of the soil, and thus avoiding surface run, and its bad effects, such as loss of water, washing of top soil, etc.

 

(v)             Fertilizers can be uniformly applied, because they are mixed with irrigation water itself.

(vi)           This method leaches down salts and prevents waterlogging or salinity.

(vii)        It is less labour oriented, nad hence useful where labour is costly and scarce.

 

(viii)      Upto 80% efficiency can be achieved, i.e. upto 80% of applied wter can be storedin the root zone of plants.

 

The limitations of sprinkler irrigation nare also enumerated below:

 

 

(i)                High winds may distort sprinkler pattern, causing nonuniform spreading of water on the crops.

 

(ii)             In areas of high temperature and high wind velocity, considerable evaporation losses of water may take place.

 

(iii)           They are not suited to crops requiring frequent and larger depths of irrigation, such as paddy.

 

(iv)           Initial cost of the system is very high, and the system requires a high technical skill.

 

(v)             Only sand and silt free water can be used, as otherwise pump impellers lifting such waters will get damaged.

 

(vi)           It requires larger electrical power.

(vii)        Heavy soil with poor intake cannot the irrigated efficiently.

(viii)      A constant water supply is needed for commercial use of equipment.

 

 

Note: the widely known Indian commercial company which specializes in installing sprinkler irrigation Irrigationsystems, isEquipments‚Premie (Pvt Delhi office also. This firm and its publications can be referred to, for specialized knowledge in this branch of field irrigation.


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