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A Microcomputer-Based Irrigation Scheduler for the Humid Mid-South Region

Cahoon, J., Ferguson, J., Edwards, D., Tacker, P.
Applied engineering in agriculture 1990 v.6 no.3 pp. 289-295
agricultural engineering, algorithms, atmospheric precipitation, corn, cotton, furrows, grain sorghum, irrigation scheduling, irrigation systems, quantitative analysis, soil water, soybeans, temperature, Arkansas
This article presents the development and field validation of the University of Arkansas Irrigation Scheduler, a microcomputer based program designed to assist in scheduling irrigations in the humid Mid-South. The program has separate subroutines for stationary and towable center pivot systems, and surface (furrow and flood) irrigation systems. The program is designed to schedule irrigations for a system, thus, the water source is the focal point not each individual field served by the water source. Algorithms are incorporated into the center pivot programs to optimize scheduling based on soil moisture considerations as well as tactical goals concerning pivot placement. The program supports irrigation scheduling for soybeans, cotton, corn, and grain sorghum. The user input necessary is daily maximum temperature, daily precipitation and irrigation dates and, for pivot systems, irrigation application depths. The results of several years of field use, in both qualitative and quantitative analyses, indicate that the program is a valuable irrigation scheduling tool for use in the humid Mid-South.