Aug 28, 2017Valley Irrigation introduces X-Tec Center Drive
Valley Irrigation introduces a new center drive. The X-Tec advanced DC drive motor uses FastPass technology and operates up to twice the speed of a standard, high-speed AC center drive motor, according to the company. The motor design provides constant torque at any speed, designed to provide growers with unmatched control and additional options to maximize crop yields.
The patented alignment technology and robust DC motor keep the pivot moving at a smooth, consistent pace, even over varied terrain. The drive technology allows the Valley X-Tec to move at speeds as low as 1 RPM – 1 percent of maximum motor speed – or ramp up to a fast 136 RPM.
“While the power of the Valley X-Tec drive is attractive for running the pivot at lower speeds in difficult terrain, it’s really the high-speed capabilities that appeal to many growers,” said Valley product manager Christopher Righter. “It’s ideal for crops that need to be cooled every day, or to maintain proper surface moisture during germination.”
For example, crops such as carrots and potatoes are more susceptible to heat and sun. They require a daily cooling spray to remain healthy. Running a pivot over the crop at top speed provides the proper cooling for plant health.
During germination, the Valley X-Tec speed allows the grower to provide frequent, light applications, which allow the plant to push through the soil more easily. Then, during early stage crop growth, maintaining soil moisture can prevent sand from blowing and damaging leaves while minimizing erosion.
With FastPass technology growers have additional options for applying fertilizer through the pivot. Moving the pivot at a high speed also provides the option to fertilize through the leaves.
“The timing of foliar application can be tricky, and fertilizing through the pivot gives the grower more control,” Righter said. “If the weather changes, the grower doesn’t have to wait for an aerial applicator or get a sprayer ready to apply the fertilizer or protective crop chemicals. He can just set the pivot to fertigate as the timing is right.”
Varying irrigation under one pivot allows for simpler split-crop management. Irrigators can also program their center pivot to run at faster speeds over low spots, preventing overwatering in areas that need little or no water, while slowing down over areas that require more water, according to Valley.