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This paper describes a new application system that uses specific lengths of microtubes to deliver low volumes of insecticide into open seed furrows at the time of planting. The system was developed as an alternative for specific product/crop pest combinations and offers greater accuracy and safety than conventional methods such as seed treatment, band spraying, or granular application.
The microtube applicator uses small-bore plastic tubing with a 0.75 to 2.00-mm (0.03 to 0.08-in.) internal diameter to meter the chemical solution directly into the soil. Specific lengths of microtube of specific bore sizes are selected to permit the use of low volumes of water, as low as 10 L/ha on wheat.
The tubes are attached to the seed coulters of the planter, and the chemical solution is pumped using a 12-V pump with a pressure regulator system or a ground-driven metering pump. Depending on the chemical concentration and the rate required, tests have confirmed that the product may be applied undiluted or mixed with water, using a mixing valve, prior to its discharge through the microtubes.
Effective tests have been conducted in Australia and the United States, and current developments include closed-system handling of the chemical.
microtube systems, in-furrow sprayer, metered chemical solutions, low volumes pesticide application, pesticides
Application manager, Ciba-Geigy Ltd., Basle,