The patents have been issued, the company’s name is different and the significantly advanced ag sprayer technology we discussed here in the April/May 2021 issue is headed to market.
With a working prototype demonstrating its capabilities at field days and the Midwest Ag Industries Exposition, Latitude-AG’s SRV2 Boom Section chemical Injection and Recirculation System promises to save growers and applicators time and expensive chemicals.
“We have taken chemical injection to a new level by completely redesigning the recirculation and chemical injection layout to take advantage of some of the newer technologies that offer improved practices,” says company president Kurt Kamin.
“First, we confined the recirculation to the section level only, thus simplifying the cleanout process and limiting waste. This process is made extremely simple with the addition our new sectional chemical injection system.
“By monitoring the carrier flow at the section level along with the chemical flow at the injection site, we can precisely supply product to the sprayer nozzles.”
The system will be offered as a retrofit on any brand sprayer and is ISOBUS compatible (you can use your monitor, or Latitude-AG will provide one) with or without pulse width modulation (PWM) nozzles. The system enables a much more efficient chemical injection calibration than possible on systems in which product is injected near the main sprayer pump.
“The SRV2 system is an industry-first for on-the-go individual section chemical injection programmability, Kamin explains.
The newly patented, no-moving-part recirculation system cuts sprayer cleanout time from hours to minutes, and because the system injects ag products at the section level only, and doesn’t recirculate the mixture back to the sprayer tank, applicators can be better stewards of their inputs through water management and more precise chemical application.
The standard sprayer system is clean after a one-hour process of flushing three 150-gallon tanks of water, the SRV2 System is completely clean by turning off the injection and flushing with water in just 3 minutes and 15 seconds, creating significantly less exposure and down time.
Other systems return product to the center section or directly back to the main tank and can involve 30-40 gallons of chemical to be flushed at cleanout, Kamin says, noting environmental and economic costs of wasting crop protectants and nutrients.
“We have taken chemical injection to a new level by completely redesigning the recirculation and chemical injection layout…”
“We don’t return product to the main tank, so far less product is being handled,” he explains. “There is approximately 1 gallon of product per 20 feet of spray boom, so with the SRV2 System you are dealing with only about 6 gallons of product in a 120-foot boom.”
The SRV2 system features a one-piece eductor jet pump powered by the sprayer’s main carrier pump. Once the carrier solution (water) enters the SRV it is on what Kamin calls a “closed loop racetrack,” recirculating through the sectional plumbing about every 2 seconds with the only way out being the sprayer nozzles.
“What doesn’t get sprayed returns to the SRV which uses energy from a 2-pound pressure drop across the eductor’s venturi to power the recirculation process within the section,” he explains. We use polyethylene lined hose to expedite cleanout.
“After injecting chemicals at the section level, we use ultrasonic flow meters on the carrier and chemical feeds to accurately inject the proper amount of chemical on-the-go,” Kamin explains.
“This accuracy works very well with turn compensation and barrier/buffer areas. There are no dead-end sections and no long delays in getting the chemical from the pump to the nozzle.”
The continual close monitoring of carrier and chemical flow allows the system to easily alert the operator of problems with plugged or malfunctioning nozzles.
We think there will be a significant ROI for the SRV2 because of the time saved in cleanouts and chemical changeovers, potential chemical reductions in buffer management, and the fact that far less rinsate is created, he adds.
Latitude-AG was formed in 2021 as Kamin’s Drift Reduction Technologies (DRT) merged with plastic-part manufacturer Primary Mfg. Inc. of Humboldt, S.D..