“Listen to your customers and design and develop exactly what they need.” This is an enduring piece of wisdom imparted on us by our father and guides our doing to this day. Over five years of developing the Komet Twin Ultra line, we carried out a worldwide test with 500 sprinklers. Today they are put through their paces. Experience shows that sophisticated design and high-quality components significantly increase our big volume guns’ efficiency, resilience and durability.
Komet Big Sprinkler Products
High-Volume Big Sprinkler Irrigation Guns - Applications and Advantages
While center pivot irrigation systems are considered a very popular sprinkler irrigation system on the market, there are circumstances in which they are not practicable. Depending on the challenges of a specific crop or field, there are scenarios in which a set-up consisting entirely of big sprinkler guns – either in the form of a portable or permanent arrangement – are ultimately the better option. For example, crops that have a higher watering requirement may benefit from high-volume irrigation – which is defined by a flow rate exceeding 1200 gallons per hour (gph) or 20 gallons per minute (gpm). Because of their combination of long throw diameters, high water application rates, and minimal labor requirements, high-volume irrigation guns are often chosen for open fields or crops grown on large acreages – such as cane sugar, alfalfa, potatoes, corn or pasture grasses. With the appropriate risers, irrigation cannons can even be used to irrigate tall-growing crops such as vineyards or orchard trees. Big gun sprinklers are also a popular choice for sports-turf irrigation and dust control, as well as industrial wastewater and mining applications.
In the agricultural and livestock sector, growers also utilize irrigation cannons for scenarios that require maximum flexibility. For example, high-volume irrigation guns are an excellent solution for fields with irregularly shaped boundaries, or land containing physical obstructions (such as trees, roads or streams), as the water can be directed exactly where it is needed. In essence, high-volume irrigation guns are suitable for fields of almost any shape or layout. A portable big sprinkler set-up is also ideal for fields that serve as grazing pastures for some of the time, as the irrigation system can be repositioned or removed by a single person when animals are on site. Equally, portable big sprinkler arrangements can be removed for cultivation or crop rotation purposes, saving farmers from having to work around the sprinkler risers. Furthermore, growers who lease their land may not wish to put up a permanent irrigation structure on plots of land they do not own. Another advantage of a large-volume sprinkler system (be it permanent or portable) is the comparatively low initial investment per unit of irrigated area.
Due to their long throw diameter, high-volume irrigation guns – also referred to as long distance sprinklers – are able to reach areas that would otherwise be difficult to cover. Another advantage of big-volume guns is the large area coverage that can be achieved at any one setting. Depending on the product, the trajectory of a big sprinkler is changed either manually, or with a timer – such as the patented Komet Twin Inverter, which automatically changes the sprinkler’s sector angles, saving growers a significant amount of effort and time.
Komet’s product range of high-volume irrigation cannons – the Komet Twin 101 Ultra line – can be installed on travelers (whereby the big sprinkler gun is mounted to a wheeled sprinkler cart), as well as solid sets (whereby the irrigation guns are installed on posts in a grid pattern). In addition, Komet’s Twin 101 Ultra big gun sprinklers can also be used as end guns on center pivot systems. Installing big sprinklers at the outermost spans of a mechanized irrigation system is a simple but effective way to significantly increase the wetted area and, consequently, increase the volume of the final yield.
Long Distance Sprinklers: Successful Area Coverage
There are many reasons why growers opt for long distance sprinkler irrigation. However, to avoid pitfalls and achieve optimal results, irrigation systems involving big sprinklers must be appropriately managed. For example, the high-volume output of big gun sprinklers inevitably results in an increased risk of runoff and erosion. For this reason, high-volume irrigation cannons are best limited to use on relatively flat ground. Due to the high output volume, there is also a greater potential for sealing and compaction of tighter soil.
However, an optimized design can go a long way towards minimizing these issues. Komet offers a wealth of information on all aspects of designing the perfect irrigation system, along with effective innovations and accessories to ensure a tailor-made big sprinkler set-up with successful results. These include, for example, the Komet Dynamic Jet-Breaker: a patented device designed to redistribute a portion of the excess water from the end of the throw towards the gun. Installing the Jet-Breaker on any Komet Twin Ultra big sprinkler model also alters the irrigation cannon’s water distribution profile to fit the requirements of solid-set systems.
To ensure the greatest possible efficiency and uniformity of application, the choice of nozzle is of great importance. This includes the nozzle diameter, which should be a correct match for the irrigation system’s flow rate and pressure range. Komet supplements its big sprinkler line with full taper bore nozzles, which are available with the diameters of 10.0 to 45.00 mm / 0.39 to 1.77”, for flow rates spanning from 5.4 to – 235.0 m3/h / 22 to 1032 gpm and pressure ranges from 1 to 9 bar / 6 to 130 psi. Within the irrigation market, taper bore nozzles are considered an industry standard, as they deliver an excellent performance in most areas of application. Komet’s range of full taper bore nozzles has been meticulously engineered to achieve an extra-long, conical design: this allows the water to exit as a perfectly cylindrical stream without turbulence and consequently hit the deflector full force for a perfect water distribution.
One of the main constraints of big sprinkler irrigation is the susceptibility to wind drift, which can interfere with distribution uniformity and the efficiency of water application. In wind speeds of over 10 mph, using lower trajectory angles will ensure a more uniform coverage. The Komet Vari Angle – an accessory compatible with all models of the Komet Twin Ultra range – enables growers to adjust the sprinkler’s trajectory angle anywhere between 15 and 45 degrees without any flow restrictions. As a result, the angle of a Komet Twin Ultra large-volume irrigation gun can always be fine-tuned to match the given environmental conditions and application requirements. At lower winds, higher trajectories can be used: this increases the distance of throw, and allows the droplets of the stream to reach a horizontal velocity of almost zero before descending to the ground.