Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System

In the sprinkler system, water is applied to the surface of any crop or soil in the form of a thin spray from above. it releases the water just like rain with the help of small nozzles that are placed in the supply line 
A typical sprinkler system consists of a pump to lift and convey water under pressure, pipes or tubing for the conveyance of water, sprinkler heads or nozzles, and risers that connect the sprinkler heads with a pipeline. 

Components of Sprinkler Irrigation Systems;


          Major Components of Sprinkler Irrigation System


Pumping station or Header Assembly


By-pass valve


Fertilizer tank


Filtration system


Pressure gauges


Control valves


HDPE / PVC Pipes


QRC Pump connector


Sprinkler Nozzles


Service Saddle


Types of Sprinkler Irrigation Systems;

1) Based on the types of equipment with which spraying is done, the sprinkler system has been classified as follows ;

a) Rotating head type Sprinkler System:

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System

Smaller size nozzles are fitted on riser pipes fixed at equal distance along the entire length of the horizontal pipelines and the parallel pipelines These are normally laid on the ground surface. They may likewise be mounted on posts over the yield stature and turned through 90 degrees, to flood a rectangular strip. In rotatory type sprinklers, the most widely recognized gadget to pivot the sprinkler heads is with a little sled actuated by the push of water striking against a vane associated with it.

b) Perforated head type Sprinkler System:

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System

This system consists of pipes having holes or nozzles on their length through that water is sprayed under a calculative pressure. 

1) Perforated head type Sprinkler System method is typically designed for comparatively air mass (1 weight unit cm-2). the applying rate ranges from 1.25 to 5 cm per hour for varied pressure and spacing.

2) The sprinkler system is also classified on the basis of portability of equipment as follows; 

a) Portable Sprinkler System ;

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System

Portable or Compact sprinkler stands provide you the flexibility to have a solid and tough base that your sprinkler can work from yet additionally be mobile to water dry regions on a case-by-case basis. As we know that all the components of the portable system need to be moved, the labor requirement is quite high in this method But the initial investment in this type of system is quite less

b) Semi portable Sprinkler System;

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System
A Semi-Portable framework is like a versatile framework with the exception of the area of the water source and the siphoning plant being fixed.  Different segments are moved to start with one field and then on to the next. Such a framework might be utilized for more than one field where there is a lengthy mainline, yet may not be utilized for more than one farm except if there are extra siphoning units.

C) Stationary or Permanent Sprinkler System;

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System
An extremely durable framework has covered mainlines, subdomains, and laterals with a fixed nozzles plant or potential water source. Sprinkler spouts are for all time situated on every riser. Such frameworks are costly, anyway, these are appropriate for computerization. Extremely durable frameworks are reasonable for plantations.

Self-propelled sprinkler systems;

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System


There are self-propelled sprinkler systems that move laterally or radially around a central pivot feeding line. This portable system can be designed to cover an area ranging from three to four hectares to fifty to sixty hectares.
In an aeroponic system, nutrient solutions are sprinkled over the foliage in a regulated way. In mist chambers, phytotron and rhizotron irrigation are provided as aerosol droplets by sprinkling.
This method is advantageous, as water can be applied at a controlled rate and uniform distribution and high efficiency can be ensured. This method can be adopted in the case of almost all crops and is very popular in the case of cash and some orchard crops and in all types or nurseries. This system is especially suited to shallow sandy soils of uneven topography, where leveling is not practicable, and in areas where water and labor are scarce. 
On some soils with salinity problems, this system is advocated for the leaching of salt more effectively, for the emergence, and to secure the quicker and better growth of plants. Pesticides including herbicides and fertilizers have also been applied successfully by adopting this system. The sprinkler system is also used for cooling the crop during high temperatures and for frost control during freezing temperatures.
In temperate and humid climates evaporation loss from a spray is much the same as the loss from open water in surface irrigation; but in hot, dry climates evaporative loss can be excessive during the summer months and night irrigation alone is advisable. In less extreme arid conditions, high precipitation rates and sprinklers with large drop sizes solve the problem if they can be tolerated by crops and soil.
In some instances, water is carried to the open ditches laid at five to eight meters apart. The water is applied to the crop of low height or bare field by splashing with plates. Such a splash method of irrigation helps to moisten the dry surface soil for seed-bed preparation, leads to the early and uniform emergence of seedlings, and softens the surface crust if formed due to rainfall immediately after sowing seeds. In potato crops, the first irrigation before ridging and earthing up is mostly applied by this method.

How Sprinkler Irrigation System Response to Different Crops;

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System

Types of Sprinkler Irrigation System on the Basis of Precipitation ;


Type of Sprinkler


 Rate (mm per hour)

Low Volume Sprinkler

Less than 13

Medium Volume Sprinkler

13 – 25

Large Volume Sprinkler(Raingun)

Above 25

Sprinkler layout ;

Types and Features of Sprinkler or Overhead Irrigation System

Advantages of Sprinkler System ;

1) There are no water conveyance channels, hence it reduces conveyance loss.

2) These systems are suitable for all types of soil except heavy clay.

3) Sprinkler system saves lots of water up to 30% – 50 %.
Sprinkler system highly suitable for irrigation where the plant population per unit area is very high.
5) It enhanced crop yields.
6) It reduces soil compaction.
7) Due to the mobility of the system its operation is easy.
8) Highly suitable for undulating land.
Sprinkler system saves land as no bunds are required.
10) Use of Soluble fertilizers and chemicals is possible  

       in the Sprinkler system
Sprinkler system provides protection against frost and  
    also helps in the alteration of microclimate.
12) it reduces labor expenses.

Disadvantages of Sprinkler System 

1) Sprinkler system has a higher potential for evaporation

2) This system has wind drift issues compared to drip
3) Waters both crops and weeds
4) This system can not be used on crops that are susceptible to foliar diseases
5) Sprinkler  system has a higher potential for runoff and erosion compared to drip


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