Reverse Osmosis Subsurface Drip Irrigation

Ref: 11869
A new sub-surface drip irrigation technology that enables crop producers to use brackish water as a source of irrigation for high value crops

Key advantages
  • No pre-treatment of brackish water required
  • Low pressure tubing, natural process driven by plant and soil
  • Water is only supplied when and where needed by the plant
  • Low cost and environmentally friendly

Background

In many agricultural precincts there are large numbers of existing groundwater bores that access aquifers containing brackish water.

While there are ways to treat brackish water for irrigation, these methods are generally either ineffective or high cost.

This new technology is relatively cheap to purchase with the operating costs comparable to conventional sub-surface irrigation systems.

The invention

The inventors of this technology have used the plants themselves to create the pressure gradients required to draw water through reverse osmosis membranes. They use a salt selective semi-permeable barrier (similar to a reverse osmosis or RO membrane) in the lumen of the tube line, to supply water to the crop from brackish water.

Applications

Subsurface drip irrigation.

Principal inventors