Non-destructive characterization of physical and chemical clogging in cylindrical drip emitters

October 27, 2020

Venkata Ramamohan Ramachandrula (1,2), Ramamohan Reddy Kasa (1)
Heliyon, 6, Issue 10, October 2020. DOI: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2020.e05327


Civil engineering, Chemical engineering, Materials characterization, Agricultural engineering, Irrigation, Agricultural water management, Drip emitter, Chemical clogging, Emitter geometry


Characteristics and deposition pattern of clogging material on cylindrical drip emitters was studied using nondestructive methods of evaluation. Two sets of four cylindrical emitter samples were collected from farm lands. One set of sample emitters was analyzed using Computed Tomography (CT). Other set was dissected and the clogging material extracted was analyzed using Energy Dispersive X-Ray Fluorescence (EDXRF) and X-Ray Diffraction (XRD). CT scans revealed the geometric properties of emitters and the spread of clogging material on the emitter surface. EDXRF analysis found statistically significant inverse relationship between the proportion of physical clogging and chemical clogging materials. XRD analysis indicated presence of physical and chemical clogging materials in their crystalline forms. Emitters having transverse flow path and the boundary optimized with curvature found with the least deposition of physical clogging materials. Corresponding proportion of chemical clogging (as Ca) was found to be much higher. All the samples were found with more clogging material closer to the outlets. Efforts to optimize emitter geometry shall also take into account the outlet area optimization and chemical clogging for obtaining best results.

How Our Software Was Used

Dragonfly was used to process 3D images.

Author Affiliation

(1) Water and Livelihoods Foundation (WLF), 12-13-451, Street no.1, Tarnaka, Secunderabad, 500017, India.
(2) Research Scholar, JNTU, Hyderabad, 500085, India.
(3) Centre for Water Resources (CWR), Institute of Science and Technology (IST), JNTU, Hyderabad, 500085, India.