Tillage and Split N-Fertilization Effects on Subsurface Drainage Water Quality and Crop Yields

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1988
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Kanwar, Rameshwar
Baker, James
Baker, D.
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Kanwar, Rameshwar
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Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Since 1905, the Department of Agricultural Engineering, now the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE), has been a leader in providing engineering solutions to agricultural problems in the United States and the world. The department’s original mission was to mechanize agriculture. That mission has evolved to encompass a global view of the entire food production system–the wise management of natural resources in the production, processing, storage, handling, and use of food fiber and other biological products.

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In 1905 Agricultural Engineering was recognized as a subdivision of the Department of Agronomy, and in 1907 it was recognized as a unique department. It was renamed the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering in 1990. The department merged with the Department of Industrial Education and Technology in 2004.

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1905–present

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  • Department of Agricultural Engineering (1907–1990)

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Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering
Abstract

Field experiments were conducted to study the effects of no-till and conventional tillage, and single and slit N-fertilizer applications, for continuous corn production on the leaching of nitrate-nitrogen (NO3-N) through subsurface drainage water and below the root zone. The comparison between conventional and no-till was made by applying a single application of 175 kg-N/ha at the time of planting, and the comparison between single and split N applications was made for the no-tillage system. Six experimental plots, each drained with a single subsurface drain, were intercepted by installing sumps for measuring drain flow rates and collecting drainage water samples for NO3-N analyses. Also, four sets of piezometers were installed for deep water sampling. In the first year of the experiments, tillage and N-fertilizer management schemes did not significantly affect NO3-N concentrations in drainage. However, in the third year, the average NO3-N concentrations in drainage from conventional tillage plots were significantly greater than those of no-till plots when a single application of 175 kg-N/ha was made. The results of this study indicate that split N-applications totaling 125 kg/ha reduced NO3-N concentrations in drainage compared with a single, higher rate of application of 175 kg/ha for the no-tillage treatment.

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This article was published in Transactions of the ASAE 31 (1988): 453–461, doi:10.13031/2013.30730. Posted with permission.

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Fri Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 1988
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