If you have an iPad, or one of the smart phones like the iPhone, or an Android, you might be interested in the app called Vector Sprays. It was developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service. The cost is Free.
The app was developed for Pesticide applicators, farmers, agronomists, consultants to use to lower the risk of fine spray droplets. It assists pesticide applicators making decisions relating to droplet size and potential for “off-target” movement of pesticides in vector control applications.
This app was developed by Brad Fritz and Clint Hoffmann, researchers at the Area wide Pest Management Research Unit's Aerial Application Technology group in College Station, Texas. The app uses information generated in the wind tunnels at the USDA-Ag Research Service - AAT unit. It calculates the size of spray droplets generated from various spray nozzles at various pressures with different spray solutions.
Pesticide applicators can plug in application parameters for their pesticide applications and see what droplet size range will be produced in vector control applications. Once they know the droplet size, they can make inferences on the potential for drift and/or efficacy and adjust their application parameters appropriately.
For our area, this droplet size calculator pertains to every vector control applicator in the US with commonly used hydraulic nozzles. The application allows for rapid assessment of the potential for drift. Applicators that are using nozzles by pressure and application speed and producing a lot of small fines (with a high potential for drift) can use the app to find other combinations which would produce less fines. The application is a unique tool to assess droplet size and drift potential and rapidly transfers what researchers are finding in the lab to how it can be applied in the field.
Ag producers have the responsibility to use their sprays wisely. It keeps the environment safer, and it increases the efficacy of the product towards intended use. This app becomes another tool for the farmer’s “tool box”.
For more information or assistance, please contact Allan Vyhnalek, Extension Educator, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Extension in Platte County. Phone: 402-563-4901 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org