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Rainfall Simulator Illustration Title Large Simulator
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A larger rainfall simulator can be used in real field comparisons.  Here at Tribune, Kansas approximately 2 inches of precipitation was applied.  On the left is a true no-till field, that has not been tilled for over eight years.picture showing tilled and non-tilled areas of soil  On the right is a field that has been in reduced till for the same period.  Tillage in this case consists of blading periodically through the fallow period to reduce weed water use.  This field has been bladed three times since wheat harvest one year ago.

 

A closer inspection of the no-till shows very little runoff occurred, and little to no soil erosion can be seen.  Infiltration rates (water movement into the soil) remained highshowing a better picture of the non-tilled area demonstrating that non-tilled area has less soil erosion throughout the demonstration, showing the importance of maintaining residue on the soil surface.  Soil structure is maintained when tillage is not used, which leads to better infiltration rates over time.

 

picture showing the tilled area showing that there is a greater amount of soil erosion even there is a very less precipitationOn the other hand, the reduced till field showed significant puddling and runoff even after only a quarter of an inch of precipitation had been applied.  This picture shows field conditions following one inch of precipitation.  The raindrops do not penetrate the soil (puddle) and runoff the soil, starting the erosion process. Soil erosion can occur on any soil if left unprotected because of the lowered infiltration rates.  As the soil surface breaks down and seals, causes runoff, and subsequently soil erosion by water.

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