A new UNL mobile app — IrrigatePump — can help you identify irrigation pumping plants that are underperforming and need to be adjusted, repaired, or replaced with a better design. Developed by University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension, this app (UNL A10001) uses existing records to help determine when pumping plants should be tested by a professional.
An easy-to-use design guides the user to input six numbers related to pumping lift, pressure at the discharge, acre-inches of water pumped, fuel price, and total fuel used. The app then calculates a pumping plant performance rating. It also provides an estimated cost to bring the pumping plant up to standard and the number of years necessary to pay back the investment at various interest rates.
This calculator compares the fuel used for your pumping plant with the Nebraska Pumping Plant Performance Criteria (NPC). A pumping plant meeting the criteria is delivering the expected amount of useful work, measured as water horsepower hours (whp-h), for the amount of energy consumed. The NPC is based on field tests of pumping plants, lab tests of engines, and manufacturer data on three-phase electric motors. Survey results in the past have shown many pumping plants used 30-50% more energy than expected by the NPC. Surveys of relatively new pumping plants indicate they're operating at 82%-92% of the NPC. Results are anonymous but can be captured and emailed to yourself.
Developers: Thomas Dorn, UNL Extension Educator Emeritus; Derrel Martin, UNL water and irrigation resources specialist, and William Kranz, extension irrigation specialist
$3.99 (iTunes) or $1.99 (Google Play)