Role of Semi-Automatic Disc Filter (SADF) in Drip Irrigation System

Overview Of Micro Irrigation Systems

Worldwide adoption of Micro Irrigation Systems is increasing due to water stress in most of the countries where 70% of water is being used for irrigation only. The selection of the right products for a micro-irrigation system plays an important role in the overall efficiency of the system whether it emitting devices or filtration units.

Especially in farming segments of small and marginal farmers/ medium farmers, manual screen and disc filters, are quite popular though farmers had to face challenges with their existing filtration system resulting in poor and non-efficient irrigation. As the Filtration System is considered as the Heart of Micro Irrigation System, to keep it healthy and efficient, the selection of filters with innovative features is quite important.

Challenges Of The Existing Manual Filtration System For Drip Irrigation

  • Groundwater quality is degrading due to a higher rate of depletion, leading to frequent filter cleaning
  • Improper cleaning of filter cartridge by farmers at times
  • Electricity hours at the farm are limited, and the pump is turned off during irrigation to clean the filters
  • Damaging or Missing the components of the filter during dismantling or assembling the filter after cleaning
  • Misalignment of filter components during assembly causes water leakage from filters, resulting in water loss and a reduction in the micro irrigation system’s working pressure
  • Metallic filters corrode as a result of low water quality and fertilizers/chemicals used by farmers during irrigation
  • Often farmers are uneducated and can’t understand the pressure gauge readings, they are unable clean the filter in a timely manner, causing the pressure to drop in the irrigation system & become inefficient
  • If the pressure gauges used in micro irrigation systems for filtration are of poor quality, the farmers will not know when to clean the filters since their readings will be faulty
  • Many times laborers at farms who are new to the system, open the filter clamp for cleaning the filter when irrigation is on and during this process, they get badly hurt due to the pressurized condition of irrigation system

The aforementioned challenges pushed our R & D department to develop a cost-effective filtration system that can address all of these issues while also improving the irrigation system’s efficiency and durability.

The new product which evolved through this exercise is SEMI-AUTOMATIC DISC FILTER (SADF).

Unique Features of Automat’s Semi Automatic Disc Filter

  • No need for dismantling/opening of the filter during cleaning process It is an online cleaning process where the pump is not required to be shut down as compared to manual filters where it is mandatory
  • Cleaning is simple and easy, requiring only the rotation of the Control Handle on the top of the filter, which can be easily done by hand
  • A unique pop-up indicator is provided on the filter to monitor the pressure differential between the inlet and outlet ports. When the filter’s inlet pressure exceeds the outlet pressure by 0.5 kg/cm², a red button indicator pops up/appears, alerting farmers that the filter needs to be cleaned. This is useful for both literate and illiterate farmers.
  • Made of Engineered Plastic, it is non-corrosive, making it durable, efficient and long-lasting
  • High-quality Discs with an efficient filtration capacity
  • The system is easy to install and dismantle

Operating Principle Of Semi Automatic Disc Filter (SADF)

The handle on the top of the SADF is kept aligned horizontally to the header unit during Irrigation/Filtration mode, however, the handle is rotated at a 90-degree angle to the header unit during Backflush/Cleaning mode. The water cleaning procedure in Irrigation/Filtration mode is from the outside in, whereas in Backflush/Cleaning mode it is from the inside out.

When the red button of the Pop-up Indicator pops up during Irrigation/Filtration mode owing to pressure differential, the drain valve, which has been closed during this mode, must be opened, and the filter handle must be rotated to 90 degrees angle at the same time.

This rotation operation must be repeated 4-5 times smoothly within 30-45 seconds, after which the handle must be oriented in irrigation mode and the drain valve closed. When the Red Button of the Pop-up indicator disappears, the filter has been cleaned. If the red button does not pop down after performing the backflushing mode exercise, continue the operation until it does.