Hydrogen peroxide is one of the most powerful known oxidizers. It always decomposes in an exothermic reaction into water and oxygen. Presently there are two accepted methods for applying hydrogen peroxide

The global market for micro irrigation systems is rapidly expanding, and will be worth $5B by 2019, but is suffering from the ongoing setbacks of sprinkler tubing and dripper clogging. The existing solutions are complex, expensive and require the handling and polluting of dangerous toxic chemicals. AgroBoost delivers a cost-effective, reliable, long-term operation maintenance solution. AgroBoost is the new no-headache green solution for the continuous injection of low dosage hydrogen peroxide. This new irrigation chemigation injector reduces sprinkler tubing and dripper clogging and increases dissolved O2 in the water to support optimal root function in most plants.

The micro irrigation systems industry has many players, (small, medium, and large) with companies across the globe competing for market share. New product launches and development are consistently the most preferred growth strategy in the micro irrigation systems market, resulting in increasing geographic presence and product portfolio. IAWT anticipates having a 2% market share of this $5B industry by 2019 with annual revenue of $100M.

The Micro Irrigation systems market – Growth and Restraints

Agriculture consumes a major share in the total water usage worldwide. Irrigation of agricultural lands accounted for 70% of the water used worldwide. In several developing countries, irrigation represents up to 95% of all water uses.

The micro irrigation systems market is one of the fastest growing segments for global agriculture industry. The major factors driving the demand for micro irrigation systems globally are its reduced water usage, agricultural chemicals and fertilizers usage, better crop yields, and higher efficiencies compared to the other irrigation types such as flood irrigation.  Due to the increasing problems of water scarcity, governments of various countries such as India, China, and Israel are providing subsidies to encourage the adoption of micro irrigation systems for water saving.  Elsewhere, in the USA, Asia Pacific and Africa, the growth of micro irrigation systems is particularly high with growing farmer awareness for water conservation and concern for improving the crop yield in terms of quality and quantity. Drip irrigation uses 50 to 65 percent less water than traditional irrigation methods and increases crop yields between 50% and 140%, depending upon the crop.

Israel based Netafim is the leading player in the global micro irrigation systems market. Jain Irrigation follows Netafim and the other important players in the global micro irrigation systems market include John Deere & Company, EPC Industries, Valmont Industries Inc, and Lindsay Corporation among others.

Despite the growth of micro irrigation systems market there remains various restraining factors limiting the adoption of these technologies. The major components of sprinkler irrigation system include tubing, pumping unit, sprinkler heads, and couplers. Among these components, sprinkler tubing is the most costly component, costing approximately $1000/acre. Sprinkler tubing and dripperlines require a high initial investment and continuous costly maintenance. The maintenance requires technical expertise and the handling and polluting of toxic dangerous chemicals. Therefore many farmers avoid adopting a micro irrigation system as it appears to be unworkable and uneconomical. Alternatively even after the initial setup expense, the short lifespan of the sprinkler tubing and dripperlines used in micro irrigation, can force the farmer to abandon the system. 

Fifteen years after the Maharashtra government, in India, decided to support Israel’s drip irrigation method, the projected savings for farmers haven’t been achieved despite the high subsidy expenditure. They announced that “Drip irrigation is essential and brings good results. But the government will not only have to provide financial support for the drip infrastructure but also sustain its maintenance and repair. Farmers make a one-time investment and use it for three to four years. And then when it requires repairs or replacement it is discarded thus defeating the purpose of drip irrigation.” With AgroBoost the maintenance cost is simple and predictable and can be factored in to the government subsidy. Extending the lifespan of the sprinkler tubing and dripperlines, with excellent maintenance, is worth paying for.

Maintaining Micro Irrigation Systems

All micro Irrigation systems require chemigation to minimize and avoid tubing and dripper clogging. Even though recent innovations in tubing dripper design have made clog-resistant dripperlines available, the nature of agricultural water sources, nutrient injection practices, natural limitations of filtration equipment and the general agricultural growing environment make routine maintenance a priority. Deposits are usually prevented by applying chlorine and acid during irrigation, which are both dangerous to handle and pollute the soil and crops. The greener alternative is hydrogen peroxide that is environment friendly, does not contaminate the soil, does not harm the aquifer, and makes more oxygen available for the soil and the plants.

Hydrogen peroxide is effective for the following:

  • To prevent the accumulation of bacterial slime in the sub-main pipes and dripperlines.
  • To clean irrigation systems of accumulated organic deposits and bacterial slime.
  • To oxidize micro-elements (such as iron and sulfur) and trace elements (such as manganese), and

Prevent bacterial propagation.

  • To increase oxygen levels at the plants roots to encourage rapid healthy root growth
  • To improve the main and secondary filtration under high organic-load conditions.
  • To prevent and eliminate water odors and interference with biological activity.
  • To reduce BOD/COD values by oxidizing organic and inorganic polluting materials.

Hydrogen peroxide is one of the most powerful known oxidizers. It always decomposes in an exothermic reaction into water and oxygen. Presently there are two accepted methods for applying hydrogen peroxide

1. Continuous injection with low dosage

Hydrogen peroxide is injected continuously during the entire irrigation cycle. This is the most efficient method, but the consumption of hydrogen peroxide is the highest and is generally considered unworkable and uneconomical.

2. Selective injection

The frequency of this selective treatment is determined according to the water quality in the system, and could be daily, weekly, monthly, etc. Hydrogen peroxide is injected during the last hour of irrigation. With this method, both the consumption and the efficiency are lower than with continuous low dosage injection of hydrogen peroxide.

The Natural Continuous Hydrogen Peroxide Production Injector

The AgroBoost system is a patent pending invention that facilitates the on-site continuous production and injection of hydrogen peroxide into the irrigation water. The dissolved hydrogen peroxide is produced from the elements of air and water, and is injected continuously during the entire irrigation cycle. This has long been recognized as the most efficient maintenance method, but until now has been largely considered to be unworkable and uneconomical.

A process to produce hydrogen peroxide directly from the elements has been of interest for many years. Direct synthesis is difficult to achieve as, in terms of thermodynamics, the reaction of hydrogen with oxygen favors production of water. Previous systems for direct synthesis have been developed, most of which are based around finely dispersed metal catalysts. None of these has yet reached a point where they can be used for industrial-scale synthesis. The AgroBoost system produces a continuous low dosage of hydrogen peroxide ideal for continuously injection during the entire irrigation cycle.

The AgroBoost system then feeds the hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) via a venturi into the irrigation system. With point of entry as close as possible to the irrigation system pump, preventing the growth of bacterial slime in the main pipe and protecting the irrigation system. The venturi provides extremely efficient gas-into-liquid transfer. The Hydrogen peroxide remains thermodynamically unstable and then decomposes to form water and oxygen 2H2O2 → 2H2O +O2 hereby introducing oxygen into the irrigation stream. This O2 remains dissolved in the water to support optimal root function, microbial activity, and mineral transformations, leading to enhanced yield and water use efficiency. 

The AgroBoost replaces the need for chemical Hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide, both in pure or diluted form, can pose several risks, and needs to be stored in a cool, dry, well-ventilated area and away from any flammable or combustible substances. Injecting Hydrogen Peroxide into an irrigation water containing fertilizer is not hazardous and avoids the direct contact between Hydrogen Peroxide and dry fertilizers - which may otherwise cause an explosive thermal reaction with the ammonia. The AgroBoost Generator further avoids any handling of chemical Hydrogen Peroxide which would carry its own risks of contact with fertilizer remains, and contact with eyes or skin.

 AgroBoost delivers a cost-effective, reliable, long-term operation solution.  The venturi injector works by forcing water through a conical body, creating a pressure differential between the fluid inlet and outlet ports, which in turn creates a vacuum inside the injector body. This vacuum now allows the dissolved hydrogen peroxide to be added into the flowing water stream via the suction port on the injector. This method of application has important advantages:

  • Very high gas-into-liquid transfer rate
  • Minimal maintenance required
  • More controlled & consistent over time
  • Works well in both pressurized and unpressurized fluid streams

The AgroBoost Generator is generally set up in-situ to produce a continuous injection hydrogen peroxide into the water flow. The flow rate of water, in the treated system (m3/h) produces hydrogen peroxide from the treated air–water interface. The injection rate is hereby automatically adjusted to the flow rate of water in the treated system (m3/h) to consistently deliver a residual concentration of approximately 5ppm - with measurements taken, at the point furthest from the injection point, at the final end of the dripper line.

 AgroBoost Applications

As drip irrigation is the most efficient method of irrigation, it is largely being used for supplying agricultural chemicals and fertilizers to the plants/crops. Pesticides and fertilizers are dissolved in water and injected into the irrigation system and distributed to the plant’s root zone. These methods of chemigation and fertigation are becoming popular as there is lesser usage of fertilizers and pesticides and yet there is an increase in crop yields. The AgroBoost System will now use the same process to maintain Sprinkler tubing and dripperlines so that micro irrigation remains a long-term workable and economical solution.

The global population recently crested 7 billion and is projected to pass 9 billion by 2050. An ever-larger portion of Earth’s residents live in cities without producing their own food. At the same time, our dominant food paradigm is breaking down: climate change, increasing droughts, soil depletion and disease, excess fertilization, phosphorus scarcity, water pollution, chemical overloads, pollinator destruction, and biodiversity loss threaten our business-as-usual approach to food production. In recognition of these concerns, consumers and retailers are increasingly demanding safer, high-quality foods with less unpaid burden on our shared environment and public health. Hydroponics and Drip Irrigation are agricultural technology and practices that increasingly help feed the cities of the future while meeting customer demands and ensuring the health of ecological systems that sustain a livable world. The AgroBoost Continuous Injection Hydrogen Peroxide Generator has a significant role to play in efficiently maintaining the hydroponic and irrigation systems and improving the crop yields.

The Medical and Recreational Marijuana Growing industry has also experienced a surge in industry revenue thanks to favorable legislation toward growing and distributing cannabis for medical purposes. Cannabis is an example of many species of plants that can be fed a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water as a fertilizer and disease deterrent, resulting in healthier plants. With the AgroBoost continuous Injection Hydrogen Peroxide Generator - Hydrogen peroxide can be continuously added to the water in hydroponic environments at the ideal dosage and when the treated water is also used to sprout seeds before planting they sprout quicker and grow stronger.