Systems for the control and use of fluids and particles

Methods and apparatus for adjusting a delivery, distribution, emission, or spray of an elastic substance include contacting the adaptable material using a compatibly-selected kinetic energy flowing. The contact provides a motive force to move the adaptable material to or from an outlet of a spray fixture. The spray fixture is adjustable to emit many kinds of drops, mists, extrusions, emulsions, or fibers. The adjusting is based on characteristics of a feedstock material, the adaptable material, the compatibly-selected kinetic energy fluid, or mixtures thereof.


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This invention relates to the forming, shaping, control and application of pollutants and fluids like for example in agriculture and agricultural related fields. One example is that the formula of agricultural input, forming them to droplets orparticles, along with the distribution of these droplets or particles within a field. Another example is for the encapsulation of seeds without chemicals and biological agents or the encapsulation of compounds without biological representatives anddistribution of those encapsulated seeds or compounds or biological substances. Still another is for its suspension of seeds for fluid drilling of seeds without chemicals or biological substances.

It’s known to shape and spray fluids and suspensions with spraying methods. In certain programs, the fluids and suspensions are formed into droplets or aerosols and sprayed from the spraying methods. In other programs, the fluids formparticles or capsules regarding seeds or compounds.

One use of these spraying methods would be to apply agricultural inputs to agricultural areas. Commonly, the spraying methods include vehicles that carry the agricultural input and spray equipment that use the agricultural inputs out of the vehiclethrough fittings backed by booms on the vehicle. The spray equipment might include pumps for air and liquid for distributing the agricultural input.

In one kind of prior art spraying system with this use, the vehicles used to spray on the agricultural areas carrying large quantities of diluted active ingredients since it is hard to spray low quantities of carrier which may deliver moreconcentrated forms of the active ingredient. Moreover, the vehicles may be equipped using a high pressure source of atmosphere and/or other fluid and so can require one or more relatively large pumps to spray the liquid comprising the active ingredientbecause high pressure liquid or air pressure is necessary to form the spray and a large volume of liquid comprising the active ingredient. In some such systems, the fittings or nozzles are comparatively high above the target for its spray topermit the pattern of fluid to present an adequate field of coverage with the spray. Normally the pattern shape is dependent on the nozzle and contains a limited angle. One reason for ridding the active ingredient is since present spray equipment utilized inagriculture cannot spray viscous substance with the desired size drops and drop distribution and accurate low volume equipment is not economically accessible. Commonly water is used to dilute the active ingredient because it is: (1) economical; (2)benign to plants and advantageous to germs; and (3) widely accessible.

The former art spray systems have several disadvantages such as for example: (1) they need vehicles taking the agricultural inputs to carry heavier than desirable weights of agricultural inputs with the water carrier; (2) theyrequire the replenishment of the distribution of agricultural inputs taken from the spray vehicles occasionally, thus increasing the time and expense of spraying; (3) they cannot be utilized for the use of some valuable germs since themicroorganisms are killed by the high pressure fall upon discharge through the spray nozzles utilized at the prior art techniques for use of agricultural inputs; (4) the low viscosity agricultural inputs drift when sprayed as little drop sizes; (5) someof the carriers used for dilution, such as water, have high surface tension and form beads on contact as opposed to dispersing for example over a leaf; (6) the low viscosity sprayed drops have a tendency to split up because of reduced shear resistance, thus formingsmaller drops which are subject to greater drift; (7) a number of those carriers used for dilution, such as water, have erratic mineral content and pH variants; (8) the angle of the pattern of sprayed fluid in the nozzles is restricted thus requiringthe nozzle to be positioned at a high elevation over the spray target to obtain sufficient coverage but the high elevation increases drift; (9) using a few combinations of active components in conventional carriers in some circumstances causesprecipitation of active components (10) the prior art systems cannot effectively spray some contaminants such as particles which have absorbed active ingredients in them which should be published at a later time and/or environmental condition or over a timedinterval for instance they cannot spray viscous formulations which facilitate suspension of such substances; (11) the angle over which the spray has been discharged for hydraulic nozzles is not as elastic in previous art nozzles resulting in target coveragelimitations; (12) the conventional high pressure hydraulic atomization nozzles utilized, result in excessive nozzle wear and consequential variations in the distribution speed and frequent fluctuations in nozzles; (13) sprayer vehicle speed is restricted by thepressure because greater pressures are required for high rates of program and that contributes to small droplets that drift and there are pressure limits on the system components; and (14) a number of the substances utilized for carriers are reduced densityand/or disappear quickly thus increasing the propensity to drift. Moreover, on occasion, the drops lose a few carrier by the drops wind up with concentrations of substances that cause necrosis of crops which are not meant to beadversely influenced by the spray.

The prior art efforts to decrease drift that were confronted by a dilemma–small drop sizes increase drift problems but offer good coverage of the target and large drop sizes decrease ramble but offer poor coverage of the target. The higherconcentration sprays have an increased tendency to induce necrosis of crops. For example, some compositions of glyphosate sprays focus on plants immune to the effects of glyphosate (Round-up Ready plants are engineered to withstand the toxic effectsof glyphosate. Round-Up Ready is a trademark of Monsanto Company.) The prior art attempts to resolve this dilemma by compromising between drop size and drift and selecting special nozzles. The distinctive nozzles rely on air borne to the liquid tofacilitate atomization and also help in reducing liquid strain or the use of liquid pulse modulation systems. These prior art methods have downsides of still providing coverage less powerful than desired or more drift distances than desired andare restricted from the application rate adjustments that can be practically achieved as software vehicles change rate in order to maintain constant per unit of area region application rates.

Spray apparatuses are known for spraying viscous substances. The known types of spraying apparatuses have not generally been adapted for use in spraying agricultural input or for conditioning dirt or treating germs. Additionally, theknown spraying apparatuses for spraying viscous substances are not readily adjustable for correcting fall size, density or pattern of these drops in the field in accordance with conditions such as wind speed, space of spray fixture in the spraytarget, or rate of a ground car or plane.

Greater density materials have been available to use as carriers such as active ingredients but have yet to be utilized because of economical reasons or undesirable characteristics or even the belief that such materials would be difficult to spray since oftheir viscosity or density or even because of the habit of using water as the most important carrier substance. Many of the active ingredients are difficult to spray prior art stand-alone nozzles or atmosphere assist nozzles since they mostly require pressureagainst that an orifice to meter and atomize the materials and that cannot be reasonably accomplished with viscous liquids. The long recognized and reasonable practice has been to dilute the large viscosity active ingredients with low viscosity mobilecarriers such as water. However, it’s been found that this general prior art approach isn’t the best approach and also has the disadvantage of leading to a low concentration, greater weight and greater quantity load carried by the spray vehicle compared to isdesirable.

It’s been suggested in Hopp, et al., Laboratory Studies on Glycerin as a Supplement in Water Soluble Herbicidal Sprays,” American Journal of Botany, v. 33, n. 7, (July 1946) pp. 598-600, to include glycerin into herbicidal sprays to assist in uptake ofthe herbicide by plants. However, the inclusion of glycerin to sprays hasn’t yet been adopted, possibly because of the cost and the problem of spraying higher viscosity materials.


It is known from U.S. Pat.

Nos. 5,520,331; 6,598,802 B2; and 6,241,164 B1 to form bubbles and also to burst the bubbles to form a chemical mist for flame suppression. It is implied that the revealed device might be used for otherapplications requiring a chemical mist including the use of substances to vegetation.

The apparatuses and procedure disclosed in these patents have a drawback in that they aren’t adapted to be used with viscous materials nor accommodated to adjust drop size and supply in a way suitable for the application of many agriculturalinputs.


It is known by U.S. Pat.

No. 5,680,993 and Canadian patent CA 2,223,444 to form drops of agricultural inputs at reduced pressures by pumping a flow of agricultural input in the center of a flow of air in the same direction as the flow ofair. Other jets of air are directed at the flow of agricultural inputs in the side. This prior art device has the drawback of requiring the agricultural input to be pumped via a narrow conduit under pressure to the flow of air and thusis limited in handling viscous agricultural products, semisolids and mixtures of semisolids and particles.

It’s known to mix fluids and particles and to chemically or physically socialize them. Some coating procedures, by way of example, physically interact substances to conjure one within another and a few chemical processes such as combustion withinan internal combustion engine mix fuel and other gases such as air and sometimes water and then chemically combine the gas with oxygen from the atmosphere and physically interact with the gas, air and products of combustion together with the water if water is present tocreate mechanical motion. There are many such procedures that form, blend and interact distinct fluid materials for valuable purposes.

The prior art methods for mixing fluids and allergens and chemically or physically interacting them have some common pitfalls. By way of example, the size of drops or particles or period of the materials being mixed may not be as appropriate aspossible, the choice of materials or ratio of different materials to be interacted may lack some materials or include too many materials or not have a sufficient amount of any materials or the timing of the interacting of materials may not besuitable or the material compatibility may be for example concentration or time sensitive.

Fluid drilling systems which supply a combination of seeds and gel onto an agricultural field are known. One prior art fluid drilling device uses impeller pumps or peristaltic pumps or the like to extrude a combination of seeds and gel. The seedsare germinated before planting. Such procedures are shown in United Kingdom patent 1,045,732 and at U.S. Pat. No. 4,224,882. These apparatuses have a propensity to disperse seeds with irregular and badly controlled spacing between the seeds andunder some conditions harm seeds. Moreover, they are prone to preventing from the accumulation of seeds in capsules utilized in the device.

It is understood that an internal shipping tube diameter to seed diameter ratio of 3 to 1 is desirable for providing gel seed mixtures to a planter row. Additionally, when moving fluid gel seed mixtures in a tube, the seeds are propelled muchfaster at the middle line of the tube compared to at the side walls as a function of the laminar flow conditions that, exist for implants using a viscosity that suspends seeds. Because the tube-seed ratio must be so large, sufficient flow for fluid drilling oflarge seeds requires inordinate amounts of fluid and quite massive pumps to find the seeds delivered. The prerequisites for pump size and fluid levels increase exponentially since seed diameter increases linearly for the systems currently in use.

Additionally, it has been shown using peristaltic pump systems in seed densities in gel where the volume of gel to volume of seed ratio is significantly less than about four, regular blocking of this pump inlet port by seeds is advocated. The very same limitations applyto piston or air displacement systems. Gels continue to extrude while the seeds stack up in the interface as the quantity of seed in the mixture increases.

These pitfalls limit the potency of the current liquid drilling hardware for delivering big seeds, for using smaller quantities of gel to reduce gel cost per acre and for reducing the volume of gel that has to be carried by the plantingequipment. Furtherthis ratio limitation impacts the use of optimum concentrations of treatment chemicals or microorganisms in gels while being able to utilize low total amounts of treatment per acre through using for example, gel into seed ratios of 1to 1. Thus the physics of dispensing seeds suspended in non-Newtonian fluids imposes strict restrictions on the utility of the current commercial fluid drilling hardware. Attempts to reduce this problem have depended in certain cases on seeddetectors, and counters or counters that try to control the speed of dispensing of seeds in accord with the speed of travel of a tractor. Such an approach is revealed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,855,953. This strategy has not completely solved the problemin a decent method.

It is also known to use screw type mechanisms that receive and catch seeds carried along by a fluid like water or air and emit the seeds one by one. Such a device is disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 2,737,314 to Anderson. This apparatushas a drawback of damaging seeds and being comparatively complex and unreliable. Augers are famous for conveying thing from place to place but such augers have not been successfully accommodated up to now to fluid drilling apparatuses. Some such augershave utilized a stream of air at an angle to the flow of material to break off controlled spans of the material and such a device is disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 3,846,529. However, this patent doesn’t disclose any procedure of fluid drilling. Theaugers used in the prior art are not designed in a manner sufficient to separate seeds, to avoid plugging of their conduits carrying the seeds and gel to the nozzle where they should be expelled into the floor nor to maintain spacing between seedswhile transferring them across the auger.

It’s also known to use openers and planting shoes to prepare a furrow in which to deposit seeds. The prior art planting shoes have a drawback when used for fluid drilling because there is insufficient space to allow accurate deposit ofgel and seeds in a location shielded by the shoe. In certain prior art planters, additives such as growth stimulants, fungicides, herbicides and/or beneficial microorganisms are deposited separately from the seeds or coated on the seeds or deposited incarrier substances. The prior art device for applying additives normally residue granules. These apparatuses have a drawback because they waste expensive additives by applying them nonuniformly and in locations where they are not needed.Attempts to inoculate seeds with beneficial microorganisms other than Rhizobia haven’t been as effective as desired.

IP reviewed by Plant-Grow agriculture technology news

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