FUEL CONSUMPTION IN MINIMUM TILLAGE VARIANTS COMPARED TO CLASSICAL MAIZE CULTIVATION SYSTEM AT THE DIDACTIC STATION IN TIMISOARA (ROMANIA) PUBLISHED

Lorin Piloca, Aurel Lăzureanu
In this paper we present a synthesis of the results obtained experimentally concerning fuel consumption in different minimum tillage variants compared to the classical system. Minimum tillage method is a concept that has been adopted quicker than maize hybrid adoption 50 years ago. Due to the small ratio between production costs and delivery prices of agricultural produce, more and more farmers appeal to different methods of minimum tillage and no-till as a means to reduce expenses with labour force, machines and fuel and as a means to cultivate more, as well. Romanian literature shows that in the conventional system, soil works need 35-60% of the fuel necessary to set and maintain a crop. Research and the expansion of minimum tillage systems have become important since the necessity to reduce production costs and the risks of soil degradation, setting, and erosion. Research in the last ten years have pointed out the fact that applying variants of the non-conventional soil working systems leads to important reductions of the fuel consumption both on area unit and per production unit.  Maize cultivation in our country using technological methods specific to the unconventional soil working system has a series of technical and economic advantages. Reducing fuel consumption means smaller production expenses which makes agricultural production process more efficient economically. Research data show the fact that in order to obtain an increase of agricultural production of 1% we need a fuel consumption of 2.5%. One of the important factors characterising cultivation with a small number of soil works is fuel consumption. This is why we made, between 2006 and 2008, at the Didactic Station in Timisoara, measurements of the fuel consumption in different variants of soil works. The experimental field was set at the Didactic Station in Timisoara on a vertic chernozem strongly gleyied with the following profile: Ap - Ap - Amk - A/Cyk - CykGo - CCaGo - CcaG - CcaG 0 - CcaGr. For the experiments, we used as a source of power the tractor U-650 and the tractor Case 180 CP and for sowing, in the variants V 1 -V 6 we sued the sowing machine SPC 8. The highest fuel consumption was in the classical soil work variant – plough + disc harrow, where we used 111.10 l/ha, minimum tillage being done with a consumption of 92.19 l/ha in the variant V 2 (disc harrow with 2 passages), i.e. 82.90% compared to the control and 98.10 l/ha, i.e. 88.30%, in the variant V 5 (chisel + combined rotary harrow) compared to the control.
classical tillage; minimal tillage; fuel consumption
Presentation: oral

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