Ree Idro-S-IP

A.Y. 2020/2021
3
Max ECTS
44
Overall hours
SSD
AGR/08
Language
Italian
Learning objectives
The Lab intends to experiment the innovative procedures of precision agriculture, particularly: i) proximal survey to investigate the soil variability, ii) creation of maps of soil properties, iii) creation of prescription maps for precision irrigation.
Expected learning outcomes
The student acquires the know-how (i.e. knowledge and practical and operational and skills) relative to: i) the proximal surveys to describe the within-field spatial variability of soils, and the soil sampling; ii) the analytical measurements in laboratory for the physical-hydrological characterization of soils; iii) the use of GIS and dedicated softwares for data analysis and creation of maps of homogeneous management zones and of soil properties, and finally of irrigation prescription maps. Through simple modeling tools, the student will be able to simulate the irrigation management according to the prescription map (i.e. Variable Rate Irrigation), to assess the effects of VRI on the water consumption.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Responsible
Lesson period
Second semester
The lessons and the activities relative to data analysis and the creation of soil variability maps and irrigation prescription map by using GIS and dedicated softwares will be held on the Microsoft Teams platform. They can be followed both synchronously on the basis of the first semester schedule, and asynchronously because they will be recorded and left available to students on the same platform. The analysis will be carried out on the data collected in the campaigns of the years 2019 and 2020
The field activities related to proximal survey with geophysical sensors, soil sampling, and measurement of soil saturated hydraulic conductivity, as well as the laboratory activities to measure the physical and hydrological properties of soil samples, will be replaced by videos illustrating the procedures for soil sampling and for the analytical and field measurements. These videos will be uploaded to the Microsoft Teams platform
The program and reference material will not change.
The presentation of the results will be held on the Microsoft Teams platform, through webinar
Course syllabus
The course takes place in the Second Semester, in September at the end of the cropping season and after the harvest. Field activities are carried out at the farm "A. Menozzi " located in Landriano (PV). The course consists of 3 CFU, corresponding to 75 hours. The activities take place over 8 consecutive days (weekdays)
The overall 75 hours are divided as follows:
- introduction to the procedures adopted in precision agriculture to monitor and manage the within-field variability (4 hours): soil survey with geophysical sensors to detect the spatial variability of soils; creation of the map of homogeneous management zones; soil sampling for the characterization of each homogeneous zone and the creation of soil properties maps; creation of the irrigation prescription map. Introduction to the use of a soil hydrological balance model to simulate the management of variable rate irrigation
- field activities (20 hours), in groups of about 4 people: soil survey with an EMI geophysical sensor; soil sampling; field measurements of the saturated soil hydraulic conductivity
- activity in the soil laboratory (7 hours), in groups of about 4 people: measurement of texture on disturbed soil samples; water retention measurements (Field Capacity and Withering Point) on undisturbed soil samples
- activities in the computer lab (20 hours), in groups of about 4 people: analysis of the data acquired with the EMI sensor to obtain the map of the homogeneous management zones and choose the locations of the sampling points within each zone; analysis of the infiltration measurements collected in the field to estimate the saturated soil hydraulic conductivity; creation of the irrigation prescription map; use of a soil hydrological balance model to simulate the management of variable rate irrigation and assess the resulting water savings compared to traditional irrigation management.
- individual activities (24 hours): to analyse data and interpret results, write a final report, prepare a presentation of the results for a final webinar.
Prerequisites for admission
No prior knowledge is required
Teaching methods
The course includes only 4 hours of lectures, to introduce the procedures adopted in precision agriculture to monitor and manage the within-field soil variability.
The student directly experiences these procedures (i.e 'learning by doing'), through activities in small groups of about 4 people which are: (i) field activities (22 hours), to detect the soil spatial variability and collect soil samples, (2) laboratory activities (7 hours), for the physical and hydrological characterization of soil samples, (iii) activities in the computer laboratory (22 hours), to analyse the data and create the map of homogeneous management zones and the irrigation prescription map, and finally to simulate the management of the variable rate irrigation. Further 24 hours are dedicated to individual activities, to analyse and interpret data, write a final report, and prepare the presentation of the results for a final webinar
Attendance is mandatory
Teaching Resources
Slide of the lectures
Tutorial of the analysis procedures to create soil variability maps, the map of homogeneous management zones, and the irrigation prescription map
Tutorial of laboratory procedures to measure soil texture and water retention
Tutorial of the procedures to analyse the infiltration measurements collected in field for the estimation of the saturated soil hydraulic conductivity
Complete database of the measurements acquired in field and laboratory
Assessment methods and Criteria
The skills acquired are verified through the delivery of a written report (in English), illustrating the case-study, the methodologies used and the results obtained
AGR/08 - AGRICULTURAL HYDRAULICS AND WATERSHED PROTECTION - University credits: 3
Field activity: 16 hours
Computer room practicals: 16 hours
Laboratories: 8 hours
Lessons: 4 hours
Professor(s)
Reception:
friday, 10.30 am - 12.30 am
Hydraulics section