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What’s Next in The Strategy to Reduce Soil Compaction: Observations on the Value of CTIS

As discussed in the previous article (available here), as long as we are putting heavy implements on farm fields, soil compaction is a significant possibility. Lots of factors impact the severity of threat, like load, tire configurations (type, number, size), soil fitness and frequency of equipment passes.

We discussed how Central Tire Inflation Systems (CTIS) are a powerful tool in reducing the soil compaction threat. Eventually we may address soil compaction by eliminating or greatly reducing equipment load on soils by removing soil contact or greatly reducing the size of future farm equipment.

In this article we will showcase reductions in soil compaction by employing CTIS. While many management options can be adopted to lower compaction threats, we have found that CTIS is one of the most effective, yet many farmers overlook its value. CTIS is not appropriate everywhere. It best fits on implements that are or carry high weight, do considerable road travel loaded and have significant frequency in the field. Things like sprayers, manure/fertilizer spreaders, hay and forage wagons, large square balers and self-propelled forage harvesters among others. While equipment like combines and grain buggies carry significant weight, they don’t tend to travel loaded on the road so their typical tire pressure is lower than their loaded weight would dictate for on the road and therefore less in need of CTIS.

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