Atmospheric Stability Intervals Influencing the Potential for Off-Target Movement of Spray in Aerial Application

Steven J. Thomson, Yanbo Huang, and Bradley K. Fritz


A tower was equipped with temperature and wind-speed sensors at different heights to monitor weather conditions needed to quantify atmospheric stability throughout the day. Data presented in this study showed consistent patterns of atmospheric stability occurring primarily between the hours of 18:00 and 06:00 hrs during summer months on clear days. Further, our results verified correctness of the three-degree rule in Arkansas when spraying on clear days in the summer months. This study is informative for pilots and farm managers to schedule aerial application assuring that spraying will not occur under stable atmospheric conditions to avoid off-target drift.


Aerial Application; Spray Drift; Temperature Inversion; Atmospheric Stability; Stability Ratio; Crop Protection

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