Valley Irrigation introduces Valley X-Tec, a new center drive that uses FastPass technology to operate up to twice the speed of a standard, high-speed AC center drives. 

The motor design provides constant torque at any speed, providing growers with unmatched control and additional options to maximize crop yields.

The patented alignment technology and robust DC motor keep the pivot moving at a smooth, consistent pace, even over varied terrain.

“We are doing a lot of research on how to increase yield,” says grower Galen Grimm of Northeast Kansas, where his pivots operate on hilly terrain. “The X-Tec plays into that because it provides totally uniform application and has the flexibility to run at different speeds for varying situations. The water application under that pivot is completely consistent, because it moves so smoothly.”

The drive technology allows the Valley X-Tec to move at speeds as low as 1 RPM – just 1% of maximum motor speed — or ramp up to a fast 136 RPM, giving growers the abilities to gain consistent application at any speed and to take on even the toughest terrain.

“While the power of the Valley X-Tec drive is attractive for running the pivot at lower speeds in difficult terrain, it’s really the high-speed capabilities that appeal to many growers,” says Valley product manager Christopher Righter. “It’s ideal for crops that need to be cooled every day, or to maintain proper surface moisture during germination.”

With FastPass technology growers have additional options for applying fertilizer through the pivot. Moving the pivot at a high speed also provides the option to fertilize through the leaves.

“The timing of foliar application can be tricky, and fertilizing through the pivot gives the grower more control,” says Righter.” “If the weather changes, the grower doesn’t have to wait for an aerial applicator or get a sprayer ready to apply the fertilizer or protective crop chemicals. He can just set the pivot to fertigate as the timing is right.”

The wide range of speeds available with Valley X-Tec technology makes variable rate irrigation (VRI) a natural fit. Varying irrigation under one pivot allows for simpler split-crop management. Irrigators can also program their center pivot to run at faster speeds over low spots, preventing over-watering in areas that need little or no water, while slowing down over areas that require more water.