MiniCSS: a software application to optimize crop irrigation and nitrogen fertilization strategies
AbstractWater resources are limited and agricultural input costs are steadily increasing; moreover, precipitation seems to be decreasing in amount or, at least, received in a more irregular manner. Correctly deciding irrigation and fertilization amount and time implies to simultaneously consider phenological and nutritional crop status, weather pattern during the irrigation season and taking into account the economic and energy budgets. To treat all these complexities, the use of crop simulation models is particularly indicated. Models are strictly connected to academic and research contexts and have not wide-melted farmers and agricultural technicians, despite they are strongly encouraged to optimize the use of water and fertilizer. MiniCSS, a software for the optimization of irrigation and nitrogen (N) fertilization by simulation is here presented. Its primary aim is to be easy to use, thanks to a reduced number of input parameters and a user-friendly dialog window. MiniCSS can perform i) annual/multiannual simulations, ii) simulation experiments by varying irrigation and fertilization intensity, iii) calibration of the model parameters and iv) optimization of other cultural practices. Textual and graphical results are reported as daily values, annual averages, cumulative probability and dose-response curves.
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Copyright (c) 2011 Alvaro Rocca, Francesco Danuso
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