Today we’ll talk about that dreaded term — spray drift. It’s one of the basic principals of spraying that spray applicators do their best to control and there are a number of factors to consider. The type of spray drift we’re talking about is when an application like pesticides misses its intended target. It makes the task at hand a bit more complicated. You need to factor in wind, droplet size, height, materials used, and so much more.
Here we’ll walk through some of the drift reduction technologies and tips of the trade that you’ll benefit from in the long run, and that might make controlling it easier.
There is a range of drift reduction technologies out there. The most popular, and those that the EPA recommends, include:
As our friends at Hypro have stated, drift control spray tips are often the smallest and most overlooked components of a sprayer. The technology now involves air induction thus allowing for air-filled droplets that reduce drift significantly compared to conventional nozzles.
Spray Shields and Buffer Zones
These added barriers help to protect sensitive areas and vary greatly for each landscape, equipment and application type. Design of a buffer area depends on variables like spray method, wind, chemical type and the type of sensitive area that you’re trying to avoid. In general there is not a one-size-fits-all rule.
Drift-Reducing Adjuvant Chemicals
These drift control agents are mixed with your product to enhance performance by changing the droplet size. These adjuvants are used to control drift and slow evaporation once the application hits its intended target.
Now these and other spray drift technologies can be of benefit to applicators and the environment in general for a number of reasons. Here are the four benefits of implementing these new spray drift technologies:1. Reduce loss of chemicals, like pesticides
2. Keep more of the applied product on the intended target, such as on crops
3. Limit exposure to people, wildlife and the environment
4. Reduce risk of damage and liabilities from off-target drift
All in all, these drift-reducing methods should result in more products being deposited on the intended target and fewer issues with drift.