The Effect of Boom Leveling on Spray Dispersion

Miguel Bustamante, Juan F. Vivanco, Travis A. Burgers

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Automatic boom height systems reduce the variability of agricultural sprayer boom height. When a boom is not at its target height, this can lead to uneven spray dispersion from the nozzles. Boom heights and sprayer position were previously measured in time for three commercially-available boom leveling systems for three test runs for at least three speeds over each of a mild, medium and rough terrain course. A computational model was created to use measured spray dispersion from a nozzle, measured boom heights in time, and measured sprayer position in time to calculate a spray coverage map. The model was used to calculate the spray dispersion performance of three automatic boom height control systems: John Deere BoomTrac ProTM (System A), Raven AutoBoom XRT® (System B), and Norac UC5TM Passive RollTM (System C) for three runs at one speed (26 km/h, 16 mi/h) on a medium terrain course. Spray dispersion error was calculated for the coverage map relative to the spray dispersion of a level boom for the same run. The model showed that the improved boom leveling performance of System B led to improved spray consistency. System B had significantly more consistent spray dispersion than System A on the R4045 and more consistent (but not significantly) spray dispersion than System C on the RoGator.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2023 ASABE Annual International Meeting
PublisherAmerican Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers
ISBN (Electronic)9781713885887
StatePublished - 2023
Externally publishedYes
Event2023 American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers Annual International Meeting, ASABE 2023 - Omaha, United States
Duration: 9 Jul 202312 Jul 2023

Publication series

Name2023 ASABE Annual International Meeting


Conference2023 American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers Annual International Meeting, ASABE 2023
Country/TerritoryUnited States


  • Automatic control
  • Boom control
  • Spray boom
  • Spray dispersion
  • Spray height
  • Spray pattern


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