The first PikoMeter has been installed in the East Columbia Basin Irrigation District (ECBID) located in North Central Washington State, USA.
The PikoMeter was installed on a canal very close to the city of Othello. Managing the supply of water at a canal offtake onto a farm lateral, it provides a consistent flow of water to the farmer customer, while recording accurate volumetric meter readings.
The PikoMeter is a 450mm diameter automated combined farm turnout gate with an integrated flow meter. It features Rubicon’s Sonaray technology, which uses ultrasonic sound waves to measure the velocity of water flowing through the meter. The integrated control gate continuously adjusts to pass the requested flow rate, even with fluctuating canal water levels. The accurately-measured water supply enables farmers to apply water to crops with a greater level of precision, which in turn reduces water runoff and improves yields.
ECBID’s meter is locally-managed using a keypad and LCD display and can be upgraded at a later date to be managed remotely using SCADA, if the district wishes.
Darren McGregor, Rubicon Water’s General Manager, North America said the PikoMeter was a “great addition to Rubicon’s metering line-up in the US”.
“We’re excited to make our newest, low-cost gate a reality in the USA market. With its combination of accurate measurement and control paired with newer construction techniques to bring cost down, I’m confident the PikoMeter will solve a lot of current challenges in our customer’s systems,” said Mr McGregor.
ECBID’s water is ultimately sourced from the Grand Coulee Dam. Vegetables and grains are predominantly grown in the district’s 62,000 irrigated hectares. ECBID is part of the Columbia Basin Project, which is the largest of the Federal Bureau of Reclamation’s projects. The project is working to increase the irrigated acreage, replace aging infrastructure and reduce reliance on the rapidly-depleting Odessa Aquifer by using more surface water.