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Bioreactors reduce nitrates in tile water


November 24, 2017
By Corn and Soybean Digest

Farmers looking for a method to help reduce nitrate flow from specific fields may want to consider constructing a woodchip bioreactor. The woodchip bioreactors acts as a filter to clean the water as it flows from the tile into the surface water body. The cost is often what is on a producer’s mind.

Dr. Laura Christianson, professional engineer and assistant professor in the department of Crop Sciences at the University of Illinois, presented a webinar for the Iowa Learning Farms and has been studying how bioreactors work and how farmers can benefit from them.

Bioreactors are subsurface trenches that can range from 50 feet to 120 feet and are filled with a 3-ft. layer of woodchips through which water is allowed to flow just before leaving the drain to enter a surface water body. The trench can help remove nitrates from 35 acres to 50 acres depending on the length and depth of the bioreactor. For the full story, click here.


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