The second blog on stewardship of XtendiMax and Engenia on Xtend crops will focus on nozzles. There is only one labeled nozzle and one orifice size that can be used to apply XtendiMax or Engenia over Xtend crops. That nozzle is Spraying Systems Turbo Tee Jet air Induction 04 (TTI11004) nozzle.
The TTI is the standard all others are measured against with respect to drift reduction. The nozzle is designed with 3 drift mitigating technologies in it. In research at the University of Nebraska it consistently results in the least amount of fine droplets (<150 microns) than other nozzles tested. This is important for stewardship of dicamba as droplets below 150 microns, and particularly below 50 microns, can hang in the air for a long time and be prone to drift.
A common question is will the lack of coverage shown with TTIs effect weed control. The larger droplets and less coverage on weeds is not an issue with systemic type herbicides like dicamba and glyphosate. Our research has seen time and time again that systemic type herbicides do not need a lot of coverage to provide good control.
On the flip side if one is going to switch to a contact herbicide like Liberty or Gramoxone then a TTI tip will not work. We have consistently seen very poor control with contact herbicides like Liberty when applied with a TTI nozzle compared to most any other nozzle (i.e. Wilger MR or a Spraying Systems AIXR). As a result if your sprayer is not set up with a turret system where you can quickly change nozzles, you need to consider getting outfitted with one. The one size fits all nozzle does not exist when TTI tips have to be used for some applications and different nozzles are must have for others. A turret system is faster, easier, and safer than having to physically change every tip on a big commercial sprayer.
Why the 04 orifice size? Quite frankly to slow down sprayer speed. With an 04 orifice size and an application rate of 10 gpa the days of traveling 15 mph or faster are over with a sprayer. The math does not work.
The operating pressure range for a TTI is 15 to 100 PSI. However the best pressure range to run this nozzle that will produce the best spray pattern and the least amount of driftable fines is 30 to 60 psi. In other words one should let the pressure gauge determine the speed of the sprayer. If your pump has to consistently run above 70 psi pressure to keep up with your speed, rest assured you are producing more fine droplets that can drift.
The TTI nozzles do not work well in pulse width modulating spraying systems (PWM). The air induction port on those nozzles are designed to work with a constant pressure, not with flow rate being controlled by a solenoid. As the nozzle cuts on an off with the PWM system the air induction nozzles sputter out those air induction ports resulting in a poor spray pattern. So if you are set up with a PWM system shut it off before you use TTI nozzles.
I have asked at every meeting I have attended this winter “have you purchased your TTI nozzles yet?” To date no one at any of these meetings has even checked into ordering these nozzles let alone having purchased them. I would suggest that you order your TTI nozzles very soon. A recent piece by Elton Robinson on AgFax would suggest that Spraying Systems, the manufacturer of the TTI nozzle, are not completely confident they can supply the demand for this tip over the next few months. The cost of outfitting a 100’ boom with TTI11004 nozzles runs about $350.00.