Drip Infiltration Systems
Drip irrigation is the most efficient method of distributing wastewater to infiltration areas. It allows effluent to be dispersed in the biologically active soil zones a few inches below the surface without ponding, water contamination or smells. It also allows the efficient reuse of the treated water along with its beneficial nutrients for landscaping in a controlled and environmentally friendly fashion. We supply Geoflow pressure compensating drip tubing which is treated for root intrusion and an antimicrobial coating to inhibit biological growth on the inside walls of the tube and on the emitters.
Drip irrigation (known as drip distribution or drip feed systems) take up less infiltration area and can be used in areas with shallow unsaturated depths of soil. This results in a smaller land requirement for percolation areas so are ideal for small sites –both domestic and commercial.
How it works
A typical drip design is to insert the dripline into the existing soil using sub-surface pipe insertion machinery such as a mole plough or similar. The drip line is inserted at a depth of 150- 200 mm below the existing ground level. Grass should be mowed regularly in dry weather with light mowing machinery.
The dripline has a series of emitters spaced at 600 mm intervals in the drip tubing which are moulded into the dripline at the time of manufacture. Each emitter releases very small quantities (0.03 litres/minute) of water which drips into the soil when the design pressure is reached.
Drip can be used on large and small systems including existing problem sites. Drip systems will maximise the treatment capacity of the soil on sites with shallow or excessively free draining soils and will improve soil infiltration in the slow draining soils due to the very small controlled doses released from each emitter orifice of 0.03 litres/minute.
Key benefits are:
Can be used on difficult sites- high water tables, tight soils, rocky terrain, steep slopes, around existing buildings and trees.
The system requires no gravel. It is easy to install directly into indigenous soils and the natural landscape can be maintained.
Shallow installation by mole plough or similar maximises the use of “good” topsoil and installation depth to limiting soil horizon or watertable.
Drip can significantly reduce the amount and cost of fill material required. Drip distribution of wastewater (drip-feed) to infiltration areas is included in the Irish EPA Code of Practice 2009 under other infiltration systems. Its use is at the discretion of each Local Authority.
A growing number of drip installations have been installed - including two by Trinity College under the EPA STRIVE program in co-operation with Ash Environmental.