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Application with a machine

A chalking machine always is the preferred method because it produces a beautifully uniform spray pattern: the coating is of the same thickness throughout. This optimizes the desired effect on the crop’s production and quality. The correct use of the equipment, which furthermore must be well-maintained, is a requirement.

Required equipment

Application machine and pump set. Worldwide there are only a few suppliers of these machines. Well-known names are Van der Waay and Besseling. A pump set comprises a diaphragm pump suitable for pumping the spraying solution; one or more mixing tanks with mechanical mixers for optimally mixing the solution; and a high pressure hose from the pump set to the sprayer. We recommend using a diaphragm pump with a minimum capacity of 40 litres per minute at 40 to 50 bar.

Weather conditions affect quality

  • Apply the coating to a clean and dry greenhouse cover to obtain the best wear resistance.
  • Apply the coating during dry weather with relative humidity < 80% on a dry greenhouse. A wet greenhouse cover dilutes the layer. When the drying time is too long this may cause excessive run-off and therefore an uneven coating.
  • Keep an eye on the weather forecast. Do not apply during precipitation or when precipitation is forecast over the short-term (within 12 hours). Rain damages a coating that has not yet totally dried.
  • Apply at a temperature between 10 and 25 degrees Celsius (5 and 25 degrees Celsius for ReduSol and ReduClean). Otherwise the drying time will be too long and the coating will be wet during the night and may become damaged due to condensation.
  • Do not apply when windy (max. 7 km/hour). The layer may become too thin and overspray may occur.
Applying the coating

  1. Calculate the required total quantity of water and coating on the basis of nozzle type, driving speed and system settings. Approx 1,000-1,500 litres of spraying solution per hectare is required (total of water + ReduSystems product). 
  2. Fill a mixing tank of sufficient capacity with clean water.
  3. Pour the selected number of buckets of ReduSystems product into the mixing tank with water. 
  4. Mix the spraying solution with sufficient force to create a homogeneous solution. Check that there is no remaining concentrate at the bottom.
  5. Apply the solution evenly on the greenhouse cover. Driving speed, pressure and solution output across the entire spraying boom, must be in balance. This is the only way an optimal uniform result can be obtained. The machine’s manufacturer can assist with the necessary calculations to balance these factors.
  6. The pressure at the nozzles must staycontant and at the right level. A pressure gauge on the spraybooms is used to control this. The nozzle type determines the required pressure, usually 2 to 4 bar.

Removing a coating

  1. Determine the quantity of water and cleaning product and follow the same preparation instructions used for mixing the coating. 
  2. Verify that the drains and the surroundings are suitable for the flow-through of rinsing water. Prevent ingress if possible.
  3. Apply the  solution evenly on a dry greenhouse cover and let sit for at least 15 minutes before brushing it off. A strong rain shower within one week will also wash off the coating.
  4. Ensure that the coating is entirely moistened. The coating on missed sections will not be removed.
  5. To avoid temporary white discolouration do not discharge rinsing water to stagnant waters; install the drainage system below the water surface; and discharge the rinsing water to a large moving bodies of water with sufficient capacity, where allowed.
  6. If you discharge ReduSystems products into the reservoir, check the water’s usability afterwards, particularly the pH.

Dosing

ReduSystems products control the light entering the greenhouse. This benefits production and quality. The desired effect is highly dependent on the thickness of the coating layer. In other words, on the number of buckets product per hectare. Due to the machine’s precision 10% less product is required in comparison to manual application. We determine the optimal thickness on the basis of studies and we are constantly learning from actual practice. This means that our recommendation to use a specific number of buckets per hectare is well founded. The use of more or less buckets (or loss of product due to improper application) has adverse effects. Using fewer buckets than recommended reduces the intended effect on your crops. A shading product consequently might shade too little radiation or heat. Furthermore, low concentrations reduce the layer’s wear-resistance. When too many buckets are used the effect is reversed; in this case, you could lose too much growlight and thus compromise production or quality.

For every crop and situation in the world, the ReduWizard app on our website provides recommendations about the ideal product and the right quantities to be used.

Safety

Machine application is a very safe way of working.

  • Be sure to use fall protection when walking on the greenhouse cover.
  • If ReduSystems products come into contact with the skin or eyes, rinse off with water.
  • If ingested, contact a doctor.

 

Frequently asked questions

How do I apply ReduSol?

The best and longest-lasting results are obtained when the coating is applied to a clean, dry greenhouse roof, as follows:

  1. Fill the mixing tank with the required quantity of clean water and add ReduSol, stirring continuously.
  2. Stir the spray liquid frequently during application.
  3. Apply ReduSol evenly to the greenhouse surface, preferably using a spraying machine.
  4. Never use any non-ReduSystems shading products in combination with ReduSol.

The ideal weather conditions for applying ReduSol

  • An outside temperature between 5 and 30 ⁰C.
  • Wind speed of less than 2 m/s (7 km/h). A strong wind will cause product loss and a thinner layer than intended, plus the spray could blow onto nearby objects such as cars and buildings.
  • For fast drying: relative humidity (RH) < 80 %. The exact drying time also depends on other conditions (such as amount of applied ReduSol, outside temperature, glass temperature and wind speed). The coating should be dry before nightfall because condensation may damage the layer.
  • Do not apply ReduSol to a wet surface or during rainfall because this may create an uneven layer of coating on the glass.
  • Do not apply when rain is expected within six hours, since the coating is highly likely to be damaged or to be washed away completely.
How should I apply the coatings if I do not have a spraying machine?

For the best results, a coating must be applied to the greenhouse cover as evenly as possible, because an uneven layer may cause growth differences in the crop. It is possible to apply the coatings by hand, by machine, by airplane or helicopter.

A machine gives the most even layer as the equipment can be precisely adjusted to the type of product. It also minimizes the loss of product caused by excessive spraying.

Most of our products (except AntiReflect) can also be applied manually using a spray gun. The overall result depends on the quality and functionality of the spray gun, such as the flow speed, dilution of the shading material and the experience of the applier. More information about manual spraying can be found here.

Application by airplane or helicopter is also an option (except for AntiReflect and GS-4) and is especially suitable in the case of large greenhouses. However, the pilot must have the necessary know-how and experience, and the equipment must be of high quality and well maintained.

Can I apply layers of different products on top of each other?

Yes, it is possible to apply layers of different ReduSystems products on top of each other. For example, ReduSol applied on top of ReduHeat will increase the shading effect in the summer. 

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