New Cleaner and Cleaning Method for Soybean Herbicides
Sustainable Production
(none assigned)
Lead Principal Investigator:
Zhijun Liu, Louisiana State University AgCenter
Co-Principal Investigators:
Project Code:
Contributing Organization (Checkoff):
Institution Funded:
Brief Project Summary:

For years concerns about herbicide residues have remained. Even if standard cleaning protocol is strictly followed, crop injury from residual herbicides deposited in the spray equipment can still occur. This is especially a concern to soybean crops, which are very sensitive to herbicides like 2,4-D and Dicamba. The concern also limits what herbicides can be used on soybean or if sprayer can be used for operations in soybean fields after use of other herbicides in other crops such as corn and cotton. Even if small amounts can cause damage. Operators of spray equipment are advised to properly clean sprayer equipment between tank loads to avoid any possibility of causing crop injury. Conventional...

Information And Results
Final Project Results

In 2019, we prepared a new batch of the new botanical cleaner and evaluated its biological and physicochemical stability under refrigeration and room temperature. The cleaner water solution was stable for at least three months under both conditions, showing none of the signs of cloudiness caused by microbials or physical precipitation. We validated the effectiveness of the new batch in cleaning 2,4-D amine from the contaminated hose and proved it was more effective than tap water. We then tested the stable cleaner to remove the wettable powder herbicide atrazine in our miniature lab model. The rinsate was analyzed on HPLC to determine the concentration of atrazine. Tap water was used as a control. The cleaner removed 22 fold more atrazine than tap water. A question was asked at last year’s board meeting if the new cleaner can be used more than once, i.e., repeated uses of the same cleaner solution. Positive answer would improve the cost-effectiveness as the cleaner might be more expensive than some of the commercial tank cleaners such as Protank or WipeOut. We found a negative answer using 2,4-D amine as the test herbicide that the cleaner cannot be used once it was used. In fact, we discovered that the repeated use of the contaminated cleaner only added more residues back to the hose than it was supposed to clean, thus less out into the rinsate. We spent quite some time to find out why and whether the 2,4-D (1) had reacted with the cleaner to degrade , (2) had degraded in rinsate when it was stored for a week under room temperature, and (3) had become dead volume by repeated loading of 2,4-D residues because of the use of contaminated rinsates. The conclusion is none of these is the case and the repeated use of contaminated cleaner is a bad idea. Whether this phenomenon is exceptional to 2,4-D amine only or common to other herbicides, especially those in the EC formulations remains to be a question.

The United Soybean Research Retention policy will display final reports with the project once completed but working files will be purged after three years. And financial information after seven years. All pertinent information is in the final report or if you want more information, please contact the project lead at your state soybean organization or principal investigator listed on the project.