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Publication > Issue > Articles

The rise and rise of precision agriculture

Summary

Precision agriculture allows fertilizers to be applied more efficiently. Variable rate application places nutrients exactly where they are needed in the right amounts – instead of being applied uniformly across the whole field. This reduces both input costs and environmental impacts. Careful calibration of fertilizer applications also ensures a more uniform crop response, improving yield and quality and boosting farm profits.

Abstract

A four billion dollar market Precision agriculture has been in the news lately. In March, consultancy Informa forecast that the global precision farming market would reach $4 billion this year, driven by an impressive 13 percent annual growth rate. The adoption of increasingly sophisticated crop nutrition technology is playing a major role in growing this market. Keywords: Agronomy, Precision agriculture, Precision farming, Digital farming, VRA, Variable rate application, VRT, Variable rate technology, Nitrogen sensor, Monsanto, BASF, Climate Corporation, Trimble, Agri-trend, SMART, Xarvio, SmartFarm, YaraPlan, Echelon, NutriNet, N-Sensor, Isaria, GreenSeeker, Mosaic, Nutrien, Haifa, Yara, K+S, CF

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Nigeria's world-class nitrogen industry

Summary

Dangote's 2.6 million tonne capacity urea plant in Lagos State, Nigeria, is nearing completion. It will join two existing plants operated by Notore and Indorama and will more than double the country's urea production capacity. We report on Nigeria's emergence as a production and export hub for nitrogen fertilizers.

Abstract

Despite its oil wealth, Nigeria’s $55 billion agricultural industry remains the country’s largest economic sector, contributing almost 25 percent to the nation’s GDP and employing two-thirds of the entire labour force. Keywords: Country report, Nigeria, Africa, Nitrogen, Ammonia, Urea, Projects, Investment, Production, Trade, Supply, Demand, Exports, Notore, Indorama, Dangote, Brass Fertilizer

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Tessenderlo Kerley International

Summary

We profile Tessenderlo Kerley International. This newly-formed business unit brings together all of Tessenderlo Group's international crop nutrition products under the umbrella of its Crop Vitality brand.

Abstract

Last November, Tessenderlo Group announced the merger of its two separate crop nutrition businesses – SOP Plant Nutrition and Kerley International – creating a single new business unit, Tessenderlo Kerley International. Keywords: Belgium, Tessenderlo Kerley International, Tessenderlo Group, SOP Plant Nutrition, Kerley International, Crop Vitality, SOP, Sulphate of Potash, Liquid fertilizers, Thio-Sul, KTS, CaTS, GranuPotasse, SoluPotasse, K-Leaf, Urea ammonium nitrate, UAN, Fertigation, Foliar fertilizers, Water soluble fertilizers

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Stamicarbon goes smart

Summary

Stamicarbon is a leading global provider of urea technology. The company has strengthened its commitment to sustainability by aligning its technology development strategy with the long-term goals of the United Nations. A new partnership on smart fertilizers is one outcome of this new strategy, as Harold van der Zande, Stamicarbon's business development manager, explains.

Abstract

Strategic commitment to sustainablility Stamicarbon, the innovation and license company of Italian Maire Tecnimont Group, has always taken corporate social responsibility seriously. Recently, the company renewed its commitment to sustainability and innovation by closely aligning its technology development strategy with the long-term goals of the United Nations. Keywords: Smart fertilizers, Stamicarbon, Pursell Agri-Tech, Sustainability, Innovation, Technology, Licensing, R&D, Controlled release fertilizers, CRFs, Urea, Controlled release urea, CRU, Polymer coated urea, PCU, Coating plant, Controlled-Release Fertilizer Design

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Conserving nitrogen

Summary

The Nitrogen Conservation Input System (NCIS) is the latest product innovation from pioneering Florida-based company Eco Agro. The System allows enhanced efficiency fertilizer (EEF) technology to be directly incorporated into urea production. This has a number of merits, as our US correspondent Mark Evans explains.

Abstract

Eco Agro has made rapid advances since it was founded in 2013. By providing new and highly-innovative plant nutrient technologies, the company has already made great strides towards its goal of helping farmers become more productive, while at the same time protecting the environment. Keywords: Product technology, Nitrogen Conservation Input System, NCIS, Nitrogen loss, Nitrogen losses, Urea, Production, Manufacturing, Eco Agro, Enhanced efficiency fertilizers, EEFs, Polymers, PENXCEL, Urease, NBPT, DCD, M-PAP

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IFA Global Technical Symposium

Summary

More than 170 delegates gathered at the Intercontinental Madrid, Spain, 9-12 April, for the 2018 IFA Global Technical Symposium.

Abstract

Javier Goni Del Cacho, the CEO of Fertiberia and Fertilizers Europe’s President, launched the event by giving delegates a very warm welcome to Spain. This was followed by some opening remarks by Rakesh Kapur, president of the International Fertilizer Association (IFA) and CEO of the Indian Farmers Fertilizer Cooperative (IFFCO). Keywords: Conference report, IFA Global Technical Symposium, Madrid, Fertiberia, Fertilizers Europe, IFDC, APC, IFA, IFA2030, International Fertilizer Association, World Bank, IFC, WBCSD, OCP, EcoPhos, IFS, NKF, Geoalcali, Shell, Stamicarbon, thyssenkrupp, Urea, Sulphur, CRFs, Controlled release fertilizers, Controlled release urea, CRU, Precision blending, Precision agriculture, Ammonia, Production, Technology, Phosphate, Potash, Nitrogen, Sustainability, Cement, Phosphogypsum, BAT, Best available technology, Nutrient recovery

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Next generation sulphuric acid catalyst technology

Summary

New catalysts from suppliers such as Topsoe and BASF offer distinct environmental and performance advantages. We look at how catalyst innovations are helping sulphuric acid manufacturers expand their production rates, and reduce emission levels to meet increasingly stringent legislative limits.

Abstract

Sulphuric acid producers are searching for ways to improve their operational efficiency while reducing emissions levels, driven by the demands of downstream customers and environmental regulators. Upgrading to new catalysts can help sulphuric acid plant operators meet both these goals – as they offer improved production performance and the ability to meet exacting emissions standards. We report on recent catalyst innovations from market-leading suppliers Topsoe and BASF. Keywords: Sulphuric acid technology, BASF, Topsoe, Haldor Topsoe, DOMO Caproleuna, Catalysts, Catalysis, Conversion, Activity, Sieving losses, Shape, Quattro, LEAP5, Sulphuric acid, Production, Emissions, Operators

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Profitable sulphuric acid production

Summary

Improving sulphuric acid plant profitability remains the Holy Grail for operators. Jason Hartman of DuPont Clean Technologies explains how MAX3™, a holistic solution for plant design and operation from MECS®, can optimise emissions, energy recovery and operating costs.

Abstract

Sulphuric acid plant operators have consistently sought to minimise capital costs and maximise profitability. Prior to the 1980s, many plants operated without advanced heat recovery systems. Since then, improvements in plant technology and design have delivered improved operational efficiency – typically by including advanced waste heat recovery systems such as MECS® HRS™. Keywords: Sulphuric acid technology, MECS, DuPont Clean Technologies, MAX3, HRS, SolvR, Energy recovery, Heat recovery, Operating costs, Profits, Profitability, SO2, Emissions, Absorption, Capital cost

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Phosphates 2018

Summary

More than 530 delegates from 53 countries gathered at the Movenpick Hotel Mansour Eddahbi, Marrakech, Morocco, 12-14 March for CRU's Phosphates 2018 conference.

Abstract

We report on the main plenary, trade dynamics and other selected presentations at CRU’s 11th Phosphates International Conference and Exhibition held in Marrakech in March. Keywords: Conference report, Phosphates 2018, CRU, Morocco, China, Brazil, Turkey, Salitre project, OCP, Yara, Wengfu, Rabobank, Rothamsted, Toros Agri, JBI Equity, Hannam & Partners, AFAP, Prayon, Supply, Demand, Production, Trade, Investment, Technology, Capital markets, Market outlook, Phosphates, Phosphate rock, Finished phosphates, NPKs, DAP, Diammonium phosphate, Phosphate fertilizers, Compound fertilizers, Water soluble fertilizers, Elemental phosphorus, P4, Ammonia, Sulphur

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Mosaic changes trains at New Wales

Summary

The Mosaic Company recently converted a dual-train diammonium phosphate (DAP) plant at its New Wales site to the production of MicroEssentials and granular monoammonium phosphate (GMAP). This massive undertaking was Mosaic's largest phosphates project to date.

Abstract

In 2016, The Mosaic Company and its engineering partner Hatch successfully completed the largest granulation plant expansion in the United States in 30 years. This $200 million capital project provides Mosaic with the additional production capacity it needs to meet fast-growing demand for MicroEssentials, its market-leading premium phosphate product. Keywords: MicroEssentials conversion project, Mosaic, Hatch, DAP2, Diammonium phosphate, DAP, MicroEssentials, MAP, GMAP, Monoammonium phosphate, New Wales, Redfield, Brownfield, Expansion, Investment, Revamp, Granulation plant, United States, US, Florida, Phosphates, Production plant

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Understanding and avoiding fertilizer whitening

Summary

The undesirable whitening of finished phosphates has been an issue for as long as these fertilizers have been manufactured, although inquiries about the problem appear to be on the rise. Leon Willis, global process consulting director at ArrMaz, explains the root causes of fertilizer whitening, and how it can best be prevented or mitigated.

Abstract

In simple terms, whitening occurs when salts dissolve and recrystallize on the surface of fertilizer granules. The underlying salt deposition process is, however, fairly complex and not always easy to understand. In this article, the root causes of whitening are explained. A number of practical mitigation measures are also provided. Keywords: Fertilizer whitening, ArrMaz, Moisture, Humidity, Mitigation, Prevention, Storage, Handling, Production, Transport, Coating agents, Phosphate, Finished phosphates, Phosphate rock, Impurities, Diammonium phosphate, DAP, Monoammonium phosphate, MAP

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Pierre Becker Memorial Award

Summary

Mohamed Takhim, the CEO of EcoPhos, received the 2018 Pierre Becker Memorial Award on 10 April. His career was celebrated during the presentation ceremony at the International Fertilizer Association's Global Technical Symposium in Madrid.

Abstract

In recognition of your outstanding contribution to the understanding, exploitation and application of phosphate resources, the directors and staff of Fertilizer International magazine honour Mohamed Takhim. Keywords: Pierre Becker Memorial Award, 2018, Pierre Becker, Mohamed Takhim, EcoPhos, Madrid, IFA, IFA Global Technical Symposium, Award ceremony

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K+S: ambitious growth strategy

Summary

K+S Group recently unveiled Shaping 2030, an ambitious new long-term growth strategy, one designed to ensure the company's continuing success well into the next decade. The Group's CEO Dr Burkhard Lohr explains how Shaping 2030 will deliver excellent growth prospects for K+S, building on its very strong existing business position.

Abstract

How did Shaping 2030 come about? We had reached an important milestone with the opening of the Bethune mine in Canada. It was the right time to develop a clear picture of how K+S is to be structured in 2030. Keywords: Company interview, Corporate strategy, Shaping 2030, Growth, Sustainability, Debt, Earnings, EBITDA, K+S

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Advances in potash technology

Summary

We report on the latest developments in potash mining and processing technology from Andritz, Ebner, GHH Fahrzeuge, Köppern and Veolia.

Abstract

Load haul dumper (LHD) innovation Load haul dumpers (LHDs) are widely used in the haulage of potash ore in underground mines. Germany’s GHH Fahrzeuge has been manufacturing LHDs for the mining industry since 1964. Its potash industry clients include K+S and Cleveland Potash. Keywords: Potash technology, Innovation, Potash, MOP, Mining, Processing, Crystallisation, Crystallisers, Crystallization, Crystallizers, Evaporation, Evaporators, Liquid/solid separation, Liquid-solid separation, Pusher centrifuge, Vacuum disc filter, Dewatering, Thickening, Thickeners, Compaction, Crushing, Conditioning, Roller press, Solution mining, Load haul dumpers, LHDs, Koppern, Veolia, Ebner, Andritz, GHH Fahrzeuge, K+S, Belaruskali

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