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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 15 No. 2, p. 152-157
    Received: June 24, 1985

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Field Chambers for Assessing Crop Loss from Air Pollutants1

  1. R. C. Musselman,
  2. P. M. Mc Cool,
  3. R. J. Oshima and
  4. R. R. Teso2



A new field fumigation facility has been developed for determining effects of air pollutants on crops. The permanent facility consists of closed-top, octagonal chambers 2.1 m tall by 2.5 m across. Each chamber is supplied with air via underground ducting from two centralized blowers, one charcoal-filtered and the other nonfiltered. Individual chambers can be adjusted to 100% filtered air for fumigation with specific levels of pollutants, or a pollutant gradient can be generated by combining filtered and ambient air. Air exchange rates through the chambers are also adjustable. Each chamber is constructed of several flat aluminum-frame panels covered with Teflon film which has remained clear and durable after three years of continuous service. Panels are easily removed for repair if necessary. Teflon film walls minimize environmental differences between chamber and ambient air. Chamber temperatures closely track ambient, but are higher than ambient at midday. Temperatures remain uniform at different locations within each chamber. Light intensity within chambers averages 11% less than ambient. Pollutant levels set within each chamber remain relatively stable in both time and space. Native soil under each chamber has been replaced with a standard greenhouse soil mix which is irrigated with a drip system. The fumigation facility is comparable in construction costs to open-top fumigation chamber systems, and is especially useful for experiments requiring precise control of pollutant levels.

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