In the middle of the cane field, the centre pivot irrigator circulates, ever so slowly. Behind the mist of water being dumped on the crop is a highly specialised Yanmar Centre Pivot Generator (CPG) package, driving the rig through its arc. Mackay sugar cane farmer Steve Young has this unit in the middle of his ‘little paddock’, a mere 50 hectare plot within his farm which totals 250 hectares under crop.
The Valley irrigator is 364 m long and delivers 25 litres of water per second. Typically it takes 4 days to dump the equivalent of 25mm of rain to the 40 hectares of sugar cane growing under the arc of the irrigator. While a pump delivers water to the irrigator, the Yanmar purpose built CPG package comprising Yanmar 3TNV88 diesel engine with 20kVA 3 phase alternator, delivers the electrical power.
The irrigator itself runs six, 3 phase electrical motors. “I’ve had the Yanmar centre pivot power pack for more than three years,” said Steve Young. “In that time it has logged over 2000 hours and I’ve never had a problem of any description.”
Steve Young purchased the Yanmar 3TNV88 engine with the 20 kVA 3 phase alternator attached as an off-the-shelf purpose designed Power Equipment package, the CPG4388E.
Power Equipment is the authorised Yanmar distributor in Australia These CPG generators are purpose built to match the engine to the constant running load of the irrigator motors, and the alternator to the starting capacity of the irrigator motors. The CPG units can be matched to single or three phase irrigators with 3 to 9 spans, with or without booster pumps.
A Power Equipment “Engine Protection System” was also supplied in the CPG kit providing essential engine safeguards for automatic shutdown in the event of overheating, loss of oil pressure and features an external emergency stop button for added safety.
The entire CPG package was mounted to a dedicated trailer and enclosed in the checkerplate sides, making the power pack totally portable. Included in the self contained mobile system is an onboard fuel tank with 110 litre capacity. The exhaust vents out one end of the trailer canopy, while the fuel filler is easily accessed at the other end. With wide entry doors fitted both sides, accessing the Yanmar 3TNV88 and the switching gear is easy. The Yanmar 3TNV88 model diesel engine produces 36.3 mhp at 3000 rpm.
It is a compact, state of the art, three cylinder engine noted for its quiet operation and low fuel consumption. Being a water cooled engine greatly assists in keeping the noise levels low.
The Yanmar 3TNV88 has a service interval of 500 hours, when the filters are replaced and oil changed. “The idea behind mounting this package to a trailer is a vote for versatility,” said Steve Young. “This unit can be towed around the farm and used where needed and most importantly it can be plugged into our home power supply when we have a power outage.” “The Yanmar 3TNV88 has been brilliant. It is very economical on fuel, about 0.88 of a litre per hour. And there have been absolutely no problems at all.”