Water Optimizer Tool

Water Optimizer Tool Logo

A Decision Support Tool For Producers With Limited Water

Developed by Derrel Martin, Ray Supalla, Brian McMullen, and Scott Nedved,
Departments of Biological Systems Engineering and Agricultural Economics

The Water Optimizer tool evaluates single fields for several crop options. Irrigated crops include: corn, soybeans, sorghum, wheat, alfalfa, edible beans, sunflowers, and sugar beets. Dryland crops include: corn, soybeans, sorghum, sunflowers, alfalfa and wheat in continuous, summer fallow and eco-fallow rotations.

The tool is a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet that allows users to input information on soil type, irrigation system options, production costs, and more. Irrigation options include center pivot or gravity irrigation systems, well or canal delivery, and systems powered by electricity, diesel or natural gas. After entering this basic information, producers enter their production costs, irrigation costs, crop prices, crop type and available water. After these parameters have been set, the program calculates what crops will be most profitable with the given costs and available water.

The Water Optimizer program and instruction manual are available via download (no charge) from the AgEcon pages or by ordering the Water Optimizer CD/DVD set for $7.00. The CD/DVD set contains material not available for download: background information, applications, examples and research results for the Water Optimizer program.

Limitation of Liability

The University of Nebraska and Nebraska Cooperative Extension shall have no liability of responsibility to the user or any other person or entity with respect to any liability, loss, or damage caused or alleged to be caused, directly or indirectly, by this computer program. All computer programs distributed by the University of Nebraska are on an "as is" basis without warranty.

NOTE: The Water Optimizer tool was originally developed in response to farmers facing water restrictions due to several years of drought across the state.


For questions regarding model use and applications call:
   Chuck Burr - Extension Educator, WCREC, Ph: (308) 696-6783
   Email: chuck.burr@unl.edu

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