Röhren- und Pumpenwerk BAUER > Tes­ti­mo­ni­als > Bauer Pivot oper­at­ed with solar electricity
Chaco in Paraguay

The sun brings the rain 

As flex­i­ble and cre­ative as the Bauer Group itself: such are the com­pa­nies that work with Bauer machines. In Paraguay, in the heart of the hottest region in South America, a Bauer pivot is oper­at­ed with solar electricity.

The inge­nious company Agroin­vest­ment SA moved two years ago from eastern Paraguay to the Paraguayan Gran Chaco in the west (known as the Chaco for short). This 5,070 hectare region lies near the Argen­tin­ian and Boli­vian borders, and 45 percent of the area is under natural con­ser­va­tion. The Chaco is home to the hottest loca­tion in South America, and fre­quent droughts occur here, espe­cial­ly during the winter half of the year.

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Sesame, chia, vegetables

Energy from the sun

This is a major chal­lenge for the Braun and Martens fam­i­lies who founded the company in 2010. With four per­ma­nent employ­ees and up to 20 sea­son­al workers, the farm pre­vi­ous­ly cul­ti­vat­ed exclu­sive­ly sesame and chia, but in the year 2020, Agroin­vest­ment began tests with pota­toes, pump­kins, lucerne (alfalfa), anise and fennel with the help of two Bauer pivots. Rain is irreg­u­lar, and pre­cip­i­ta­tion is increas­ing­ly insuf­fi­cient for sowing without a pivot (sowing of the autumn/winter harvest begins in March). However, sowing for the summer harvest should ideally take place already in October (two har­vests are pos­si­ble due to the cli­mat­ic conditions).

Bauer Pivot Paraguay Gesellschafter
Excel­lence in quality

Pivots in the hot zone

“We decided on the Bauer pivots because these irri­ga­tion machines as well as the company’s cus­tomer service enjoy very good rep­u­ta­tions for quality,” explains Viktor Martens from Agroin­vest­ment. In the years to come, up to twelve more pivots are to be installed. With the solar-powered pivot, Agroin­vest­ment is uti­liz­ing the one resource that makes irri­ga­tion essen­tial here while also making it pos­si­ble in the first place in a region lacking a com­pre­hen­sive power grid: the sun, which sup­plies power beyond measure! In the test run, the pivot was driven by a sub­mersible motor pump. This 100 HP pump was powered by a 150 kW solar system.

In prin­ci­ple, the system func­tions very well, explains Viktor Martens. However, a cloudy sky can reduce the per­for­mance, and the pump does not always achieve the same level of pres­sure. This led to the intro­duc­tion of a new concept. A pulse output water meter is installed on the central tower of the pivot, and the pulses (and thereby the water quan­ti­ty) are con­vert­ed to a speed in order to guar­an­tee even irri­ga­tion. In other words: when less water is flowing, the pivot moves more slowly; with more water, the speed increas­es – a bril­liant solu­tion by Agroinvestment.