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Early Designs Laid the Foundation for Innovation

When Arthur and Bernard Zimmerer designed and built the first Zimmatic center pivot, they laid the foundation for what would become fifty years of innovation in the irrigation industry. 

“Launching the first center pivot was just the beginning,” said Jason Parker, director of Sales at Lindsay Corporation. “In the years that followed, our engineers designed and patented several innovations to help growers irrigate more efficiently and bring more acres into production.”

Two of the earliest and most important advancements were rolled out in the 1970s – the external collector ring and the Uni-Knuckle joint. The innovative external collector ring ensures continuous electrical power for each tower drive while reducing pressure losses. The Uni-Knuckle joint is a span connector that provides Zimmatic systems with the flexibility to handle slopes of up to 30 percent with little or no structural stress. Because it could handle rolling terrain, the pivot became known as ‘the hill climber’.

“These two innovations were critical for the advancement of center pivot irrigation,” Parker said. “Now, fifty years later, both design features are sill incorporated into every Zimmatic system.” 

During the 1970s, Zimmatic would also launch the first Zimmatic corner system, the mobile pivot and the lateral system – all designed to help growers maximize field coverage and increase yields. 

“The mobile pivot provided growers with an economical way to irrigate multiple fields with one system, and our corner unit extended pivot coverage by reaching into the corners of the field,” Parker said. “Helping growers make the most of every acre they farm was a priority early on – and it continues to be our priority today.”

Check out our first blog in this series: