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Natural Turf Profiles Thomas Turf Services will Consult for AirField Systems AirDrain

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A Testimonial from Jim Thomas about the AirDrain Natural Turf System.

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Mr. Blackwood:


Thank you for your call today and congratulations on your new

projects.  I would be pleased to work with you and your customers to

help select appropriate sands and/or amendments if needed to use with

your AirField System AirDrain for natural turf. As you know, we have been pleased with it’s performance here with our 5 fields at Texas A&M since 2002. And I think we can help others have equally good experiences with it.


Concepts supported by the TAMU research study:

1   1.   Given the same root zone material and depth, the AirField profile will store about 1.2 cm (0.47 inches) more water in a 30 cm (12 inch) profile.

2.  2.  The added stored water will allow longer intervals between irrigation.  For a deep rooted turf in the heat of summer this could amount to an additional 2 days between waterings and may be longer during cooler times of the year.

3.  3.   At a depth of 3 inches below the root zone surface the AirField profile contained 3.3% by volume more water as compared to the USGA type profile.

4.  4.   The AirDrain creates a better perched water table as compared to the gravel bed used is USGA systems.  Gravel will allow some continuous water films to form and thereby increase the tension and remove additional water from the overlying root zone.  The AirDrain does not support the formation of such water films and thus forms a better perched water table.

5.  5.   No clogging of any of the tested geotextiles was observed in any of the root zone materials that met or were slightly finer than the USGA particle size recommendations. 

6.  6.   Some reduction in saturated hydraulic conductivity of the root zone material was observed due to fines migrating into large pores and partially blocking them.  Data indicated that the majority of this occurred in the upper 6 inches of the root zone profile.

7.  7.   If the AirField system is installed on a slope, vertical barriers can be installed perpendicular to the slope to help maintain more adequate moisture in the upper portions of the area.  For these to work properly, it is critical that they interrupt the continuity of the geotextile.

Please feel free to have people contact me at the following cell

phone, fax, and E-mail address.

Samples may be mailed to me at the address below.



Jim Thomas

James C. Thomas, Pres.

Thomas Turf Services, Inc.

11183 State Hwy. 30

College Station, TX 77845

Fax:  979-774-1604

Mobile:  979-575-5107