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Factors to consider in choosing an appropriate center pivot design are covered here. Irrigators investing in a center pivot irrigation system need to consider this important question: How much supplemental water is required by the crop? Irrigation system capacity needed to meet crop requirements is defined in units of gallons per minute (GPM) or gallons per minute per acre (GPM/AC). If the system capacity is too low, crop stress occurs during some portion of the growing season. If the capacity is too high, surface runoff may result, or capital investment for the pumping plant and center pivot may be greater than necessary.