Operational Tillage Information System (OpTIS)

CTIC has partnered with Applied GeoSolutions on the development of the Operational Tillage Informational System (OpTIS), an automated system to map tillage and winter cover crop practices using satellite data. While OpTIS calculations are performed at the farm-field scale using publicly available data, the privacy of individual producers is fully protected by reporting only spatially-aggregated results at regional and watershed scales. OpTIS data are currently available only for Indiana counties, and only for the cropping years 2005 through 2014. OpTIS data for the entire US Corn Belt for the years 2005 through 2018 are scheduled to be available from CTIC beginning in April 2019.
 
Tillage data for cropping years earlier than 2005 are available through the CRM Survey.
 

The OpTIS reports tillage practices using the following categories:

  • Total Planted Area - Total area planted as corn within the spatial unit (HUC or county) according to the previous year’s Cropland Data Layer map.
  • No-Till - Number/Percentage of all corn planted within the spatial unit that were in the category of no-till (residue cover > 30%).
  • Reduced-Till - Number/Percentage of corn planted within the spatial unit that were in the category of reduced till (residue cover > 15% and <= 30%).
  • Conventional Tillage - Number/Percentage of corn planted within the spatial unit that were conventionally tilled (residue cover <= 15%).
  • Fall Tillage - Number/Percentage of corn planted in the spatial unit that were tilled (either conventionally or reduced) in the fall of the preceding year.
  • Cover Crop Tillage - Number/Percentage of corn planted in the spatial unit that were in cover crop over the winter.
Corn
Small Grains
Soybeans
Specialty Crops