SES Water is creating an intelligent water distribution network by working with Royal HaskoningDHV, Vodafone and Technolog to implement ground-breaking technology to cut leakage by 15% over the next five years and pave the way for more than halving it by 2045.
Their vision is to create a self-learning network that recognises and highlights issues in real-time so action can be taken to ensure customers continue to receive a sufficient supply of safe, high quality drinking water.
The newly implemented systems use a fourth generation (4G) solution that supports two-way communication between devices within the network which is supported by a cellular Internet of Things (IoT) protocol which is optimised to provide efficient communication, long battery life and lower costs.
Vodafone is providing the platform to enable transmission of data quickly and frequently from sensors and meters deployed in the pipe network.
Vodafone’s NB-IoT platform
Tim Davy, IoT Business Development Manager at Vodafone, said: “Vodafone’s NB-IoT platform will allow SES Water to transmit valuable data about water usage in a low cost, reliable way and they will be one of the first utility companies to trial such technology on this scale. It’s still early days but we are already successfully transmitting consistent communications from sensors and meters in the ground back to their head office in Redhill. We are hopeful this early success will allow us to expand this work across their wider network.”
Technolog’s network sensors
Technolog – supplier of network sensors – is providing the latest version of their Cello 4S datalogger, which utilises the NarrowBand-Internet of Things (NBIoT) network. The sensors securely and accurately measure flow, pressure, water temperature and support the expansion into other water quality monitoring when required, all in real-time.
Luke Thornton, Business Development Director at Technolog commented: “There has been a lot of talk over the years with regards to intelligent and smart water networks so it’s absolutely fantastic that SES Water, an industry-leading water company, is embracing this collaborative approach and making it a reality. This innovative methodology will significantly assist in delivering their demanding AMP7 targets and this pioneering approach makes them the first UK water company to move from trial status to business as usual. We look forward to continued collaborative success.”
Royal HaskoningDHV is providing a network event detection solution using their AI-powered Aquasuite® technology, enabling SES Water to analyse the vast amounts of data being collected and to make near real-time operational decisions.
Tom Woolley, Business Development Director at Royal HaskoningDHV, said: “We are delighted to be awarded the project to provide a truly next generation leak detection and localisation solution using our Aquasuite® technology. SES Water is known for being highly innovative and collaborating with them will showcase the benefits that can be achieved by matching innovative sensors and communications with Artificial Intelligence and machine learning.”
Commenting on the newly formed partnerships, Daniel Woodworth, Network Strategy Manager at SES Water, said: “We already have industry-leading leakage levels so we now need to make a step change in what we do by working with specialist suppliers to meet the stretching targets we have set ourselves for further reducing leakage, burst mains and supply interruptions. This project, as well as being one of the first of its kind in the water industry, is a real collaboration in the way it’s managed and run, working in full partnership with all providers with dialogue between all parties and constant feedback of information. These partnerships will enable us to turn data into business intelligence that will directly inform our leakage and network operations. It will speed up our response time to network events, reducing the runtime and impact of leakage, bursts and supply interruptions as well as helping us to better target our asset intervention strategy for the future. All of this will lead to an intelligent network which will provide a gold service for our customers for many years to come.”
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