Water Quality and Leakage Monitoring
The water quality monitoring market is expected to be valued at USD 4.69 billion by 2025, growing at a CAGR of 4.54% between 2016 and 2025.
Extra revenues through cost savings – water management costs can be significantly reduced by real-time monitoring of all operations (including leaks, pressure sensors and IoT software analytics), consequently resulting in optimized asset utilization, improved operational processes, energy costs savings, minimized human intervention, lower maintenance costs and lower infrastructure costs. Water issues varying depending on the region. Eg: some regions receive more rainfall than others, meaning less need for water sprinklers, etc. However, one of the biggest costs associated with water companies is the cost of moving water, which is huge. By being able to reduce usage and thus reducing mobilization, revenues are prone to grow. With the use of an intelligent IoT network, the relevant information can be extracted and visualized, resulting in companies being able to incentivize the customer to use water at no peak times when the costs are lower.
Productivity increase: IoT allows real-time control for smarter business decisions, reduced operating costs, optimized processes and resources and service time reduction. It also expands existing business models and generates new, more profitable and sustainable ones. The use of an IoT network extends into the field through the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) solutions and remote working tools.
Increased efficiency – water management companies and associations can use real-time operational control to make smarter business decisions and reduce operating costs.
Improved operational process control and monitoring; optimized and transparent asset utilization – smart meters, sensors and connectivity significantly improve tracking of all assets, providing real-time visibility into the supply chain; they can be used for remote monitoring of drinking water, fresh water, stormwater and wastewater process control and for assets monitoring like pumps, pipeline pressure, flow, and water quality in the distribution and collection system, or for predicting when and where these assets need timely maintenance or replacement.
Optimized and transparent asset utilization – by using sensors and connectivity, water companies significantly improve tracking of all their assets, gaining real-time visibility into their supply chains.
Real-time knowledge of water usage statistics and analytics for smarter and faster decisions – IoT analytics can eliminate data irregularities related to meters errors or registration problems, theft, or can provide a real-time view on unbilled water statistics or any relevant statistic needed in the decision making process.
Minimal maintenance costs while improving safety and reliability of network operations– Plant maintenance studies claim that 30% of preventive maintenance activities are carried out too frequently, and 45% of these efforts are ineffective and may lead to asset failure caused by unnecessary works. A predictive maintenance system, which uses sensor data, can eliminate breakdowns by up to 70%, reduce downtime by up to 50%, and reduce scheduled repairs by up to 12% (acc to IBM research). Being able to easily locate all assets, to do real-time monitoring and to control and run preventive maintenance on critical pieces of infrastructure and machinery, water companies significantly reduce maintenance costs and minimize response time in the case of leakages or other waterworks events.
Water companies – we already see some innovative water companies struggling to find pragmatic solutions to traditional and emerging threats to water resources and infrastructure
Water Corporation Australia – since part of Western Australia is one of the most impacted by climate change, with yearly reductions rainfall, they have a long-term plan to secure water supplies in response to climate change, named Water Forever. The program has three pillars, which includes working with the community to reduce water use, increasing the amount of water recycled and developing new water sources.
South East Water – Aquarevo is a water-efficient residential development; the solution includes an app that enable owners to track and monitor all energy and water usage in near real time on a single interface; they’ve also designed an intelligent pressure sewer system that takes wastewater to a treatment plant on the estate, treats it to Class A standard, and returns it to homes for irrigation and toilets.
Anglian Water – Since The UK’s water industry significantly relies on an ageing water infrastructure, with the added pressure of a rising population, growing water scarcity and complex regulations. Anglian Water uses various IoT solutions for Integrated Remote Intelligence, Integrated Leakage and Pressure Management System, smart meters for both residential and commercial properties to improve customer satisfaction, ensure zero water bursts or leaks, and reduce water consumption to 80 litres per head, per day.
Smart meter providers –some of them also offer software services or E2E solutions, that include sensors, data collection, network management, and analytics solutions.
Leak detection software vendors – they provide solutions that automate detection of network events like leaks, bursts, pressure spikes, and supply interruptions.
IoT/software companies – offering a horizontal IoT business model, focusing on general smart utilities IoT solutions
Telecom operators – all focus on smart cities and smart water management solutions.
Telefónica estimates that a proper water management strategy can save cities as much as 20% of the cost. These saving alone, ease the investment required to install sensors and modify water management and supply systems.
Deutsche Telekom Nb-IoT network is already rolling across several European countries and several solutions are currently being tested in their Nb-IoT Prototyping hub in the smart water management domain
AT&T is currently working with IBM and other partners, trialing out solutions that uses sensors and sounds to detect water pressure, temperature and leaks, bringing all sources of data together for complete view of past, present and future performance; it also provides smart irrigation solutions for agriculture, using IoT sensors and data about weather, soil, shade, plant types or moisture levels
Vodafone is offering Nb-IoT solutions for smart metering, optimized for route consumption and low energy
There still are ongoing challenges within the IoT Ecosystem related to security, customer education, IoT monetisation, interoperability, etc. However, IoT already proved to have the power to revolutionise the water industry and create sustainable solutions for global water supply.
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