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WIPAC Monthly - August 2017


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Welcome to the August 2017 edition of WIPAC Monthly, the monthly magazine of the LinkedIn Group Water Industry Process Automation & Control.

In this month's edition we ask the question "Where does the Water Industry & the Smart Industry collide in an interesting opinion piece which looks at the various reports that have been published about the Water Industry recently.

In our second article this month we have a continuation of the "Focus On" pieces which look at the basics of a particular subject in the Water Industry. This month concentrated on the subject of Wastewater Flow Control.

This is all together with all of the usual news & events from the Water Industry

Published in: Engineering
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WIPAC Monthly - August 2017

  1. 1. Page 1 WIPAC MONTHLYThe Monthly Update from Water Industry Process Automation & Control Issue 8/2017 - August 2017
  2. 2. Page 2 In this Issue From the Editor.................................................................................................................... 3 Industry News..................................................................................................................... 4 - 9 Highlights of the news of the month from the global water industry centred around the successes of a few of the companies in the global market. Where does the direction of the Water industry & the Smart Industry collide................... 10-14 A huge number of reports recently have suggested directions in the future of the Water Industry. This month’s opinion piece takes the learning of these reports and see where the Water Industry and the Smart Industry can work together to deliver an industry where “Smart Water” is just another part of the industry and is the accepted norm. Focus on: Flow Control in Wastewater................................................................................ 15-19 The subject of flow, especially in the UK, will become a very important subject, at least for the next few years. In this month’s “Focus On” article we look at the types of flow control, especially that used to control the main plant flows, that are in common use and look at where they are normally applied. Workshops, Conferences & Seminars................................................................................... 20-21 The highlights of the conferences and workshops in the coming months WIPAC Monthly is a publication of the Water Industry Process Automation & Control Group. It is produced by the group manager and WIPAC Monthly Editor, Oliver Grievson. This is a free publication for the benefit of the Water Industry and please feel free to distribute to any who you may feel benefit. All enquires about WIPAC Monthly, including those who want to publish news or articles within these pages, should be directed to the publications editor, Oliver Grievson at
  3. 3. Page 3 From the Editor Standards, Skills and the Small things are some of the things that have occupied my time this month (as well as writing a couple of articles that you will see later in this edition). A few hours before writing this editorial I was speaking to a colleague about standards surrounding electro-magnetic flow meters as part of a programme of installation. There the usual discussions around up-stream and down-stream pipe lengths depending upon what interruptions there were potentially going to be and the conversation quickly lapsed into types of bends to minimise disturbance, concrete rings and what was best to keep chambers from flooding and then onwards onto ladders versus step irons and the types of man-hole cover. Both of us were very comfortable with the conversation and it showed the experience present in the conversation that we jump from elements of electrical engineering, mechanical engineering & civil engineering all in one go. This of course is the practical conversation that happens everyday but it has to happen with a base amount of knowledge of what exactly is going on and what exactly will work and won’t work. I’ve been discussions with an old colleague for a number of months now about revamping the old British Standard for Instrumentation and the challenge will be to put a standard in place that covers all of this sort of things but doesn’t conflict with other British Standards. A tricky job to do. The standards and the skills are of course closely related and it was disheartening to see an article today that there is a shortage of 221,000 engineers for the utilities industries over the next ten years and just to keep level a total of 50,000 engineers need to be trained every year. In the UK we are the busiest year in our asset management cycle and there is plenty of work but give it a couple of years and it will be case of people scratching around for what is available, or at least this has been the pattern of the past. At this point it is when engineers are lost and the situation gets worse. There are various initiatives afoot to address this imbalance but in a discipline like instrumentation or control engineering, where the number of people taking it up is pretty low to start off with the threat of only having a handful of people available to the water industry only grows. With the future of the Water Industry, at least being partly, technologically driven this should be a serious concern to all of those interested parties in the water industry as it will surely start to bite in short shrift. Onto the little things. Instrumentation quite often is about the little things; most of my time in my day job is al about looking at flow. It is a job where precision is absolutely essential a few degrees here or a millimetre there can be the difference between pass or a fail. Making sure that precise detail, making sure that all of the multiple elements tie together to make sure that the millimetres are all where they should be. I often think that people think that the precision makes me look obsessive. In fact undertaking a survey recently with a colleague she commented that “do we really have to go into such small detail,” when I was measuring a flume to the nearest half a millimeter. Of course the half millimeter made a 10% difference and when I showed my colleague the difference it made there was a sense of “Yes we do and it does make a difference.” It is the engineer that realises that the small things, the fraction of a millimeter that really does make a difference. It is the engineer now that needs to be skilled partly in process engineering, partly in electrical engineering, partly in mechanical engineering and partly in a number of different types of engineering that now exist. So where does the future lie? It lies in the standards, the skills and the small things for without it things will work but not quite right. That may seem to be a small thing but when things are just not right things stop working, things don’t last as long and although the root cause of it won’t be obvious it won’t quite be right. That is the job of the technical make the things that aren’t quite right run right. It is something small but vitally important Have a good month Oliver
  4. 4. UK water firms could face fines up to £17m for poor cyber security Organisations who fail to implement effective cyber security measures could be fined as much as £17 million or 4 per cent of global turnover, as part of plans to make Britain’s essential networks and infrastructure safe, secure and resilient against the risk of future cyber attacks. The plans are being considered as part of the consultation by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport to decide how to implement the Network and Information Systems (NIS) Directive from May 2018. Fines would be a last resort and will not apply to operators that have assessed the risks adequately, taken appropriate security measures, and engaged with competent authorities but still suffered an attack. The NIS Directive relates to loss of service rather than loss of data, which falls under the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). It will help make sure UK operators in electricity, transport, water, energy, transport, health and digital infrastructure are prepared to deal with the increasing numbers of cyber threats. It will also cover other threats affecting IT such as power failures, hardware failures and environmental hazards. Businesses in these sectors identified by as “operators of essential services” will have to take appropriate and proportionate security measures to manage risks to their network and information systems. Key digital service providers (search engines, cloud computing services and online marketplaces) will also have to comply with the security and incident notification requirements established under the Directive. Introducing the consultation, Matt Hancock MP Minister of State for Digital commented: “Recent events such as the WannaCry ransomware attack, the 2016 attacks on US water utilities, and the 2015 attack on Ukraine’s electricity network clearly highlight the impact that can result from adversely affected network and information systems. “There is a need to therefore improve the security of network and information systems across the UK, with a particular focus on essential services (energy, health, transport, water, and digital infrastructure) which if disrupted, could potentially cause significant damage to the UK economy, society and individuals’ welfare.” Under the requirements of the Directive the UK must identify the “operators of essential services” who must comply with the Directive. In the water sector, the Government is proposing that the national threshold for providers of drinking water supply and distribution and the supply of potable water to households should apply to operators with sites serving 350,000 or more people. The proposed thresholds for a range of sectors are generally set at such a level as to capture only the most important operators, rather than the whole sector. The NIS Directive, once implemented, will form an important part of the Government’s five-year £1.9 billion National Cyber Security Strategy. It will compel essential service operators to make sure they are taking the necessary action to protect their IT systems. The Government is proposing a number of security measures in line with existing cyber security standards which operators will be required to put in place, including: • to develop a strategy and policies to understand and manage their risk; • to implement security measures to prevent attacks or system failures, including measures to detect attacks; • to develop security monitoring; • to raise staff awareness and training; • to report incidents as soon as they happen; • to have systems in place to ensure that they can recover quickly after any event, with the capability to respond and restore systems. • In the Government’s view any operator which takes cyber security seriously should already have such measures in place. National Cyber Security Centre NCSC CEO Ciaran Martin said: “We welcome this consultation and agree that many organisations need to do more to increase their cyber security. “The NCSC is committed to making the UK the safest place in the world to live and do business online, but we can’t do this alone. “Everyone has a part to play and that’s why since our launch we have been offering organisations expert advice on our website and the Government’s Cyber Essentials Scheme.” The consultation proposes similar penalties for flaws in network and information systems as those coming for data protection with the General Data Protec- tion Regulation, due to be in force by May 2018. Failure to implement effective security could see penalties as large £17 million or 4 per cent of global turnover. Page 4 Industry News
  5. 5. Future Water Association launches water sector cyber security survey Leading business support organisation Future Water Association, in partnership with Waterbriefing, is launching a major survey on the growing challenges surrounding cyber security in the water sector. Today the water sector is generating ever-increasing amounts of data from assets, information centres, AI systems and customer information. The data is essential for the delivery of resilience and optimal asset performance and critical to the effective functioning of the sector. However, while the benefits are huge, one of the key threats now facing the sector is the growing risk of cyber-attacks. Cyber security is an issue for water companies and suppliers from the major Tier 1 companies down to Tier 2, 3, 4 and beyond. According to the Government’s recent UK Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2017, only 33% of businesses have formal policies in place and only 20% of those surveyed, provide staff with cyber security training. While many companies have carried out health checks, risk assessments or audits to identify cyber security risks, less than half have a formal cyber security incident management process in place. Across the water sector the picture is varied but will be changing rapidly, as regulators require much more stringent reporting linked to cyber security issues and the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) become mandatory in the UK from May 2018. The Future Water Association survey is supported by Water UK, the organisation which represents all the UK water companies. Paul Horton, Chief Executive of Future Water commented: “The survey is a real opportunity for firms at all points in the supply chain – from SMEs to large corporates, to water utilities – to express their views on what is set to be a major challenge for the water sector.” “We’re trying to get a more accurate picture of the current level of awareness in the sector and help companies prepare for the future, where GDPR becomes mandatory and the Government implements the Network and Information Systems (NIS) Directive. The need to act is now.” “It’s also vital that all companies in the sector understand their responsibilities ahead of the new Regulations coming in next year. Wherever they are in the supply chain either in the capacity as a supplier, customer or both –they will be required to demonstrate their Cyber Security preparedness when bidding for work.” The initial results of the survey will be formally presented at a Future Water Association cyber security workshop on 27th September. Click here to access the Future Water Association Cyber Security Survey Royal Eijkelkamp introduces versatile oxygen demand spectrometer for waste water Sensor technology supplier Royal Eijkelkamp launched a versatile spectral analyser to measure biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), chemical oxygen demand (COD) and total organic carbon (TOC) at a waste water treatment plant. The in situ analyser operates within the wavelength range 200 to 710 nm (UV/Vis) and is able determine various parameters in waste water simultaneously. Entire wavelength The result of a single measurement is an absorption spectrum over the entire wavelength range. The Eijkelkamp spectrometer features an adjustable measuring path length, by which no water becomes too dirty for measurement. In contrast to electrochemical sensors and multi-parameter measurements, a spectrometer is a very versatile instrument. High temperature range The measuring head of the Eijkelkamp spectrometer is made of V4A stainless steel and includes only the optics and the compressed air cleaning system. The control and evaluation electronics are installed in the associated sensor module. As a result, the spectrometer can be used in a high temperature range (up to 110°C). Real time Parameters in waste water treatment plants that are observed continuously and in real time, make it possible to notice changes in concentrations and to react at once. Furthermore, the integrated automatic compressed air cleaning of the measuring path makes sure that the device can reach a very long operating lifetime and service intervals. The spectrometer is suited for monitoring in different areas of treatment plants. The measuring head can be installed directly into the flow or basins without the need for ultrafiltration. Page 5
  6. 6. New 3 year contract extends Unitywater and TaKaDu long-term partnership Israeli-headquartered firm TaKaDu and Australian water utility Unitywater have signed a new three-year contract to continue optimising Unitywater’s network efficiency, improve customer service, and reduce water loss. Based in South-East Queensland, the water and sewerage service provider has prevented billions of litres of water loss and achieved millions of dollars in savings by implementing TaKaDu’s system across 90% of its network. Since the companies started working together in 2013, TaKaDu’s event management solution has played a pivotal role in Unitywater’s operations and in its digitisation. Benefits include improved customer service, faster response rates, shortened repair cycles, reduced water loss (non-revenue water) and early leak detection. This week, the two organisations signed a contract for a further three years. Unitywater Acting CEO Rob Dowling said that TaKaDu had been instrumental in helping the organisation manage its water network smartly and reduce its water loss and associated costs. “We are committed to reducing the cost to serve our customers and TaKaDu’s system continues to help us do that,” he said. “TaKaDu has helped us improve our operational efficiency and customer service. Providing in-depth visibility, we can detect and resolve leaks early, avoid major water outages and reduce asset failure rates, for example, identifying pump faults that cause bursts before they happen. “We are pleased to continue our long-term relationship with TaKaDu and look forward to seeing further operational efficiencies.” TaKaDu’s proven IoT solution for the water industry is based on big data analytics and sophisticated algorithms. The cloud-based SaaS platform brings together huge amounts of information in an easy-to-use, flexible and scalable solution. TaKaDu’s Founder and CEO, Amir Peleg, said: “This contract renewal offers an important validation of our technology by one of the industry’s leaders in innovation and technology. With a dedicated team overseeing network events, collaboration across departments and improved business processes and procedures, Unitywater offers an excellent example of the benefits of combining people, processes and technology for water efficiency. We look forward to continuing our collaboration going forward.” The two organisations are now working together to develop new functionalities regarding water quality data analytics, pumps and energy-related data. Last year, Unitywater and TaKaDu also expanded their relationship by offering TaKaDu’s IoT cloud-based solution to other water utilities across Queensland. Sensus Wins Best Smart Utility Solution Award For Fourth Consecutive Year Municipal leaders again recognize Sensus AMI solution for smart city innovation For the fourth consecutive year, the Sensus Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) solution has been honoured by municipal utility executives as the “Best Smart Utility Solution” during the Municipal Smart Grid Summit (MSGS). The Sensus AMI solution is comprised of smart metering technology and the FlexNet® communication system, a two-way network that securely transmits and receives data over licensed spectrum. The FlexNet system allows utilities across water, electricity, gas and lighting to collect, deliver, manage and analyze data while scaling to meet future communication needs. “As the shift to smart cities continues, municipalities seek innovative technology solutions that transform their communities,” said David Stair, senior director of North America energy sales at Sensus. “Our AMI solution plays an essential role in enabling this transformation, delivering advanced connectivity and functionality that helps utilities improve the lives of the customers they serve.” The seventh annual MSGS focused on executives at public power utilities seeking stronger, smarter, more secure and resilient energy infrastructure. The summit featured smart grid technology companies presenting to more than 100 municipal utility executives from across North America. Page 6
  7. 7. Report warns of need for more accurate data to assess growing risks to UK coastal communities A new report from the Government Office for Science is warning that the information needed to develop effective policies to ensure the future prosperity, sustainability and health of coastal communities is either inadequate or not available. According to the report Future of the Sea: Health and Wellbeing of Coastal Communities, policy development depends on having accurate information upon which to make judgements about the extent to which particular risks should be addressed. Although the report states that the views expressed do not “represent policy of any government or organisation” , the review was commissioned as part of the UK government’s Foresight Future of the Sea project. The report says that communities along the coast are on the front line in facing climate change and marine pollution impacts. Sea-level rise and extreme weather events, driven by climate change and ecosystem damage, are exposing coastal communities to the growing risk of flooding events now and in the future. More than 11 million Britons live in coastal areas - approximately 17 per cent of the UK population. Determining how each coastal community can become resilient in the face of socio-demographic change and the increasing number of extreme events and environmental threats is now a key challenge, the report says. By 2080 climate change is predicted to have ‘severe’ damaging impacts, to the degree that it will pose a significant threat to the health and wellbeing of UK and global coastal communities due to: • Sea-level rise of one metre (and potentially up to two metres) • Increased frequency of winter storms • Increased coastal flooding • Increased temperatures • Higher levels of winter precipitation, particularly along the northern and western coastlines • Increased rates of coastal erosion and sediment reworking (resulting in reconfiguration, relocation and decline of coastal sedimentary processes). The most vulnerable coastal communities in the UK are likely to be in south Wales, north-west Scotland, Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, East Anglia and the Thames Estuary, the report says. This is due both to the physical threats, but also through damage to local economies, industry and infrastructure, and the limited capacity of the communities most at risk to respond. As well as posing a direct threat to health (e.g. though extreme acute events), the rise in sea levels and flooding and storm surges associated with climate change are threatening built infrastructure, including ports, roads and rail lines. The report has flagged up the 2017 Committee on Climate Change risk assessment which identifies flooding and coastal change as one of the six immediate priority areas for climate change action. “The Committee noted that there are likely to be considerable long-term health and wellbeing impacts of climate change-related flood events, but that these are currently little understood and research is needed to assess and mitigate risks.” the report says. Environmental state of UK coastal habitats has declined, degrading ecosystem service provision The review also draws attention to the loss of ‘natural’ sea defences along the UK coastline - overall, the environmental state of coastal habitats has declined since 1945, degrading ecosystem service provision. “The loss of intertidal habitats and coastal features (natural coastal or marine ecosystems, and ‘green/blue infrastructure’), due to climate change, development and erosion, removes the natural ‘buffering’ of wave energy, thereby threatening the UK’s coastal defences.” the report warns. “Use of marine planning and ‘natural capital’ methodologies could provide a basis for action Commenting on the policy implications presented by growing risks, the report says that the health and wellbeing of the UK’s highly diverse coastal communities face serious threats now and in the coming decades. Key factors include the mixture of climate change and sea-level rise, pollution and continuing development pressures, and socio-demographic change of human populations. However, the report suggests there is, however, much that can be done through policy and other interventions. In particular the development of inter-sectoral policies are key to addressing the challenge and that increasing the use of marine planning and ‘natural capital’ methodologies could provide a basis for action. Page 7
  8. 8. Pump blockage solution delivers 70% blockage reduction Anglian Water has been trialling an innovative pump blockage detection device at over 200 of its sites - early results have shown a 70 per cent reduction in blockages, and in many instances engineers no longer have to visit troublesome sites. Blockages of submersible pumps caused by grease and solids are a major problem in pumping wastewater. In the worst-case scenario, this can result in flooded wells, unwanted spillages and eventually, premature motor failures. Unscheduled work to manually clear the blockages is then required, which entails pump lifting, involving considerable time and expense, not to mention the health and safety aspects. AW Siemens simcode 1Working in association with the Water Innovation Network, the water company is using Siemens’ Simocode motor management system as a pump blockage detection device to extend efficiencies Anglian Water ran an initial trial at a site in Corby which had been experiencing regular pump blockage issues. Upon first use with Simocode the operator was able to identify that the pump was running at a higher than anticipated current, and instigated a reversal operation. The current then reduced significantly, suggesting evidence of freeing a previous blockage. The system was configured to look for set points indicating higher than normal currents, whereby Simocode would automatically instigate a pump reversal. In the six months since the first trial started, Anglian Water has experienced a considerable reduction in blockages, along with lower running costs. The company is now confident that pump blockages can be significantly reduced - Anglian Water asset optimisation engineer Lorenzo Pompa commented: “Previously we spent up to £15 million a year sorting out around 34,000 blockages at a cost of around £500 per blockage. Blockages have a negative impact on the environment and our customers, and tie up our technicians, who we’d rather were working on enhancing processes at our water recycling centres and pumping stations. So, any steps we can take to avoid blockages provide an all-round benefit for us.” Benefits have also included a dramatic reduction in downtime, significant TOTEX benefits, a scalable solution with simple deployment and the flexibility of either a networked or standalone configuration. In addition to managing the process, if required Simocode will provide all the data associated with the pump over a secure internet connection so decisions can be taken remotely. Anglian Water now plans to introduce Simocode to other sites in due course. ISA And Siemens Form Global Partnership To Improve Awareness Of The Need For Industrial Cybersecurity The International Society of Automation (ISA) announced recently that it has formed a global partnership with Siemens—a worldwide technology leader in electrification, automation and digitalization—to improve awareness of the need for industrial cybersecurity. The partnership, forged in response to the changing industrial security landscape and growing cyber-threats to automation networks and systems, specifically focuses on broadening understanding and adoption of industrial automation security standards. Both organizations will share expertise in protecting automation environments based on ISA/IEC 62443, the world’s only consensus-based series of industrial cybersecurity standards, and appropriate security measures through co-sponsored events, webinars and additional educational resources Together, ISA and Siemens intend to raise awareness and share best practices of industrial security with owner/operators of industrial equipment. The first activity between Siemens and ISA will be two live webinar sessions, titled “Cybersecurity for Control Systems in Process Automation,” with Siemens Plant Security Services Product Solution & Security Officer (PSSO) Robert Thompson and ISA 99/IEC 62443 Committee Co-Chair Eric Cosman. “Cyber Security needs to be addressed by industrial companies as recent global ransomware attacks have demonstrated the possible impacts in the last weeks. Our customers need to adequately manage the associated cyber risk, arising from the vulnerabilities of IT technology combined with the increased connectedness in our digital age,” says Henning Rudolf, Global Head of Siemens Plant Security Services. Siemens operates several “Cyber Security Operation Centers” (CSOC) for the production of industrial facilities, with joint locations in Lisbon, Munich and Milford (Ohio) in the USA. Siemens industrial security specialists based at these sites monitor industrial facilities all around the world for cyber threats, warn companies in the event of security incidents and coordinate proactive countermeasures. These protective measures are also part of Siemens extensive Plant Security Services. Page 8
  9. 9. The vast potential of machine learning and data Recent efforts to use machine learning to predict bursts and leakage illustrate how the collaborative use of data could help make the most of artificial intelli- gence. The trick to making innovation work in big organisations is not only to get as many people involved as possible, but also to make sure that the ideas are built on realistic foundations. Innovative ideas only become game-changing products and services, if they are grounded in accurate data and real-world experience. If you set off on a course driven by partial or inaccurate data, you’re never going to solve the real problem. Likewise, an on-site engineer can often pinpoint a solution that no amount of spreadsheet analysis ever could. Things are now starting to get really interesting as the technology to interrogate complicated data becomes more intelligent. AI or machine learning now allows engineers to teach a system to learn from their human experience, and to count, or discount, variables that have, in the past, made innovation from data analysis problematic. At NWG’s recent Innovation Festival, Clancy Docwra fielded a team with our software development partners Dootrix to tackle the challenge of predicting when mains leaks would occur, working on the basis that prevention was much cheaper than cure. The team’s solution fed a machine learning platform with historical water company data and myriad external conditions, to predict likely weak points and when mains were likely to burst. The idea won the prize for innovation, but being a team of perfectionists, they knew that there were still flaws in the model, and the hurdles were nearly all because of incomplete or missing information. The data the team was working from was of ‘bursts’ not ‘leaks’, and as we know, those are very different problems. Many systems could quickly make a relatively accurate prediction based on the likely integrity of Edwardian cast iron or 21st century PVC, but how much will they cost to repair? Even more importantly, how much money would be saved if a leak was fixed before it became a burst? To make ground-breaking changes to the way utilities tackle huge challenges like leakage will require a new level of collaboration and data sharing right across the supply chain; from surveyors and planners to monitoring and emergency response teams. If utilities and their suppliers and partners could find a way to share not only operational data from the network but also as much circumstantial evidence as possible, AI would really start to come into its own. The data, experience, and expertise held by civil engineers like Clancy Docwra, can add vital new and relevant information to supplement that of our customers. We’re often on the sharp end of fixing a problem, so it’s possible that our data might just provide the missing link to help prevent the next problem from happening. The NWG Hackathon at the Innovation Festival demonstrated how a hypothesis can be quickly explored in a lean and agile manner, and how technologies like as machine learning can transform our industry. Such events are now common practice in other sectors such as travel and retail, particularly around subjects relating to customer experience. There is huge potential for the sector to take a different approach to engaging everyone across the supply chains, and it’s a great, practical example of Ofwat’s innovation and collaboration expectations for PR19. To make true innovation happen in our industry, and to drive real value for customers and shareholders alike, we need to embrace new forms of collaboration, new technologies, and new possibilities. Australia releases seabed data from MH370 search The release this month of bathymetry data by Geoscience Australia has revealed seafloor maps with a resolution 15 times higher than those previously produced using satellite data. The bathymetric survey, conducted by Dutch-based company Fugro during Phase One of the search for missing flight MH370, has provided a detailed map of the seafloor topography in the search area. Following the disappearance in March 2014 of the Malaysia Airlines flight, the southern Indian Ocean search, led by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), was acknowledged as one of the largest marine surveys ever conducted. Geoscience Australia supported the ATSB, providing specialist advice and capability and an understanding of the remote environment in which the search was conducted. Fugro deployed specialist survey vessels (Equator vessel on top photo) equipped with sidescan and multibeam sonar equipment mounted on towed and autonomous underwater vehicles, to collect high resolution sonar images of the seafloor. The 278,000 square kilometres of data collected also included additional bathymetry data from Fugro’s survey vessels as they transited to and from the remote search area. In January 2017, the governments of Malaysia, Australia and the People’s Republic of China jointly announced the suspension of the deepwater search. Following their commitment to publicly release the data acquired during the survey and search operations, the Phase One data is now available in multiple formats via the Geoscience Australia website. Paul Kennedy, Fugro’s Marine Geophysical Service Line Director, remarked on the quality of the data, “The Geoscience Australia web platform provides a superb visual comparison between the new bathymetric data and the previous satellite data. It clearly illustrates the scientific value of this unique information and accurately represents Fugro’s marine site characterisation deliverables.” The seafloor data is expected to contribute to a better understanding of the formation of the southern Indian Ocean. The unique information could provide unprecedented insights for scientific communities, benefiting research in areas such as continental margin geology; plate tectonic history; seabed processes; unique flora and fauna; and future survey expeditions. Page 9
  10. 10. Opinion: Where does the direction of the Water Industry and the Smart Industry collide? Introduction Over the past few months the Global Water Industry has seen quite a few reports into the direction of the Water Industry and in England & Wales specifically we have seen further advice to the Water Industry, as to the direction it will take in the next Asset Management Period between 2020-2025. In these various reports there are various opportunities for the water industry and the “Smart” Water industry to “collide,” for the opportunities that are available to the indus- try to be realised. The majority of this is around the use of data and its value to the industry and its customers. Looking further forward than the next seven years and the stra- tegic direction of the water industry (which all the water companies do) there are various other drivers such as how the water industry is going to collaborate in Smart City initiatives and how it will become a part of a “Smart” way of living. We are already seeing, as a global population, the installation of “Smart” Motorways, the potential of driverless cars and convoys of trucks driven by a single driver. All of these innovations are pretty much in their infancy but we are also seeing the widespread roll-out of Smart Meters for the power industry and a more focused roll-out in the Water Industry. So the question is – “where is the water industry going?” What are the opportunities? What are the drivers? How is the Water Industry going to change? Firstly we are seeing the concept of the digital water industry being examined but the danger is for that to exist we need to the data to start off with and that data needs to be accurate as without that accuracy the digital industry will fail. For the remainder of this article we will look at the various aspects of the industry using the fundamental structure of the SWAN Layers diagram Layer 1 – The physical infrastructure So what do we by the physical infrastructure and how does this relate to the “Smart Water” Industry. Some work done by Combined Services Ltd revealed that in England & Wales we have 418,000 km of water pipe (not including wastewater). This for distribution of water only and with an average level of water loss approximately at 20% (see figure 1) looking at a selection of cities across the world you have cities such as Tokyo & Lisbon where the level of water leakage is in single figures. From the physical infrastructure point of view the simplified point of view is knowing exactly where water supply pipes are and what condition they are in this takes dedicated mapping , pipe condition assessment services and pipe repair services. This is actually nothing new and is in place within the water industry at the current time. Firstly, there are tagging services that can be used on utility pipework as its goes into the ground. There have been challenges due to the cost of taking this approach and the challenge back is that any errors in digging excavations to make pipe repairs leads to the cost savings that pay for tagging services. It is an arguable point as of course it depends how much you dig and also how accurate the mapping is when pipe repairs are made but with 418,000 km of pipework in water distribution pipe alone there is a huge amount of ground to cover. An example of a pipe tagging system is shown in figure 2 where tags are used to identify pipes and their changes in direction. Secondly are the various types of asset management condition and repair services of which there are numerous types of tools that are used not only to map distribution pipes but also assess their asset condition. Technologies and services such as the WRC’s SmartBall® and Sahara® technologies are used to conduct commissioning tests on newly laid pipes, trace deeply laid pipes and look at pipe condition monitoring on different pipe materials depending upon the monitoring technique ranging from acoustics, conductivity & electro-magnetic testing to identify pipe conditions from the amount of metal that is lost to pinpoint leaks. An example of the use of the SmartBall® system has recent years been used when a water company was looking to refurbish one its reservoirs, concerns were Figure 1: Leakage in a selection of global cities Figure 2: Pipe Mapping & Tagging systems (courtesy of OXEMS) Page 10
  11. 11. raised that the increase in pressure might create leaks in one of the ageing concrete pipes it serves. The pipe, first laid in the 1970s, had a history of failures and worries about the integ- rity of rubber sealed joints and potential burst situations. In the case study the SmartBall® was running at approximately 2/3rd the speed of flow, the 6km pipeline was fully surveyed in just six hours. Three leaks were found: one at a weeping drain/scour valve; one at a closed scour connection that had not sealed properly; and a final leak at a recently completed temporary repair. Apart from the three leaks, which were duly repaired, the WRC SmartBall® survey delivered the necessary confidence that the remainder of the pipe was leak-free and ready to withstand elevated pressures from the refurbished reservoir. Furthermore, no trapped pockets of air were detected during the survey, indicating that the air valves in the pipeline appeared to be working well. This is a case study of technology that is already in existence being use to great effectiveness. When it comes to the wastewater side of the business generally the reverse situation exists insofar as water doesn’t leak but infiltrates into the pipe and a similar sort of pipe condition monitoring exists as a precursor to the use of CCTV surveying using acoustic sensing and technology such as SewerBatt™ which can give rapid assessment of pipe condition identify areas of potential infiltration. Across both water & wastewater is the need for modelling of the various distribution and collection networks. As the industry becomes “smarter” and the ability to do more with the network and of course the development of technology the details of these models both needs to be more extensive and can be so. The key being what actual details are needed to accomplish the goals that the industry has. What is clear is modelling services are becoming more and more important within the modern water industry. The quality of these models are of vital importance. Layer 2 – Instrumentation, physical control & data production Typically the second layer of the SWAN Layers diagram has been all about the instrumentation, sensing & physical control (such as control valves & switches). However in reality it can be expanded to include all sorts of data production for example on-site data logs or the production of data from a company laboratory but also from customer smart water meters. Figure 4 shows part of the structure of the layer and in this we can see that this is an area of huge potential development & opportunity in the Water Industry in the coming few years especially within the wastewater part of the industry in both the collection network and the treatment works as we look to improving the situation around the management of flow through the wastewater system. Figure 3: Sahara & Smartball pipeline mapping techniques Instrument Asset  Data Asset Structure Data Cost Data Leakage Data Consumption Data Customer Details Billing Data Flow Data Quality Data Level Data Sensor State Control Valve State Individual Asset  State Data Laboratory Data Manual Sampling  Asset State Data Production Data Pump State Data Log Book Data Job task data Asset Size Data Model Data Asset Servicing Data Survey Data Engineering  Drawings Asset Availability Online  Instrumentation &  Control Other operational  data Customer DataAsset Data Figure 4: A snapshot of the part of the data structure in practical terms Page 11
  12. 12. In pure instrumentation & control instrumentation the point of the sub-sect of the layer is for the operational control of both the collection & distribution networks and the various treatment plants and how they react with the various physical control devices (such as valves & penstocks). The development in the next few years are likely to split the types of instrumentation that is available. So, on the one hand there is a drive to a significantly greater number of sensors & instruments at a significantly cheaper cost providing a simple state or number to a complex digital controller. This is the principle of the Industrial Internet of Things with multiple sources of data providing the current state to a data analytics engine. However for on-site control systems there has to be at least a fall-back system should there be a communications failure. This is where WITS DNP3 comes into play where the simple data that is collected on-site is controlled to an on-site control system. The key is that if site communications should fail for whatever reason there is still a control system to control the works. This is possible for simple measurement parameters such as flow, level, pressure etc. The second driver associated with instrumentation within the Water Industry is the instrumentation which by necessity is complex and in some cases also is a miniature control system. So for example one of the big drivers moving forward is phosphorus in the wastewater side of the industry where the level of treatment is increasing significantly as in key & sensitive areas consent limits are to drop to 0.25mg/L P as an annual average. This means that the desire would be to treat down to a level in the region of 0.025mg/L total phosphorus. This means that in order to measure on-line a virtual portable laboratory has to be present on-site which has associated maintenance needs. On-site control systems whether they be on an individual element of the works or covering the whole works is a central tenant of the wastewater industry and there are elements of the work that potentially needs either a whole site treatment model as part of the central control system (which is more part of layer 4). So, what are the developments in this particular layer? Mainly the demand will be for cheap sensors and for high end sensors with integrated control systems so for example for small works control where a full-blown control system does not make financial sense but could provide benefit in undertaking both measurement & control on-site. An example of this need over the next 10 years or so is that flow management from the customer’s house all the way through the collection system to treatment and discharge. Some of the big drivers are pollutions, combined storm overflow management and flow to full treatment control. Basically, the hydraulic management of wastewater flows through the wastewater system. Now the sensing element of this can be undertaken via simple level sensors or ideally level measurement complete with pressure measurement on rising mains. This ensures that any problem with hydraulic management within the entire wastewater systems is highlighted meaning action, as necessary, can be taken. As the methodology of sensing is simple and the number of sensors is large it can easily be achieved with relatively cost- effective monitoring. As a second example where a treatment works is in a sensitive area and the phosphorus consent is necessarily as low as 0.25mg/L then a complex system involving incoming phosphorus monitor, dosing control system, potentially a mid-process monitor, secondary system and final effluent monitor. So for the future a entire phosphorus control system may well be necessary to address very tight consented values. One of the specific instrument types is that of the Smart Water Meter and how it can be used to increase water efficiency. It is an area of interest that is not only being highlighted by programmes such as that of Thames Water that is looking for 100% coverage by 2030 but also by organisations such as the National Infrastructure Commission. It was also highlighted this year by both the Black & Veatch Strategic Directions report for the Water Industry in 2017 and also fulfils a lot of the themes that OFWAT had in their report on “Unlocking the value in customer data.” In the OFWAT report there was sub-themes around shared value and control over the customers data but also has the potential to feed into innovative uses of data. The question is where Smart Water Meter Data will go as there are huge potential benefits over the use of AMR or AMI type flow meters depending upon the frequency of the data collected. Figure 5 form the Black & Veatch’s Strategic Directions report shows the benefits surrounding Smart Water Meters. The benefits are not only providing valuable data in terms of non-revenue water but have multiple benefits to both the customer and the water company including allowing the customer to be more aware of what water is being used and the water company knowledge of high consumption areas and the potential to understand & address localised problems. There are some area of the industry that are facing water resource issues and the installation of Smart Water meters has been proven to save around 18% of the water demand. There are huge potential areas of opportunity in the Water Industry and is through the proper use of instrumentation and the collection of accurate data that will drive the industry forward. Layer 3 - Data collection & communication The transmission of data in the water industry and its transfer to a telemetry based system has always been relatively conservative in the Water Industry with small sites the territory of analogue loops with site SCADA systems moving towards a Profibus based network on-site for very large sites. Analogue loops have been the traditional communication methodology with Profibus being the innovation in the past 15 years. There have been other systems but for one reason or another they have not been particularly adopted in the Water Industry. The HART protocol, which has been around for a few decades is an example of this. More recently, depending upon the application, have been adopted in the water industry including the use of GSM/GPRS and the use of Low Powered Radio but also Ethernet IP and Low Powered Wide Area Networks through organisations like the LORA Alliance. On top of this is the Water Industry Telemetry Standard (WITS) with WITS-DNP3 and more recently WITS-IOT. On top of this, on sites, there are communication protocols between people and the instruments themselves traditionally using a HART handheld but more Figure 5: AMR v AMI (From Black & Veatch Strategic Directions Report) Page 12
  13. 13. recently using both Bluetooth & Near Field Communication. With security provided with PIN numbers and also the need to be relatively close to the device and actually knowing that it is there with the device only able to be seen with particular software needs. All of this comes at a cost and probably why things have changed slowly within the Water Industry is that there is an existing communications infrastructure that cannot easily be changed. This is a system that is changing with the advent of the Internet of Things but care of course is essential with the cyber-security of the system. Moving forward the industry is, in the UK at least, moving towards the Water Industry Telemetry Standard but to the layman its complicated as LORA works on the principles of WITS-IOT but the instrument manufacturers ask “where the instruments fit in to all of this.” Looking at it from a “Layman’s” point of view WITS-DNP3 sits on larger sites with high volumes of data, process monitoring and sites that have a high criticality where WITS-IOT sits on much smaller sites which by nature are more numerous in number but with potentially limited communications. To get consistency across the industry is obviously the major benefit and as moving forward over the next few years this will be seen across the industry. Layer 4 – Data & Information Management & Display Once all of the data is brought together it is a case of what to do with it and this has always been the area that for control systems where SCADA systems have been. The technology is well-used across multiple industries and is well suited to large water & wastewater treatment works and less used for small works or networks where a PLC can provide local control and telemetry transmit externally. It is at this layer that products and services are really coming into their own. The Industry has seen Software as a Service being offered for a number of years now and with the developments of various cloud based solutions the line between Layer 4 and Layer 5 is blurring. Layers 4 & 5 are all about the displaying of data and the analytics to get information from the data that is collected be this thorough the integration of data into information and a straight use of the data to information ratio for a single data point or the integration of multiple different data strands and the analytics of this data to bring operational insight. The former is more within the remit of Layer 4 and is more about data & information management and the latter more the remit of Layer 5 where informational analytics become the primary focus. The concept of Small Information is more about the correct and useful integration of data and its conversion to operational information on an operational level. In taking the data strands that are collected on (mainly) large sites where thousands of individual data points are collected and converting them to 20-30 pieces of daily information to track the operational performance of the treatment works. Typically, there is a data to information ratio of approximately 1000 – 1. How to display that information is one of the next frontiers in the Water Industry as most operators in the field have tablets & mobile phones both of which can be turned into work tools for not only communicating with instruments or as a replacement for a PLC screen but also have the potential to display real time processed information to operators and managers alike across the business. From an operational and management point of view there is a huge value in getting one version of the corporate truth by giving the operator in the field, wherever they are, all the information they need to effectively do there job. The problem within the water industry is that the data & information has been tied up in discrete parcels, in discrete operational technology software programmes and this means that a lot of the effort internally has a huge potential to be duplicated and is not visible to those throughout the company. Layer 5 – Data Fusion & Analysis The final area within the SWAN Layers is the fusion of data and the data analytics. Now it’s confusing to what this actually is but to me it’s not the case of Small Information taken from the data from individual sites but it is looking at data from different sources and bringing that into an analytics platform. It is bringing all of the sources together on a system or regional basis. Figure 6 shows a modified version of the SWAN Infrastructure with atypical examples of what each layer includes. With this the data fusion and analysis layer is more about a systematic approach bringing all of the information sources together. Layer 5 – Data Fusion Layer 4 – Data & Information Management & Display Layer 3 – Data Communication & Collection Layer 2 – Instrumentation, physical control & data production Layer 1 ‐ Infrastructure Pipes, Tanks, Filters, manual valves – the basic infrastructure The  instruments  &  automated  control  systems  but  also  how  the  data  is  produced  so  could  include  manual  sampling  results  or  laboratory testing results How  the  data  is  transmitted  –  analogue  loops,  GSM/GPRS,  Ethernet,  Bus  protocols,  Low  Powered  Radio  anything  under  the  WITS Protocol or the LORA Alliance SCADA,  PLCs,  Telemetry  systems  but  could  include  local  displays  basically  anything  that  looks  at  a  site  by  site  basis  at  the  data  &  information that is produced System  based  analytics  looking  at  not  just  a  works  but  the  associated  network,  potentially  the  discharge  environment  and  customer consumption and using it to give a whole picture Figure 6 - an example of the practical elements of the SWAN Layers diagram Page 13
  14. 14. To use an example of a wastewater system including the collection network and treatment system there are a lot of different elements. This can be seen in figure 7. Now this diagram is not all inclusive but is a potential atypical example. We have already seen data fusion & analysis in various singular applications within the water industry. These have been mainly as Software as a Service applications but have very successfully been used, mainly on the Potable Water side of the business this has included: MISER - Water Network Management TaKaDU - Water Non-Revenue Water Management WONE - Water Non-Revenue Water Management There are other systems and these are just examples of systems that are well developed and available currently. But on top of this other platforms promise to take a more holistic approach to data fusion and analysis including the Asset 360 system from Black & Veatch and the Mindsphere system from Siemens. Now it is in these systems that the data fusion and analytics engines can give a much fuller picture of the performance of the system. However, they do rely on accurate data & information and without that the higher systems might as well not exist. What isn’t included is looking at customer data, in particular from Smart Water Meters. On a customer by customer basis looking at the base consumption of a household to detect customer side leakage. Although the difficulty of looking at all of this customer by customer requires some sort of data management algorithm to be able to cope with the sheer volume of data that is generated. This is one of the areas that Big Data can help with the Water Industry. Looking at areas of Smart Water meters also helps to understand distribution system water loss on a DMA approach although this pretty well managed at the current time. What Else? What isn’t mention so far and will forever be a factor within the Water Industry is the subject of Cyber- Security. In the past few years it has become a subject of increasing. What is clear that the issue will always be existence and like the approach that is taken in potable water treatment a “Swiss Cheese” or multi-layer approach has to be taken. This is defence in depth and most importantly includes education and staff at its centre and after that the technological methodologies of detection. This includes keeping Information Technology and Operational Technology separate so that the risks of infecting SCADA or telemetry systems and connecting them to the internet is limited. However with cloud based storage the line of separation is blurring. This means that Cyber Security in order to protect the business vulnerabilities is becoming a huge area of opportunity within the Water Industry. Most of what has been said so far has been looking inwards to within the water companies themselves but there are also huge opportunities in engaging with the companies. At the moment social media is well managed by the Water Companies as a medium of assisting customers but what else can be realised here. Other industries certainly use social media mining techniques for insights on particular subject areas. Within the water industry this would work very well with leakage & pollution detection or possible visual impacts that the industry has on a day to day basis on the customers lives but also could be used to inform the customer of disruption in a particular area, something that is already starting to occur already. Some of the things that are only just occurring is using this sort of approach for behavioural influencing of the customer whether it is on water consumption or to prevent sewer abuse. Mainly the technique that is used is gamification and in fact some water companies have released mobile phone games as educational tools. It certainly an area to consider for the Water Industry. Bringing it together? So, to come back to the original question that was asked at the start of this article – “Where does the water industry and the “Smart” Industry collide? In truth throughout out the whole of the industry itself. At the infrastructure level it checking that all of the infrastructure is in a fit state. This is basic asset management. Moving towards instrumentation and control it is the divergence of the different levels of instrumentation from the very basic device which is just there for providing a signal or a number to the complex devices that act as basic control systems. The point being one of managing the informational flow and being able to make informed decision to increase the efficiency of operations whilst maintaining product quality. Moving up a level into the communication level it is all about the WITS protocol and the Internet of Things and its integration into the Water Industry. It’s all about managing the flow of data in a way that it is consistent and useable across all of the data & information systems but is also all about managing the non-traditional data sources that are more difficult to tie together. Onwards on to data & information systems it all about making sure that the right information is available for the right person and the right use and is available in the right place. It sounds like a relatively easy task but the reasons for doing it must be right otherwise there is no purpose in doing it in the first place and the Water Industry and the Smart Industry will pass like ships in the night. Figure 7: An example of the different elements of a wastewater management system Page 14
  15. 15. Focus on: Flow Control for Flow Management Introduction Managing flow through the Wastewater System, be it the collection network or the treatment system, is as an important as ever. The wastewater network is going through a programme of event duration monitoring checking on the performance of combined storm overflows and work on pumping stations to increase their efficiency is also being done by the innovative among the water companies. All of this is in order to reduce pollutant loads on the environment during storm periods. One of the next big areas of flow management is the control of flows through wastewater treatment works ensuring that flows to treatment are at the levels they are consented to be and there is work to look at extending this in order to protect the environment. All of this depends upon some that is a basic within the order industry, the control of flow. In the following article we will look at some of the basic ways that the water industry uses to control the pass forward flows to the treatment works ensuring that the right flows are passed to the right places. Simply this can be split into two main areas Passive Flow Control Active Flow Control Passive Flow Control Passive Flow Control is probably the simplest of all the methods of flow control and is often governed by a civil structure. There are no moving parts and it relies on the restriction of flow by some method normally causing levels to rise and overflow over a weir or down a bell-mouth. The restriction of flow can be controlled by a number of different methods. Flume and Weir arrangements Flumes are more often associated with flow measurement but it is often forgotten that they are also flow control devices. For flow measurement they work on the principle that the faster the flow the higher the level within the flume. This, in a free flowing flume, is governed by the following equation: Where: Q is flow rate C is the free-flow coefficient for the flume Ha is the head at the primary point of measurement n varies with flume size (e.g. 1.55 for a 1-inch flume) Now that was the technical bit. If you look at what a flume looks like they it is evident the way that a flume works. The flow passes from the top of figure 1 to the bottom, as the flume narrows the height of the flow raises. Using the universal flow equation, which is Where Q = Flow (m3/s) V = Velocity (m/s) A = Area (m2) Figure 1 - Flume & approach Page 15
  16. 16. And of course the area is split into width multiplied by the height. Now the velocity won’t change as the flow is free discharging and so the only parameter that can change is the height. As the change of flow creates a change in level then this can obviously be used to control pass forward flow. Figure 2 shows an extreme example of a flume and storm split arrangement with the flume raising the height of the flows and causing excess flows to spill over not just the side weirs but the rectangular notch weirs before the flume. This makes the point that not just flumes can be used, although they are the most common but weir plates can be used as well. With every technique there are benefits and there are limitations. With both flumes and weirs the obvious benefit is that they can be used for flow measurement as well (although not the example in figure 2). This will of course need an appropriate approach length to the flume (so that levels are stable) and of course this takes space. The disadvantages are that flumes, although they are civil structure, are actually very sensitive measurement devices that need care to keep accurate and if this is not the case they tend to read high and thus will pass forward lower flows that the pass forward flow. What this means is that flumes need to kept clean and need to be checked periodically for their accuracy. It is all takes some skill to install a flume as they have precisely level to within a few mm across the length of a flume or their accuracy suffers and if this is the case their ability to control flow suffers although this can be corrected by managing the height of the storm weirs. In general though they do need to be free-discharging as if they become flooded the control function is lost. Orifice plates Orifice plates are another type of restrictive device and can also be used to measure flow and are often used in conjunction with balancing tanks. Basically an orifice plate is a thin plate with a hole in it, which is usually placed in a pipe. When a fluid passes through the orifice, its pressure builds up slightly upstream of the orifice but as the fluid is forced to converge to pass through the hole, the velocity increases and the fluid pressure decreases. A little downstream of the orifice the flow reaches its point of maximum convergence, the vena contracta where the velocity reaches its maximum and the pressure reaches its minimum. Beyond that, the flow expands, the velocity falls and the pressure increases. By measuring the difference in fluid pressure across tappings upstream and downstream of the plate, the flow rate can be obtained from Bernoulli’s equation. In general, the mass flow rate qm measured in kg/s across an orifice can be described as: Where: Cd coefficient of discharge, dimensionless, typically between 0.6 and 0.85, depending on the orifice geometry and tappings. Β diameter ratio of orifice diameter d to pipe diameter D , dimensionless. ε expansibility factor, 1 for incompressible gases and most liquids, and decreasing with pressure ratio across the orifice, dimensionless. d internal orifice diameter under operating conditions, m ρ1 fluid density in plane of upstream tapping, kg/m³ Δρ differential pressure measured across the orifice, Pa Figure 2: Flume Controlled storm split Page 16
  17. 17. Basically the orifice plate restricts the flow and causes the level to rise. It is accurately sized so will only pass forward the maximum desired flow rate. If flows increase above this flow rate then the level in the balancing tank rises and in the same principle as the flume approach overflows, what is normally, a fixed weir. The difference between the flume approach and the orifice plate approach is that the orifice plate is on a close pipe as opposed to the flume approach on an open channel. Orifice plates can be used in conjunction with floating arms to provide a variable flow rate by restricting at least part of the orifice up to the maximum flow which would be 100% of the orifice plate. Floating arms can also be used with penstocks. The advantages and disadvantages of orifice plates and their variants are that they are simple devices but like a flume or a weir are sensitive precision tools. They are thus sensitive to fouling and blocking and any damage to the orifice plate at all will have a deleterious effect on the accuracy and thus the ability to control flow. Hydro-brakes A hydro-brake is another type of in-pipe restrictive device but unlike an orifice plate it works on creating a vortex. This works in a similar fashion to a draining bath, albeit a much larger version. The design is simple, consisting of an intake, a volute and an outlet. Flow is directed tangentially into the volute to form a vortex. High peripheral velocities induce an air-filled core with resulting back pressure that reduces the discharge. This back-pressure produces a head-discharge co-efficient which again increases the head behind the hydro-brake and together with an overflow weir works to restrict flows to the pass forward flow Hydro-brakes are much more commonly used within the wastewater network but are also used on wastewater treatment works. Figure 4 shows how a Hydro-brake works and Figure 5 shows a hydro-brake in place. Like any restrictive flow control techniques the danger is if the control device gets fouled or blocked. Although the risk of this is normally minimised by good engineering design this is still the main risk of the flow control technique. Figure 3: Balancing tank floating arm complete with orifice plate style restriction Figure 4: Series of pictures showing the function of a Hydrobrake (credit: Hydro International) Page 17
  18. 18. Active Flow Control As opposed to passive flow control there are occasions where flows are managed using moving control devices. This is when passive flow control becomes active. In order to achieve this it is necessary to measure the flow or it is necessary to design the flow control with a fixed pass forward flow. Actuated penstock control In open channels, instead of using a passive flume it is possible to use an actuated penstock device to ensure that the pass forward flow is regulated to a set flow rate. This is easily achieved by using a combination of flow monitoring, an actuator and a penstock within an open channel. This is done by lowering the penstock to restrict the pass forward flow. This controls the level in the channel by ensuring the flow that is pass forward through the flow meter is to the set point. Anything measured higher will restrict the pen-stock downwards and viceaversa. Upstream storm weirs separate the flows. The reverse can be done by using the penstock as a weir to control and split flows although this is not normally the case for managing pass forward flows. Figure 6 shows a typical flume and actuated penstock arrangement. The problems with this technique is mainly centred around the flow measurement and the complexity of it. With a flume arrangement the penstock device has to be suitably placed so as not to interfere with the flume hydraulics and lastly the main restriction on the technique is the speed of the penstock. This is can become a problem on particularly large flow control applications as if the penstock is move too quickly there is a risk of damage to the penstock itself. Figure 5: Hydrobrake in a balancing tank controlling pass forward flow Figure 6: Storm channel with downstream automated penstock control Page 18
  19. 19. Pass Forward Pumping Flow Control The last technique that we will look at as part of this article is that of using pass forward pumps. This technique is very simple insofar as the pass forward pumps are designed to pass forward the set flow rate and no more. If more flows that are designed enter the pumping station wet well then the well will fill up. The size of the well acts as a balance tank for a period of time if the incoming flow rate exceeds the pumped pass forward flow. A high level overflow on the wet well of the pumping station acts as the storm split. Figure xx shows this in a simple pumping station arrangement. In the figure the pumps on their guide rails can be seen with a simple overflow on the right-hand side of the picture, The benefit of the technique is the simplicity. If flows have to be pumped within a site then it is an obvious and simple technique to use. The obvious disadvantage of the technique is either pump wear, blockage or failure will either restrict flows to below the regulated pass forward flow or will stop it in its entirety. This is normally mitigated by checking the pass forward flows of the pumps intermittently or using high level sensors and pump alarms to protect against failure. Wrapping it up This paper was not meant to be all inclusive and not meant to be a fully detailed synopsis of the flow control techniques that are in existence. There are in fact many variations on a theme. It was meant to be a brief introduction to the field of flow control. Something that will become more and more important over the next few years (in the UK at least). If the basic design principles are at least understood and adhered to there are huge benefits to the water industry in managing flows in line with the best design principles Figure 7: Pass Forward Pumping Flow Control with high level overflow to storm i2O Ships 15,000th Smart Data Logger i2O, the smart water network solutions company, recently announced that it has shipped its 15,000th data logger. The device, built by i2O engineers at its assembly centre in Woolston, Southampton, has been shipped to Chile in a batch of loggers that will be used to monitor water pressure and flow in one of the country’s large urban water networks. i2O’s data loggers form part of a range of smart water network solutions used by more than 100 water utilities around the world to respond to challenges created by an increasing and urbanising population, more extreme weather events, ageing infrastructure, more demanding customers and constraints on expenditure. The loggers can be used to gather and transmit detailed data relating to water demand, flow, pressure, asset condition and transients from points of interest on distribution networks. Once analysed, this data enables water companies to take steps that reduce leakage, burst frequency, energy use, operational costs and customer complaints. i2O’s state-of-the-art assembly centre was opened by Caroline Nokes MP in July 2016 and is capable of producing more than 20,000 units a year. Engineers at the world-class facility use lean manufacturing and quality management processes to ensure product quality and maximise throughput. Joel Hagan, CEO at i2O, commented: “This is a major milestone for i2O that was made possible by our investment in a state-of-the-art assembly facility and the efforts our clients continue to make to improve their environmental, financial and customer service performance. i2O’s data loggers are making water networks smarter and more responsive around the world, and helping water utilities address many of the major strategic challenges they face today.” Page 19
  20. 20. September 2017 Sensing in Water 2017 27th -28th September 2017 Nottingham Belfry, Nottingham, UK Hosted by the Sensors for Water Interest Group October 2017 WEFTEC 30th September - 4th October 2017 Chicago, USA Hosted by WEF Wetsus Congress 9th - 10th October 2017 Leeuwarden, Holland Hosted by Wetsus November 2017 WEX Global 7th - 9th November 2017 Seville, Spain Hosted by WEX Global Innovation Brokerage Workshop 22nd November 2017 University of Bath, UK Hosted by the Sensors for Water Interest Group Page 20 Conferences, Events, Seminars & Studies Conferences, Seminars & Events Sensing in Water Where: Nottingham Belfry When: 27th - 28th September 2017 The 4th biennial conference and exhibition promises to be bigger and better than ever! In 2015, 180 people attended Sensing in Water over the 2 days of the conference, including 12 major water companies. 40 exhibitors presented their products and services in the exhibition, many of whom are repeat customers at our conference so don’t miss the opportunity to advertise and raise your profile to the water sensor community! The theme of this years conference is “meaningful measurement from micro to macro” taking the application of sensor technology with the sessions over the two day conference concentrating on • Sensor Design & Performance • Sensor application at the Treatment Works • Sensor application within networks & infrastructure • Sensor application within environmental catchments With keynote speakers from Welsh Water & the Environment Agency and over 20 speakers in total the event promises to be an interesting few days. The latest draft programme is available here Innovation Brokerage Workshop Where: University of Bath When: 22nd November 2017 There is a wealth of new technology and innovation being developed in UK universities which often translates into the development of new products in industry. Successful translation and exploitation of academic research depends on recognising potential and forming necessary collaborations. This SWIG Innovation workshop is designed to bring together academic research groups and interested companies to identify potential technologies, collaboration, exploitation opportunities in the area of sensor technologies developed for use in water. The need for new sensor technologies for water is often driven by legislation and the need for regular measurements at lower concentrations, or the need for more rapid or more reliable measurements made at remote sensing sites. This encompasses a wide range of technologies that are used for measuring physical, chemical or biological parameters in or of water. For examples sensors that measure water pressure, height or chemical and biosensors for measuring dissolved components, pollutants or microorganisms.
  21. 21. Sensing in Water 2017 “Meaningful Measurement from Micro to Macro” 27th - 28th September 2017 Nottingham Belfry, UK Page 21