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WIPAC Monthly - May 2018


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Now on its 80th edition WIPAC Monthly is one of the Water Industry's premium publications for Instrumentation, Automation & Control and related subjects in the Water Industry.

In this edition there are articles on

The effectiveness of the use of satellites for leak detection

The maintenance of electro-magnetic flow meters with special reference to their maintenance, calibration and cleaning regimes

An article on treating data as an asset management class as well as another article on the use of Big Data in the Water Industry.

Lastly there is a plea to the general water industry to support the ongoing costs associated with producing WIPAC Monthly. It is published for the use of everyone however it will close if it cannot afford to support itself and thus donations to the operational costs of WIPAC Monthly are being asked for though either Kickstarter or through the Patreon website at

Published in: Engineering
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WIPAC Monthly - May 2018

  1. 1. WIPAC MONTHLYThe Monthly Update from Water Industry Process Automation & Control Issue 5/2018- May 2018
  2. 2. Page 2 In this Issue From the Editor.................................................................................................................... 3 Industry News................................................................................................................. 4 - 11 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. Assessing the effectiveness of leak seeking satelites.......................................................... 12-14 In this article by Paul Gagliardo of American Water the effectiveness of leak seeking satelites, with particarly reference to the Utilis system is discussed showing that methodology can help the Boots on the Ground Approach increasing its effectiveness by pinpoint areas of investigation Maintaining electro-magnetic flow meters in wastewater................................................. 15-17 In this month’s feature article group manager of WIPAC, Oliver Grievson, discusses the approach taken in maintaining closed-pipe electro-magnetic flow meters with particular reference to factory calibration, in-situ verification and also the importance of knowing when it is necessary to clean electro-magnetic flow meters Managing infrastructure presents a growing digital challenge........................................... 18 In this article by asset management specialist Mark Kaney of Sweco the challenge of managing the amount of data that is produced by the Water Industry is highlighted exposing the need to treat data as an asset class and develop the skills of managing data within the water industry Beyond the Buzzword: How utility operators can use Big Data........................................... 19-20 Big Data as a concept and a buzzword has been around for many years now and yet its potential has not been realised in the Water Industry. in this article by Telog, one of the Trimble group of companies the potential of using Big Data for various applications across the industry is discussed as is the use of Big Data to increase customer service Workshops, Conferences & Seminars................................................................................. 21-22 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. However due to the ongoing costs of WIPA Monthy a donation website has been set up to allow readers to contribute to the running of WIPAC & WIPAC Monthly, For those wishing to donate then please visit all donations will be used solely for the benefit and development of WIPAC. 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 The main focus this month has been on the “Future of WIPAC,” and where the group is going. As already mentioned it has got to the point where WIPAC & WIPAC Monthly is need of supporting itself or in reality flourishing to the point where it is offering more to you the readers (of WIPAC Monthly) and members of the group. In the seven years it has been in existence it has been funded by me for the good of the global industry and it has brought some interesting times and some interesting things. Some of the things that I am particularly proud of is the way that the group has flourished in numbers and how the subject of the group is becoming very popular. I hope in some small way that WIPAC is responsible for that. The other things that I am proud of is the Flow Forum and Instrumentation Apprentice Competition at the Water, Wastewater Environmental Monitoring Conference & Exhibition. The development of Apprentices, in a small way allowing them to compete with each other is particularly satisfying and the popularity for this years competition with a total of seven teams competing makes it very satisfying. All of this has not been without controversy,especially with the Instrumentation Apprentice Competition and it pains me to see that some thought there was an ulterior motive behind all of it. In actual truth, like everything to do with WIPAC it is done for the good of the industry and for those of you want to take part the door is always open. Things have however come to a crunch and the WIPAC Initiative will either flourish and develop in further, in fact there are plans in this regard or it will finally close its doors and the last edition of WIPAC Monthly will be dated December 2018. Thank you to all of you who have sent me messages that it is something that has done some good in the industry and I honestly think it has and I honestly think it is something that can provide even more of a service to the industry moving forward but things have to change. To be blunt it is something that needs the generosity of its members in providing their patronage in one of a few ways. In this regard I have set up two things. The first is a Patreon website where members can give small sums of money on an ongoing basis to help fund the on-going costs of the group and help in its development, this website is at, included in this are some offers for companies to provide ongoing funding for the group surrounding the new developments in WIPAC & WIPAC Monthly that are to come. There is also a Kickstarter project that has launched as well. This is mainly for development funds for WIPAC and will either raise the money it aims to raise or it will fail (with Kickstarter it is either all or nothing). This is mainly for development purposes and in reality I hope it is over-subscribed. This enables one of donations to the development of WIPAC. The link for the Kickstarter project is So what do I hope to achieve if WIPAC continues and flourishes? Firstly I am developing a new website for WIPAC that is going to be very much a knowledge platform and will include WIPAC Monthly of course but also other features such as events pages and a knowledge management section for White Papers, Training Videos and Webinars. Talks are just starting with sources in Europe that could see this proliferate but also the project that I have been meaning to for many years, the WIPAC Directory, which will include company pages and details of instruments will also feature. With the right funding from the WIPAC “movement” then it is something that we as a global water industry can see flourish but it will all depend upon the generosity of the members of the group, the alternative will see WIPAC close at the end of this year and then I fear that all of the good that it has done may well be lost. Have a good month and please visit the funding pages and be as generous as you can Oliver
  4. 4. WIPAC celebrates its 7th birthday and looks to change the way it works Smart Technology featured well in this year’s Water Industry Achievement Awards with five technology based initiatives winning prizes at the awards ceremony this month. Customer Service Initiative of the Year: WINNER: Northumbrian Water - Utileyes Northumbrian Water took home the Customer Service Initiative of the Year award for the development of Utileyes, a mobile app that allows customers to use the camera and video in their personal devices to show technicians at the water company problems at their property in real time. Launched in July 2017, the technology means that the water company can carry out a ‘virtual visit’ to a customer, giving them much more accurate information than a telephone conversation alone and removing the need for multiple visits to a property. Where it has been used so far it has enabled domestic customer leaks to be fixed in an average of 1.5 days, compared to 3 days where in-person visits only were used. Data Project of the Year: WINNER: APEM, Dwr Cymru Welsh Water, NRW APEM, Dwr Cymru Welsh Water and Natural Resources Wales won the Data Project of the Year award for their development of a multi-disciplinary impact assessment approach for the impact of water abstraction on shad populations. The project used field surveys, aerial and drone surveying, and digital and ecological modelling to gather data from multiple sources about this rare and protected species of fish and their eggs. The collected data successfully enabled the project partners to agree on new conditions for the water abstraction licence which would ensure there would be no adverse impact upon either the shad population or upon site integrity. Most Innovative New Technology of the Year: WINNER: EMS - CENTAUR Environmental Monitoring Solutions Ltd (EMS) took home the coveted Most Innovative New Technology of the Year award for its CENTAUR system for local urban flood risk reduction. CENTAUR – which was developed with the help of 3M Euro EU funding beginning in September 2015 – is an intelligent autonomous system which uses an algorithm to analyse local level data and control the flow of water using smart flow control gates. The solution can be retrofitted into confined urban spaces in order to limit CSO spills, complement storage and SuDS solutions and reduce the need for expensive and space-consuming new tanks. A number of CENTAUR systems can be linked together to form intelligent wastewater networks. Most Innovative Use of Existing Technology: WINNER: Severn Trent and Malvern Panalytical Severn Trent Water and Malvern Panalytical were the winners of the Most Innovative Use of an Existing Technology award for their development of the Online Zetasizer. This is a fully automated, on-line analyser system for the measurement of Zeta Potential, a parameter which helps optimise coagulation and clarification processes in treatment plants. The Online Zetasizer is now installed at four major surface water treatment works within Severn Trent, and is a commercially available product. It provides the capability to both optimise chemical usage in coagulation and clarification, and manage risk in these processes, allowing a more robust operation. The Zetasizer provides the ability to trend data and configure alarms and notifications remotely, and now has an automated control system to optimise the chemical dose based on the analyser’s findings. Health & Safety Initiative of the Year: JOINT WINNERS: Lanes Group and Affinity Water There were joint winners in the Health and Safety Initiative of the Year category, where the judges were unable to split two particularly strong entries. It was agreed to divide the spoils: Lanes Group were recognised with Health and Wellbeing Initiative of the Year, while Affinity Water received Safety Initiative of the Year. Lanes Group’s winning initiative was the Wellbeing App, a novel approach to supporting the well-being of its workforce working as the wastewater network services maintenance partner for Thames Water. When field workers log on to their mobile device for the start of their shift, they are required to answer the question of how happy they feel. Staff answering the question with ‘unhappy’ or ‘very unhappy’ are then given the option of being contacted by professional well-being practitioner, who can offer either mental health support, or advocacy in sorting out work problems with management. The professional well-being practitioner is there to work with the employee on any problems they have, inside or outside work. In the large majority of cases the issues are not work- related. Smart Water Industry features well at the Water Industry Achievement Awards The Water Industry Process Automation & Control Group has this month celebrated its 7th Birthday since it was set up on 16th May 2011. As part of the announcement group manager, Oliver Grievson, announced that the way the group will work moving forward will need to change relying more on contributions for the operation of both WIPAC & WIPAC Monthly from the readership as previous surveys have indicated that the group does not want to move towards an advertising model. This is due to the increasing operational costs of running the group and magazine. To enable this both a Patreon page has setup at www.patreon.comWIPAC and a Kickstarter project is being put together. All of the funding is going to be used to cover the operational cost of the group as well as, if sufficient funds are raised, the group’s expansion. This will include a new-look website which will act as an information and knowledge portal which will include lots of content including training videos, webinars, white papers as well as a company area that will see at least the principles of the WIPAC Directory brought to life, a vision that the WIPAC group has been trying to deliver for a number of years to help facilitate the use of Instrumentation, Automation & Control in the Water Industry Page 4 Industry News
  5. 5. BlueTech Forum reveals top water tech companies A global event taking place in Canada will feature 13 ground-breaking technologies developed for the water sector. Digital, biotech and membrane technologies are among the top 13 selected to take part in BlueTech Forum in Vancouver on 6-7 June 2018. The global water event is celebrating the theme of managing water risk in the circular economy and BlueTech Research chief executive Paul O’Callaghan says the chosen technologies demonstrate major new efficiencies in the way resources are conserved, captured and re-purposed in the treatment plant and the wider infrastructure. “BlueTech Research has an unparalleled record in the continuous tracking of technological trends and emerging technologies in water and the companies chosen to present in the innovation showcase signpost the wider trends,” he said. “I’m delighted that delegates will have the opportunity to find out first-hand about some of the most advanced technologies in the world. “The companies we have selected have technologies for applications as diverse as energy recovery, water quality sampling, sludge monitoring and ultra-filtration. Uniquely, the technologies will be presented at separate round-tables where delegates will have the opportunity to question the developers face-to-face.” O’Callaghan added, “The intimate setting and collaborative atmosphere of BlueTech Forum makes it very easy to form new business relationships and identify potential new partners. I am delighted that we can bring 13 outstanding technologies to the event and look forward to introducing them to delegates from global utilities, industrial end-users and the investment community.” The Innovation Showcase featured companies are: • Aqua Membranes – uses its unique patented 3D-printed spacer technology to boost permeate water flow, increasing the membrane surface in spiral-wound elements and significantly reducing membrane fouling. • Aquam - provides technologies for packaged wastewater treatment plants that can eliminate sludge, recover energy as direct electricity and enable onsite water reuse at significantly lower cost than incumbent technologies. • Cerahelix – has developed a durable ceramic filter that uses DNA to create micro-pores that can deliver high levels of water quality and lower energy consumption in industrial reuse applications. • Emagin - provides water utilities with an operational intelligence platform to enable smarter management of their critical processes in real-time. • Fluid Technology Solutions – forward osmosis technologies use low-fouling, long-life cellulose membranes to treat the most challenging wastewaters. • Genifuel - hydrothermal processing system (HPS) produces biocrude oil and renewable natural gas (methane) from wastewater, converting more than 85% of the feedstock carbon to renewable fuels. • HYREC - offers a hybrid FO-OARO (forward osmosis - osmotically assisted reverse osmosis) system to treat high strength waste streams • IONMR – has created the most durable and versatile high-performance anion-exchange membrane ever synthesized. • Island Water Technologies – has complete demonstration of the world’s first real-time bio-electrode sensor for the direct monitoring of microbial activity in wastewater treatment systems. • Microbe Detectives - applies advanced DNA sequencing to identify and quantify nearly 100% of the microbes in a sample of water, provides comprehensive microbial evaluations for water quality and disease management. • Purifics - has a proprietary ceramic ultra filtration (CUF) membrane technology which filters water and wastewater, destroys chemical and biological contaminants, facilitates clean water recovery and eliminates the need for backwash and pre-treatment. • TECTA-PDS - markets the world’s first automated microbiological water quality monitoring system, which considerably lowers the cost of monitoring. • World Water Works – has developed a wastewater treatment system that increases process throughput and performance through the gravimetric selection of dense sludge aggregates with improved settling rates and the promotion of enhanced biological phosphorus removal. Genifuel hydrothermal processing system Page 5
  6. 6. £660k EU research project to use smart technology to tackle global water issues A new £660k European project will see smart technologies and state-of-the-art sensors used to help tackle global water challenges and create a new generation of researchers. Birmingham City University and Greek technology firm Singular Logic have received €761,644 (£665,966) in funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Networks scheme. Other partners involved in the project are United Utilities Plc in North West England and Madrid based engineering consultancy Aqua-Consult Ingenieros. The funds will be used to train a team of researchers who will be tasked with helping solve major global issues such as water loss and water wastage. The four-year project, named Internet of Things Smart Water Innovative Networks (IoT4Win), will see academics work alongside industry partners in the UK, Romania, Greece and Spain to find ways to improve the efficiency of water systems. An array of smart technology sensors will be put to work to monitor and provide real-time updates on the quality, quantity and demand for water in urban areas and find new ways to provide accessible and affordable water. The developed technology could have a major impact on future policy by finding ways to improve the efficiency and performance of water systems across the UK and Europe. Three researchers will be appointed to the scheme and earn PhDs from Birmingham City University as part of the project to create a legacy of knowledge in the smart water sector, which could transform the way water utility companies and authorities operate in the future. Wenyan Wu, Professor in Advanced System Engineering at Birmingham City University lead investigator on IoT4Win, said: “With the rise in smart technology we now have a real opportunity to rethink how we view some everyday problems, and can gain a level of insight into issues of water we would never have been able to get before. “With the rise in smart technology we now have a real opportunity to rethink how we view some everyday problems, and can gain a level of insight into issues of water we would never have been able to get before. “This project presents a real opportunity for us to use sensor technologies, and the growth in the Internet of Things, to transform how we look at our water systems. It is hoped that the initiative will help spawn generation of researchers in the field and create a legacy of knowledge which can help create long-term solutions for water systems across the world. Data outputs from the project will be made publicly available so that they can be used to help shape future industry initiatives and government policy. Professor Hanifa Shah, Associate Dean for Research and Enterprise at Birmingham City University, added: “This is the first grant of its kind to be awarded to Birmingham City University and we are delighted to be at the forefront of looking at how new technologies can transform our approaches to water engineering in urban environments. “Using the long-standing expertise of our academics in advanced sensors, ICT and the Internet of Things we will be able to pass on knowledge and hopefully have a lasting impact through the training of the researchers on this project. “This project epitomises our commitment to working in partnership and joining up academic expertise with industry partners while training and developing doctoral researchers.” Launch Of SWAN Asia-Pacific Alliance To Accelerate Smart Water And Wastewater Growth In The Region In a first of its kind, the Smart Water Networks Forum (SWAN) has launched the SWAN Asia-Pacific Alliance, which will be free to join in its first year. The APAC Alliance, which includes progressive utilities and leading solution providers, seeks to advance the use of “smart”, data-driven water and wastewater solutions across the fast-growing region. George Theo, CEO of Unitywater and Chairman of the new SWAN APAC Alliance, commented: “This Alliance is a very important initiative, which will have a key role in sharing best regional smart water practices, generating cross-industry discussion, and encouraging cities to better understand and maximise their water data.” The Alliance is excited to announce that its first webinar, “Pioneering Utility Smart Water Innovation in Asia-Pacific”, will be free to attend on May 16th at 3pm (AEST). The webinar will feature innovative utility speakers from Unitywater, Watercare, and PUB Singapore. Click here for more information and to register to attend. In a joint effort with PUB, the SWAN APAC Alliance will co-lead a Smart Water Forum at Singapore International Water Week on the morning of July 11th at the Marina Bay Sands Singapore. During this event, there will be a special meet-and-greet for Alliance members. APAC Alliance Partners now include regional smart water and wastewater leaders: AVEVA, Cairns Regional Council, Coliban Water, Derceto, Echologics, Evoqua, i2O Water, Jacobs, Metasphere, Optimatics, OSIsoft, PUB Singapore, Pure Technologies, Queensland Urban Utilities, Taiwan Water Corporation, Unitywater, and Xylem. Page 6
  7. 7. Yorkshire Water asset management programme goes to Black and Veatch Severn Trent to publish energy data in hackathon event Severn Trent is making its energy usage data public to give experts and enthusiasts the opportunity to look for ways the water and waste company could make energy savings in the future. The company is hosting a data hackathon at its Coventry HQ on 18 and 19 June and is inviting businesses, local universities and others with related expertise to come along and is offering prizes for teams that can provide the best insights and energy-saving ideas in response to the data. Severn Trent, which serves eight million people across the Midlands and mid-Wales, currently uses around 900GWh (gigawatt hours) of electricity every year which equates to a bill of around £100M. While the company already generates 38% of the energy it uses by investing in renewable energy technology, largely through the anaerobic digestion of sewage sludge and food waste as well as through solar, hydro and wind turbine technology, it is intent on pursuing further savings. Howard Perry, Energy Manager for Severn Trent, explains: “Energy is one of the biggest costs to our business; we serve a huge geographical area and need to pump large amounts of water and waste to and from our customers. In fact the energy we use equates to the annual usage of about 250,000 households. “We’ve invested large amounts in developing renewable energy technology with a target to generate half of what we use by 2020, and we’re also working hard to reduce our energy usage as much as possible – but we know there’s more to be done. “That’s why we’re making this data public and are inviting leading data experts to help us shape the future of the company. This is all about getting a fresh pair of eyes on the way we use energy to see what innovations we can take advantage of to make us even more efficient. “Any savings we can make on our energy bills will reduce our operating costs, which is great news for our customers as it will help us to keep bills low.” Workstream 69, an asset management programme encompassing Yorkshire Water’s entire asset base, has been awarded to Black & Veatch. Because insight driven asset management is critical to customer satisfaction and regulatory compliance, Black & Veatch is implementing a lean reliability cen- tred maintenance (LRCM) programme. “We took the gold standard for asset management, aviation, where asset failure can be fatal, and tailored this best practice to Yorkshire Water’s needs,” said Christopher Steele, head of information management & analytics, Black & Veatch Water Europe. LRCM looks at what a process is intended to do, what factors stop the process from delivering, then works to mitigate those factors. Workstream 69 is one of the first, as well as the largest, RCM programmes undertaken by a UK water company. In another first, the Asset Information Standards, which dictate how the assets are recorded and the asset information held, were created with full participation of operations and maintenance (O&M) teams. This enabled a collaborative LRCM study, producing a condition-based maintenance programme based on failure modes, with O&M buy-in. This approach means time and money are focused on ensuring process and asset outputs are maintained. Initial indications are a circa 30 percent decrease in reactive O&M work. “By cost-efficiently reducing asset failure, this unique approach to the introduction of reliability centred maintenance for a water company will yield significant customer service, environmental and regulatory benefits,” Steele added. Innovative use of mobile technology also yielded benefits. iPads with Bluebeam enable live asset survey findings, and piping and instrumentation diagram updates, to be uploaded to a dynamic asset database. O&M teams in the field are using mobile devices to access the condition-based maintenance programme that guides their activities as well as to record and upload condition reports, in real-time. This is central to enabling the implementation an effective predictive maintenance regime covering 695 water and wastewater treatment works and 83,000 kilometres of water and sewerage pipes. Page 7
  8. 8. New legislation to protect UK’s critical infrastructure against cyber attack comes into force Tough new measures to protect the nation’s critical infrastructure and digital services from cyber attacks and computer network failure come into force this week. The Security of Network and Information Systems Directive (NIS Directive) was adopted by the European Parliament on 6 July 2016. Member States had until 9 May 2018 to transpose the Directive into domestic legislation. The Security of Network & Information Systems Regulations place legal obligations on providers to protect UK critical services by improving cyber-security. Heads of firms in health, water, energy, transport and digital infrastructure will now be expected to have robust safeguards in place against cyber threats and report breaches and network outages to regulators within 72 hours or they face fines of up to £17 million. The new law announced by Digital Minister Margot James is intended to help reduce the number of damaging cyber attacks affecting the UK. The National Cyber Security Centre, set up by the government in October 2016 as part of GCHQ, has already responded to more than 950 significant incidents, including WannaCry. It will also give new regulators powers to assess critical industries and make sure plans are in place to prevent attacks. The regulator will have the power to issue legally-binding instructions to improve security, and – if necessary – impose significant fines. The legislation will also cover other threats affecting IT such as power failures, hardware failures and environmental hazards. The designated Competent Authorities for drinking water supply and distribution are: • In England, the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs • In Wales, Welsh Ministers • In Scotland, the Drinking Water Quality Regulator • In Northern Ireland, the Department of Finance The Competent Authorities have been given duties and powers under the NIS Regulations for their sectors - the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) has the role of oversight of implementation of the regulations across the UK. Margot James, Minister for Digital and the Creative Industries, said: “It’s vital that we put in place tough new measures to strengthen the UK’s cyber security and make sure we are the safest place in the world to live and be online. “Organisations must act now to make sure that they are primed and ready to stop potential cyber attacks and be resilient against major disruption to the services we all rely on. “Fines would be a last resort and will not apply to operators which have assessed the risks adequately, taken appropriate security measures and engaged with regulators but still suffered an attack.” All incidents must be reported directly to the appropriate regulator. Where an incident has a cyber security aspect, the organisations concerned should contact the NCSC for support and advice. The NCSC will also act as the Single Point of Contact between the UK and EU Member States. As the UK’s technical authority on cyber security, the NCSC is supporting competent authorities and has developed a set of 14 cyber security principles, as well as supporting guidance, to improve the cyber security of operators of essential services. Ciaran Martin, Chief Executive of the NCSC, said: “These new measures will help to strengthen the security of the UK’s infrastructure. “By acting on the National Cyber Security Centre’s expert technical advice and reporting incidents, organisations can protect themselves against those who would do us harm. “The UK government is committed to making the UK the safest place to live and do business online, but we can’t do this alone. Every citizen, business and organisation must play their part.” The NIS Directive is an important part of the Government’s five-year £1.9 billion National Cyber Security Strategy to protect the nation from cyber threats and make the UK the safest place to live and work online. It will ensure essential service operators are taking the necessary action to protect their IT systems. Page 8
  9. 9. Smarter Spending: Using Data Analysis To Drive Infrastructure Investment Decisions Data analysis around pipe condition, inflow & infiltration (I&I), and overflows can build a case for the approval of infrastructure funding in budget planning. Municipalities and utilities in the U.S. have historically under-invested in the assets within their water and wastewater networks. Aging infrastructure and decades of deferred maintenance have created particular challenges in wastewater collection, as pipes, joints, and grouting in the sewer collection network deteriorate. As a result, they become susceptible to breaks, cracks, and the ingress of tree roots and other material, leading to blockages, obstructions, and ultimately inflow and infiltration (I&I) of groundwater and rainwater. Such breaches in the collection system increase the volume of wastewater that is collected and must be treated, straining not only treatment budgets but also capacity in networks that are, in many cases, already operating at or near their maximum design parameters. As a network ages, the frequency of I&I events tends to rise, creating a snowball effect of increasing costs and capacity challenges. Utility operators understand all too well that I&I is a reliable indicator of the condition of the wastewater collection system (i.e., an area with high I&I indicates poor asset conditions in that section of the network), but it can be difficult for utilities to both pinpoint the exact location of breaches or obstructions and to meet the ongoing costs of monitoring, inspecting, investigating, and responding to I&I incidents. Better Information Facilitates Better Planning And Incident Prevention Identifying when and where I&I events occur allows utilities to correct immediate operational problems, reduce the amount of storm water infiltrating the system, avoid the environmental and financial consequences of an overflow, understand where capital investments will be needed, and prioritize funding for those areas of the collection network most urgently in need of repair. While utilities can determine the overall degree of I&I in a system by comparing dry-weather flows against wet-weather flows, the key is to determine which parts of the collection system contribute the most I&I. This requires remote monitoring across the collection system to establish baseline dry flows in each interceptor and profile the response to wet-weather events. Remote monitoring systems give utilities better insight into conditions across the entire network by collecting data from flow meters and rain gauges deployed strategically throughout the system and relaying that data remotely to wastewater treatment operators. Data is gathered and transmitted continually, allowing operators to understand a system’s response to differing intensities of rain flow and to characterize and compare dry- and wet-weather flows after a number of wet-weather events. With analysis of this data, utility operators and engineering firms are able to create an accurate model of the collection network — including the specific location and source of any problems within the network — which can then be used not only for measurement and comparison, but as an operational response, condition assessment, and expenditure planning and prioritization tool. Alarms on both I&I and overflow levels allow utilities to respond quickly to an overflow incident. Most importantly, the tools help utilities gain a better understanding of the areas of highest I&I, helping them predict and avoid sanitary sewer overflow (SSO) and combined sewer overflow (CSO) events. Budget Planning, Budgetary Savings, And Better Decision Making Data collection and analysis helps utilities create a clear business case for infrastructure spending by helping to identify and prioritize the areas in greatest need of investment and predict the costs (in terms of maintenance, regulatory fines, or labour hours) of deferring much-needed repairs. There is also a clear business case to be made for the new monitoring and data collection systems themselves. Cloud-based systems are extremely cost-effective to deploy and shift the entire IT burden from the utility to the solution provider. In addition to helping municipalities target their investments and ensure their infrastructure dollars are spent in the most critical areas of the wastewater network, comprehensive monitoring, alarming, and data collection systems help wastewater utilities pre-empt damage to both infrastructure and the environment, avoid the regulatory penalties associated with recurring overflow events, and reduce the costs associated with treating and pumping storm water. By providing deeper insight and improved visibility across the entire wastewater collection system, remote monitoring and data collection solutions help utilities make more informed decisions and better meet their biggest fiscal and operational challenges. SWAN 2018 sees record number of attendees The annual SWAN Forum conference took place in Barcelona this month and has broken its attendance record of 2017 that saw 220 people attend to discover the benefits and trends of the Smart Water Industry. With a fantastic new look the conference saw speakers from a wider range of speakers including Peter Jackson from Southern Water, Travis Smith of Sensus and Beverly Rider of Hitachi. The conference also saw a wide range of Round-table events covering some of the key subjects in the Smart Water Industry from Advanced Pressure Management hosted by I20, Water Data Quality as a services by S::CANN , Synergetic Cyber Security hosted by ABB and Data Analytics in Wastewater Networks hosted by CH2M. The SWAN Forum is one of the premium events and organisations driving forward the Global Smart Water Industry. Page 9
  10. 10. Bluesky LiDAR supports major Irish Water supply project Detailed 3D data captured using aircraft-mounted laser is helping RPS Group plan, design and engineer a major overhaul of water supply in County Wicklow, Ireland. The Bluesky LiDAR data was used to assess various route options as water supply in the region south of Dublin is rationalised. The Bluesky data was also used to enhance topographical surveys to understand and mitigate the risk of flooding in relation to additional water supply infrastructure. Saeed Khan, technical director, RPS Europe, said: “Bluesky use the latest aerial survey technology in order to capture LiDAR data to exactly meet the requirements of a specific project. The density and accuracy of LiDAR makes it ideal for this type of project, giving unrivalled measurement of the earth’s surface and natural and man-made structures.” The Mid Wicklow Water Supply Scheme aims to address issues of water quality, limitations of source availability and issues with treatment plants. Announced in 2016, Irish Water proposes upgrading the Vartry water treatment plant after supplies were identified by the Environmental Protection Agency as being at risk of failing to meet the requirements of national safe drinking water standards. As part of the project, supply to seven existing water supply zones will be rationalised with individual sources and treatment plants decommissioned, and a single source of supply from the Vartry water treatment plant will be established. Planning, design, engineering, environmental and communications services consultancy RPS Group commissioned the LiDAR survey from Bluesky to fully understand the topography of the region. The data was used to assess route and pressure control options as a result of high pressures in the trunks mains. Three alternative route options were assessed to determine the most favourable, including two alternative trunk main routes and relocation of the Rathdrum Reservoir. The Bluesky LiDAR data was also used to enhance and supplement topographical surveys and culvert information collected by RPS engineers. In line with planning system and flood risk management guidelines, published by the Office of Public Works and the Department of Environment Heritage and Local Government, RPS undertook a flood risk assessment to support the planning application for the project. The Bluesky and RPS survey data were used to create a hydraulic model developed in Infoworks ICM (Integrated Catchment Modelling), used to calculate flood levels for different levels of risk, which was in turn used to develop a flood extents map. Page 10
  11. 11. Digital Water as a Driver for Circular Economy Circular economy approaches in the water sector are ripe for growth and rapidly emerging digital technologies are making that possible. Ahead of BlueTech Forum 2018: Managing Water Risks in Circular Economy, several industry leaders expressed their views on this emerging trend to Divia Inna, client relations manager at BlueTech Research. Ralph Exton, chief marketing officer, Suez - Water Technologies & Solutions, who will lead a round-table dedicated to digital water at BlueTech Forum, outlines the importance of the topic, “Digital technologies are key enablers of the circular economy. Gone are the days of linear thinking about water where the only thing you cared about was that water came into the plant, was cleaned to the specified standard and pushed out again.” Paul O’Callaghan, chief executive, BlueTech Research, believes that data technologies are key to improving the processes even outside of the water industry. “What we are seeing now is joined up thinking. Digital is making each individual part smarter, whether that’s ultra-filtration, membrane cleaning cycles or coagulant dosing in sludge de-watering. “As a result the system is becoming smarter too. And not just the water system, in an industrial setting it makes the entire manufacturing process more efficient.” Emilio Tenuta, vice president, corporate sustainability, at Ecolab agrees that digital technologies deliver the timely change to industry. “Water is a finite resource and conservation alone isn’t going to get us where we need to go. We have to develop technologies with smart sensors and devices that allow us to monitor and continually control systems so we can drive performance, optimise costs and manage water in a way that increases local resiliency.” Tenuta adds, “Digital approaches are key to closing the 40% freshwater supply-demand gap in the world. Smart technologies enable rapid evaluation and analysis of billions of data points per year that could not be measured previously.” Recognising opportunities Luckily, there is a US$4.5 trillion opportunity in the circular economy, according to the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, and water is a key component. But it is often not considered in discussions about the circular economy. InSight, an asset performance management (APM) solution from SUEZ, collects and analyses data from throughout the water treatment process. In addition to monitoring activities that can help prevent water loss, APM technologies like InSight provide enhanced visibility into an entire operation and help uncover new ways to save water and energy, lessening the environmental impact of a plant and enabling the adoption of a circular economy approach. Ecolab has pioneered remote monitoring and control systems, such as its 3D Trasar technology, which continuously responds to water and system stresses to help industry manage the quality challenges of different water sources. For example, in working with a Microsoft data centre in San Antonio, Texas, Nalco Water’s 3D Trasar technology enabled the site to reliably use recycled water, avoiding the use of 220 million litres of freshwater. Data science company Microbe Detectives has advanced the technology by using DNA sequencing to expose water quality information that has not previously been readily available. The company’s microbial analysis technique comes directly from the human genome project and presents an extraordinary specialisation for water and wastewater applications. “We’re disrupting the whole landscape,” says chief executive John Tillotson who will present the company’s technology in the innovation showcase at BlueTech Forum. “We’re combining DNA and computational technology with deep expertise in water to digitise microbial dark matter in water systems, 99% of which is not measurable with current standard test methods – it’s a huge leap. “Our DNA database is specialised for water microbiomes. When we do the sequencing we are comparing the data that gets generated to known information in our database to see where we have a positive match for thousands of microbes in a single test.” The technology can bring numerous benefits to water processing and analytics, with optimisation of anaerobic digestion and biological nutrient removal of wastewater being current areas of research and rapid identification of potentially lethal pathogens like legionella in drinking water in the near future, In a historically under-explored market, circular economy opportunities are everywhere and the numerous digital technologies entering the market can help capture them. BlueTech Forum will help delegates navigate this fast-changing and rapidly-growing arena with expert technical and market advice and face-to- face contact with the entrepreneurs developing these game-changing technologies. Page 11
  12. 12. Article: Assessing The Effectiveness Of Leak-Seeking Satellites Central Arkansas Water (CAW) is a metropolitan water system serving a population of 450,000. There are 135,000 residential, commercial, and industrial metered customers in Pulaski, Saline, and Grant counties, covering 530 square miles. CAW delivers an average of 62 MGD. The Central Arkansas Water system contains 2,500 miles of pipe, of which approximately 600 miles, or 25 percent, is PVC. The primary source of supply is surface water from Lake Winona and Lake Maumelle. Non-revenue water (NRW) loss is estimated to be 10 percent. It is a well-managed system with NRW lower than average. CAW has an Infrastructure Leakage Index of 2.5 and an “A” rating on the International Leakage Performance Category classification. CAW has several employees who are trained to find background leaks; however, currently there is no full-time proactive program to find these background leaks. CAW is a progressive agency that has implemented innovative programs in the past. Central Arkansas has a program to replace all known or discovered lead service lines system-wide. The utility has a proactive program to replace galvanized pipe and is using its own directional boring machine to replace over 600,000 linear feet of 2-inch diameter pipe. CAW was a partner in WRF (Water Research Foundation) Project 4642, “Fostering Innovation Within Water Utilities,” which developed guidance resources for utilities sectors that want to embrace innovation in their organizations. They are also using GPS to geolocate all water meters for (future) reverse customer system alerts and notifications. Terry Bice, CAW’s director of distribution, was named Water Manager of the Year by Arkansas Water Works and Water Environment Association in 2017. In order to identify the background leaks that contribute significantly to NRW, CAW partnered with Utilis to triage the distribution system in order to locate the most likely leak locations. How It Works Utilis uses L-band radar satellite imagery to identify likely leak locations. Radar (radio detection and ranging) is an object-detection system that uses electromagnetic waves in the radio or microwave domain to determine the range, angle, or velocity of objects. Radar signals are reflected especially well by materials of considerable electrical conductivity — most notably by wet ground. The satellite radar signals illuminate the area of interest, and the reflected images are bounced back and collected by the satellite. These images can be processed to omit the noise and separate out the particular signs of potable water underground. The Utilis service detects the result of leaks — wet soil — as opposed to the leak itself. The founder of the company, created in Israel in 2013, was interested in using electromagnetic waves to sense for different phenomena on Earth: infrared spectrum for analysing flora phenotyping, short-wave infrared for temperature measurement, and multi-spectral sensors for air pollution monitoring. Microwaves are the method of choice when searching for water due to its sensitivity to materials with high dielectric constants. The algorithm to interpret the reflected images from the satellite was developed, and a commercially available product was created in late 2015 and has since been implemented worldwide. Utilis has North American offices in San Diego, CA, and has partners in the European Union, Asia, and South America. The company holds a U.S. patent for a System and Method of Underground Water Detection, and has won various innovation challenges and contests. Such honours include the Aquatech Innovation Award in 2017 in Amsterdam, the Imagine H2O 2017 Water Data Challenge, and the Fast Company Most Innovative Company of 2018. Figure 1: Area of Interest Figure 2: Synthetic Aperture Radar Page 12
  13. 13. The Proving Ground This project’s goal was to assess the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of the satellite leak detection service provided by Utilis in conjunction with best boots- on-the-ground (BOTG) practices as defined by CAW and Utilis. The area selected for the study covers the Little Rock gravity supply zone. CAW regularly conducts proactive leak detection; however, the most time is spent responding to customer calls or pressure reduction reports. The deliverable from Utilis is a target map of findings, or likely leak locations. It is then dependent upon the BOTG leak detection crews to verify and locate the leaks through traditional acoustic and correlating methodologies. The BOTG inspectors are directed to the high-potential target areas, rather than inspecting the entire system. Results On December 14, 2017, Utilis delivered 156 findings over 747 miles of pipe using a satellite image taken on November 28, 2017. Of those 156 findings, a total 64, or 41 percent, were inspected by BOTG crews. Thirty-six leaks were found in 11 days of field inspection, an average of 3.3 leaks per day. This is a significant improvement over what was typical — one leak per day found per BOTG crew — when following the traditional methodology. The satellite triage of the system allows for the BOTG to be deployed to very specific areas, usually less than 5 percent of the total system length, to maximize the leaks found per time in the field. Of the 36 leaks identified in this project, 14 were found on pipe mains, six on service lines, and 16 on the customer side of the meter. Seven locations inspected as part of this work yielded suspect leaks — those that could be acoustically heard but not correlated and verified conclusively. Six of the target sites identified by Utilis yielded two leaks. The joint Utilis/CAW effort produced 0.56 leaks per site visit. In addition, work orders were opened for an additional eight to 10 suspected house line leaks. Those suspected leaks identified by the satellite triage are not included in this report. Over 100 projects have been completed by Utilis in 2016 and 2017 around the world. The results obtained at CAW are within the range of similar sites such as the East Bay Municipal Utility District (Oakland, CA), Mitrovica (Kosovo), Albstadt (Germany), and Yorkshire Water (UK). All sites showed a significant improvement over the typical leak detection rate using a traditional approach. Utilis uses results from all of these projects as input into its database to improve analytics and product performance. Bojan Ristovski, the managing director of Aquasave Ltd. who managed the Mitrovica project, says that the “efficiency paired with the capability of scanning an entire network multiple times per year will definitely allow utilities to reduce their water loss significantly more than with the traditional approach.” Program Requirements A critical part of the Utilis technique is to follow the best practices developed for the leak inspection program. Key items of the best practices include: • Codify the definitions of leaks, suspect leaks, and all quiet locations. • BOTG team must be trained. • The entire buffer area around the finding target must be inspected. • BOTG leak crew must utilize all listening locations within the target area. • All information collected during inspection should be documented. A team randomly searching for leaks by walking the entire pipeline can inspect about 3 miles of pipe per day. To verify the CAW-provided pipe system area of interest (747 miles), it would take approximately 250 working days (more than a year). The CAW team verified an average of eight findings per day pursuant to the best practices methodology during this study period. To verify the 747 miles of pipe with 156 findings in this area, it would take 20 working days for one team (about a month). The efficiency of this programmatic approach is evident based on the limited number of BOTG field crew days that need to be spent in order to find leaks Figure 3: Overlay with utility data Figure 4: Target map of findings Page 13
  14. 14. compared to traditional methodologies. Following this program can increase the efficiency of the BOTG crews by almost 400 percent. Four times as many leaks can be found with the same crew resources. When using the traditional, walking-the-line approach to leak detection, it would take more than 10 times the crew level of effort to inspect the entirety of the system as compared to the triage methodology. This innovative programmatic approach to leak detection using satellite imagery system triage and best practices BOTG leak inspection methodologies can: • Reduce the cost of finding leaks. • Increase the speed at which the leaks are found. • Identify customer- and utility-side leaks. • Minimize BOTG crew labour with better results. • Reduce background NRW levels. Figure 5: Target location or the prospective leak site Figure 6: Utilis/CAW findings map About the Author Paul Gagliardo, MPH, PE, is a strategic-thinking technical leader with diversified experience in public and private utilities, government, public works, engineering consulting, technology startups, innovation validation, and business development. He has more than 35 years of experience in developing, validating, and deploying new water-related technologies. Paul holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Union College and a master’s degree in public health from San Diego State University. He is also a registered engineer in the state of California. Tahmo gets access to IBM super computing power for rainfall modelling in Africa Professor Nick van de Giesen of Delft University of Technology received an IBM Technology & Data grant in the form of free super computing power and weather data. The grant supports Van de Giesen’s initiative to install hydro-meteorological monitoring stations in sub-Saharan Africa – one every 30 km. The Trans-African Hydro-Meteorological Observatory (TAHMO) initiative with its planned 20,000 low cost and robust weather stations, is to help the continent improve the understanding of water availability and to improve food production and harvest predictions. Access to crowd-sourced computing power The IBM grant allows TAHMO to use crowd-sourced computing power through World Community Grid and weather data from The Weather Company, which are provided by IBM as part of its Corporate Citizenship program. The Weather Company provides customized weather information to global commodity traders via its industry-leading WSI Trader website. In return for this support, TAHMO will publish its African weather data publicly, thereby enabling the global community to benefit from and build upon their findings. Rainfall modelling in Africa According to professor Van de Giesen Africa is in urgent need of much more detailed rainfall modelling. ‘African rain storms are erratic and vary strongly from place to place, while many Africans rely on rain for their livelihood.’ Van de Giesen: ‘If we want to come to grasps with rain in Africa, we have to be able to make very detailed calculations of the atmosphere. Such calculations would not be possible with standard computers but IBM’s World Community Grid makes this possible.’ Van de Giesen suggests to divide the continent into many small areas, each area sufficiently small to be calculated by a single computer, so that rainfall throughout Africa can be determined with the necessary detail. Page 14
  15. 15. Feature Article: Maintaining electro-magnetic flow meters in wastewater When somebody thinks of a close-pipe flow meter they first think of electro-magnetic flow meters and don’t go much further. Of course if you think of it there are so many more types of flow meters that measure on closed pipes on wastewater but probably the second most common flow meters in use in the wastewater flow measurement after the use of level based flow techniques is the electro-magnetic flow meter. They are quite often seen as a fit a forget technology and this can be the case but how do you ensure that the flow reading you are getting is accurate especially when it comes to wastewater. So what are the basics of ensuring electro-magnetic flow meter are accurate and how does wastewater make things slightly different. To start off with when electro-magnetic flow meters are made in the factory they are calibrated against a flow calibration rig. After each and every flow meter is built it is calibrated on the calibration rig and the quality and accuracy of the flow meter is partly due to the well practised manufacturing methods but is also due to the care that is taken in establishing the calibration and the calibration factors that are used to test the instrument. An example of this is the flow calibration rigs run by ABB in Stonehouse in Gloucestershire, UK. Their Large Flow Laboratory is UKAS- accredited, to a maximum flow of 2700 l/s. The laboratory is served by two large 909 l/s and two small 454 l/s pumps for parallel operation, providing a maximum throughput of 2700 l/s at 2 bar (29 psi) pressure. The combined power consumption at 2000 l/s is 1032 kW. The water is circulated continuously from a main sump holding approximately 1,000,000 litres (264,000 US gallons). The sump is equipped with de-aeration chambers to remove entrained air from the water. The primary measurement device used is a 762 mm (30 in.) meter prover loop, calibrated to BS EN ISO 7278-2 1996. This prover loop is used to calibrate the 4 Transfer Standard streams consisting of 150, 350, 400 and 450 mm (6, 14, 16 and 18 in.) MagMaster flowmetering systems. The prover loop is a volumetric calibration device comprising a pipe section of a known volume of 32,227.250 litres containing a polyurethane proving sphere. The sphere is approximately 3 % larger than the pipe section, providing a good interference fit to eliminate leakage past the sphere. The sphere is introduced or ‘launched’ into the flow of water from the meter in calibration and propelled through the prover pipe by the differential pressure across the sphere. Detector switches mounted on the prover pipe walls, a fixed distance apart, enable the sphere travel time to be measured. The volume of water passed between the switches is known. The process is repeated at different flow rates, in both forward and reverse directions, across the range of each individual stream, thus setting the primary measurement that the transfer meters are adjusted to, if required. The uncertainty of measurement for the transfer standard meters must be less than 0.1 % of actual measurement. The calibration repeatability of the prover is achieved by performing 2 or more consecutive runs within <0.02 % of the average base volume. A third run (or more if necessary) is carried out at varying flowrates to verify the absence of a consistent leak. What we can see from this is the manufacturing of electro-magnetic flow meter is run to very fine tolerances and out of the factory the device is an incredibly accurate measurement device. So what affects the accuracy once it gets into the field. Firstly the key is in the installation and ensuring that there is sufficient upstream and downstream dimensions allow for any flow pattern interferences to be minimised. Typically this has been five upstream pipe diameters and two downstream on a normal pipe. If there are any serious disturbances in the pipe, such as a valve - especially a modulating gate or butterfly valve then this should be extended to 15 upstream pipe diameters and 5 downstream. Of course this should be checked and appropriate pipe diameters used. All of this does depend upon the technology that is used as some of the manufacturing companies do have models that can cope with zero up and down stream pipe diameters. Figure 1:ABB Large Flow Rig at Stonehouse in Gloucestershire, UK - schematic (above) photograph (below). This laboratory is one of the few UKAS Accredited Flow Laboratories Page 15
  16. 16. Taking installation aside and making the presumption that the electro-magnetic flow meter has been installed correctly, with the right pipe diameters and as required the fluid contact rings installed to minimise electrical interference what is next? The next factor is checking that the meter is working correctly and if it is connected to a telemetry system whether it is scaled correctly with the meter on site agreeing with the telemetry system. The majority of this work should be completed at least annually by instrumentation technicians. The minimum checks that are undertaken are: • Transmission check to ensure that the flow readings that are being outputted to the telemetry system match at both ends. In the UK at least the majority of time the signal is transmitted using an analogue loop scaled between 4-20mA with 0L/s at 4mA and the maximum flow at 20mA. • Electronic Verification check should be undertake to ensure that the electronics of the flow meter are working within factory calibration. Most of the electro-magnetic flow meter manufacturers have their own proprietary hardware of software • Secondary flow verification in an ideal world should also be undertaken although practicalities sometimes prevent this from being undertaken. This can be pick up other problems, depending its been performed with things such as pipe fouling. It is this last point about pipe fouling that is of particular concern in the wastewater industry and it is something that is being studied extensively within the water industry and at the moment there are mixed results indicating that in certain situations the accuracy of results can be badly affected and in others not so much. So what is exactly the problem? If you take a 100mm nominal bore flow meter with as little as 4mm of surface deposition the flow meter can over-read by 8%. That level of deposition in the pipe is relatively low so it can become a problem. An example of this is in figure 2 where an electro-magnetic flow meter had been installed on a final effluent line for a five year period before it was cleaned. In this particular case the joins in the pipe can still be seen and so it is more than likely in this case that the meter accuracy was not being affected significantly by any fouling within the pipe. However this particular case was on the final effluent line where the wastewater has been treat- ed and is relatively clean. The question is whether this is still the case on inlet pipework where the wastewater has not been treated. In figure 3 we see an example of a much bigger flow meter from the inlet of a works with flow passing down through the flow meter under gravity which is perhaps the worst possible place that the flow meter could be installed. In this particular case it is also downstream of a chemical dosing point that is adding iron salts to the flow for primary dosing for phosphorus removal. In this case the ferric salts in a five year period had not only fouled the pipe to an extent where it initially was over-reading but had gone so far as to foul the pipe to the point where the signal degraded and the flow meter was actually significantly under-reading. The fouling had got to the point where approximately half the pipe diameter had been blocked. Testing undertaken since the cleaning indicate that the rate of fouling after just one year was 11mm. From this it has been taken that the flow meter needs to be cleaned on a yearly basis to maintain an appropriate level of accuracy. But is this always the case? Is the wastewater industry going to be cleaning electro-magnetic flow meters on the inlet of treatment works on a yearly basis. The answer is know as this is one particular case and there are more potential situations where, although the flow meter is on the inlet it doesn’t need to be cleaned at all. In figure 4 we see another electro-magnetic flow meter on the inlet of a treatment works where it is located on a pumped rising main. The flow meter diameter is exactly the same as the flow meter in figure 2 with the exception that the flow meter has been in-situ for a total of 12 years. As can be seen in the CCTV survey of the pipes the pipe-welds can clearly be seen and so it can be concluded that because of the action of the pumps that there is in fact a self-cleaning velocity that has been established at this particular site and even after 12 years the affect of fouling on the accuracy of the flow meter is negligible. This has also been seen on other pumped mains were a time of flight flow meter was being used on a larger bore pipe and the actual level of fouling was next to nothing. From this we can see that there is confusion as to where it might be necessary to instigate a cleaning regime for fouling on an electro-magnetic flow meter and where it isn’t. The truth is that, on wastewater, which can Figure 2: CCTV from a EM-Flow Meter after 5 years Figure 3: CCTV from a inlet flow meter after 5 years Figure 4: CCTV from an inlet pumped rising main Page 16
  17. 17. be a medium which is subject to heavy fouling the question has not been fully answered as yet and further study is necessary. However the results so far indicate some general trends where it is definitely necessary to instigate a cleaning programme and other situations where it is not. As can be seen in Table 1 the vast majority of sites don’t suffer from a significant amount of fouling even after 13 years but 45% of the sites do suffer from a degree of fouling that is likely to significantly affect the accuracy of the flow measurement. Site Degree of fouling Bore Size Description Time in Service Comments Site 1 Heavy 200 Significant sludge build up 10 Years Inlet & Gravity Site 2 Heavy 300 Significant Fe sludges & heavily obscured 4 Years Inlet & Gravity Site 3 Moderate 80 Some biological growth 12 Years Site 4 Moderate 100 Some sludge, some plant build up 13 Years Site 5 Moderate 100 Some inclusions 5 Years FE Flow Site 6 Moderate 150 Some fluffy sludge build up 13 Years Site 7 Moderate 150 Some biological growth 13 years FE Flow Site 8 Moderate 200 Obscured CCTV caused by fouling 13 Years Site 9 Moderate 200 Silt and some floating debris 13 Years FE Flow Site 10 Moderate 200 Some biological growth and sediment 13 Years FE Flow Site 11 Moderate 250 Some biological growth 4 years Site 12 Moderate 250 Small levels of biological growth 13 Years Site 13 Moderate 250 Some biological growth 11 Years FE Flow Site 14 Moderate 250 Moderate biological growth 13 Years FE Flow Site 15 Moderate 300 Some biological growth 5 Years Site 16 Moderate 300 Some biological growth and sediment 13 Years FE Flow Site 17 Moderate 400 Biological Growth 11 Years Site 18 Moderate 400 Some biological growth - no siltation 4 Years Site 19 Moderate 700 Some biological growth 4 years Site 20 Low 50 No significant debris 13 Years Site 21 Low 100 No significant debris 4 years Site 22 Low 100 No significant debris 7 years Site 23 Low 100 No significant debris 4 years Pumped recirc Site 24 Low 100 No significant debris 3 Years FE D/S of Filters Site 25 Low 150 Some build up - meter replaced New Site 26 Low 150 No significant debris 13 Years FE Flow Site 27 Low 200 Some floating debris 13 Years Site 28 Low 200 No significant debris 13 Years Site 29 Low 200 Some biological growth 13 Years Site 30 Low 200 No significant debris 11 Years In the study there were around 45 sites so far and although the results are not completely conclusive it is fair to come to the following indicative conclusions • Where there is an electro-magnetic flow on the inlet that is gravity flow it is highly likely that a regular cleaning routine to remove any fouling will be required. Where this is influenced by iron salts then there is a definite need for a cleaning programme. Consider moving the iron dosing to downstream of the flow meter • Where there is an electro-magnetic flowmeter on the inlet that is on a pumped line then it is highly unlikely that a cleaning programme will need to be put in place as the pump action is likely to provide an effective scouring of the inlet pipe. • Where there is a small bore electro-magnetic flow meter (200mm and below) on the final effluent line it is unlikely to need a cleaning programming before it needs to be replaced whether it be a pumped line or not • Where there is a medium to large bore flow meter that discharges by gravity and has a low typical velocity the electro-magnetic flow meter is likely to need a cleaning programme to be put into place • Where there is a medium to large bore flow that discharges by a pumped main then it is unlikely to need an electro-magnetic flow meter cleaning programme to be put into place These conclusion at the current time are indicative and in reality the findings do need to be checked as well as other areas where the risk of fouling can be reduced investigated including the potential of using different liner materials which are more suited to minimising the risk of electro-magnetic flow meter fouling. When electro-magnetic flow meters were first released onto the market they were seen as a fit & forget technology. Of course no instrument is fit and forget and in order to ensure that the data that we collect from our instruments we have to ensure that they are correctly installed and maintained even if we can’t see them. On closed pipe flow measurement this applies to all of the technologies in use and not just electro-magnetic flow meters. The maintenance required is particularly onerous in wastewater due to propensity to foul instruments. What the research has shown to date is that in some situations electro-magnetic flow meters will record accurately for many years with little intervention. However it also shows that being aware of the risk factors of where an electro-magnetic flow meter might need some increased maintenance primarily due to fouling will help operators to identify where an increased level of maintenance is required. If this can be done before a meter is installed then it is something that design engineers can incorporate into their designs moving forward. Page 17
  18. 18. Article: Managing infrastructure presents a growing digital challenge Digitalisation and the increasing amount of data that water companies have at their disposal is transforming how they operate. This information is being used to shape and streamline usage and maintenance procedures, monitor flood or pollution risks and identify operational performance issues, to comply with increasingly stringent regulations and higher customer expectations. Robotics and AI driven automation are also starting to play a part with several water companies creating innovation hubs, technology shop windows and digital sandboxes to demonstrate how these new technologies can be incorporated. These are often driven by data and require large quantities of this to derive trends and inform artificial learning. The sheer volume of information this creates brings management challenges and concerns over data security. In addition, the speed in which technology evolves means that systems agreed at the conception of a new infrastructure asset are often outdated by the time they are completed and put into use. A new approach to managing data Implementing a comprehensive digital asset management (DAM) programme can help address these issues. But, this is still a relatively new concept for utility providers and the skills needed to deliver such an approach are in short supply. This means there is a distinct lack of understanding within the industry towards how data can and should be used, and there’s often confusion among management teams over where responsibility for it lies. While information may be collected, there is often uncertainty over its ownership, which creates inconsistencies with how it is analysed and reported. As a result, there is currently no set format or ‘language’ for classifying data across the UK’s twelve water companies, or even within individual asset portfolios. Manually reconfiguring information is highly time consuming and expensive, for both utilities providers and the governing bodies they report to. This is particularly pertinent for Ofwat’s five-yearly price review exercise, which involves collating a huge range of forecasting data from each water company to set pricing. Any inefficiency here is detrimental as ultimately, this is taxpayer’s money that could be used to fund infrastructure improvements. Without consistency in how utility providers format this information, it is almost impossible to achieve the full efficiency savings that can be found by linking data sets and creating a comprehensive digital overview of an asset’s operation. This lack of ownership and consistency also poses more serious threats. Bringing such quantities of information online creates security challenges and water infrastructure is a potential target for cybercrime, considering the potential to disrupt water supply or tamper with quality. As legislation is passed such as the Network and Information Security Directive (NISD) and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), alongside the trend for data management focuses on increasing accessibility, it’s important to ensure that there are the appropriate measures in place and that companies fully understand its security needs. To solve these challenges and extract the full value of digital analytics, there must first be a shift in industry attitudes towards how data is considered. There needs to be consistency and a commitment to treating data in line with the same regulations and respect that physical infrastructure assets are given. The principles set out in BS1192 already establish clear guidelines for the management, analysis and exchange of data relating to any building or infrastructure project, but these are best practice recommendations and not compulsory. An industry-wide commitment to adhere to these guidelines would ensure consistency in the way that information is collected, stored and analysed. This would greatly improve security and bring efficiency savings which can be channelled back into improving infrastructure to benefit providers, regulators and consumers alike. Building digital skills Once data is properly considered as an asset class, building a stronger digital culture will be a key next step. Developing technical skills within utilities companies is essential. Training programmes need to be established to create a new generation of data scientists and technical officers who fully understand the value of data and how to collate, analyse and manage it. Building data teams from the ground up will also help determine ownership over information and drive digital understanding across the industry. Where skills need to be outsourced, every effort should be made to fully embed outside teams into this culture. For example, we have worked with Yorkshire Water for over 12 years, with teams from both companies operating out of the same office to manage and improve performance across its 1,200 telemetry assets. Once these skilled teams are in place, attention can then shift to introducing more efficient DAM processes that boost consistency and cohesivity across data sets, allowing more to be linked and analysed. At Irish Water for example, as part of the national Water Industry Operating Framework (WIOF), we are currently developing tools for large-scale automation of data validation, transformation and onboarding. This will allow information to be collated from individual county assets into a single, national capability and help target a €1.3 billion saving. Digital transformation and data driven decision making will play a key part in achieving this. The potential for efficiency savings that these new innovations will bring are huge and illustrate the central role that digital asset management should play in the sector. As we move further into an ‘always on’ culture, we expect data demands to increase markedly. By making sure we have a commitment to consistency and a digital culture in place now, water companies could deliver a more efficient, reliable utility at a reduced cost to the taxpayer. About the Author Mark Kaney is a business leader with over 15 years’ experience in the utilities industry. A proven track record of success in the sector focused in the areas of Strategic change, Portfolio delivery, managing business risk and Regulatory Interfaces He has a high degree of technical competence in the areas of programme and project management, investment prioritisation, Client Management, effective communications planning, risk modelling and Asset Management. Page 18
  19. 19. Article: Beyond The Buzzword: How Utility Operators Can Use Big Data Big Data is more than a marketing buzzword. It’s become be an essential tool for helping utility operators prioritize capital investments, manage network assets, and provide a higher level of service to customers. The term “Big Data” is everywhere lately, from industries like healthcare, IT, and finance to water and wastewater. Data collection itself, of course, is nothing new for utilities. The vast majority of water and wastewater utilities in the United States are automated within their treatment plants, and utility operators have long used data to optimize plant operations, water quality, and energy consumption. So how is Big Data different, and why should utility operators care? The Industrial Internet of Things Big Data refers to the massive amounts of data and information generated and collected in the digital age, the inability to process that data through traditional means, and the potential to apply that data for solving critical business and industry challenges. The rise of Big Data has been accelerated by the rapid adoption of all sorts of wireless communication devices, sensors, and remote data collection systems as these solutions have become more readily available and their costs have steadily come down. Along with greater accessibility and lower costs has come a considerable global investment in the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), a system of physical devices with the ability to collect, share, and exchange data across wireless networks. The research firm Gartner, Inc. estimates that there were 8.4 billion connected devices in use worldwide in 2017, with a projected 20.4 billion by 2020 (Source: Gartner). In the water and wastewater industry, the growing number of remotely connected sensors and devices in the field has meant a huge increase in the type and amount of data available to utility and plant operators. Water utilities making the switch from standard meters to smart metering, for example, have seen an enormous increase in the amount of information coming from their meters. Instead of a once-a-month reading, utilities now have continuous, wireless feeds from every meter on the network, sending data back from the point of delivery, and giving operators a near real-time view into conditions outside the plant. With this increase in information comes a new challenge: What do utilities and plant operators do with all this data once they have it? Systems that collect, report, and make sense of Big Data provide the answer to this question and offer significant benefits for utilities and their customers. Real-time data collection can help water utilities respond to small leaks, significantly reduce non-revenue water (NRW) losses, prevent major pipe bursts, avoid service disruptions, and better engage their customers around issues related to water use and conservation. For wastewater treatment plants, data from combined and sanitary sewer overflow (CSO/SSO) monitoring systems can be used to alert operators of wet-weather conditions, prevent overflows, and avoid regulatory penalties and fines. Eliminating Blind Spots and Finding the Needle in a Growing Haystack While utilities have begun to deploy smart meters at the point of delivery (or, in the case of wastewater utilities, sensors at critical points their collection systems), most utilities in the United States still lack visibility across their distribution and collection networks that sit between their treatment plants and the properties and customers they serve. IIoT solutions give utilities a new way to eliminate those blind spots by making wireless remote monitoring more accessible, more affordable, and easier for utilities to deploy. Wireless remote monitoring and data collection can give utility operators critical insight into what’s going on underground, from pipe leaks, breaks, and pressure transients on the water distribution side to CSOs and SSOs due to blockages and wet-weather events on the wastewater treatment and collection side. The continuous data collected and transmitted by these sensors presents utilities with a large and growing amount of data. Their new challenge is not only to manage and secure the data in these systems, but also to make sense of it — to find the needle in the growing haystack of information and use it to improve operations. This requires software with analytical tools that can manage the Big Data, and more importantly, provide analytics and tools that deliver actionable information to utilities so they aren’t buried under volumes of data. Examples of these types of solutions are becoming common across the water and wastewater industry. For example, one utility deployed wireless pressure recorders in a small part of the water distribution network where the utility was concerned about leaks and breaks. Within a few days of installation, the recorders alerted the utility to a quick pressure drop in a particular area. A crew was sent out to investigate but failed to detect a leak through their visual inspection and reported “no leak found.” Within 48 hours, the same wireless pressure recorders detected a sudden and much larger drop in pressure, which turned out to be a major pipe burst. Customers began calling to report water in the streets. In this instance, the wireless pressure recorders had collected data continuously, providing a key alert when — and only when—there was an issue the utility needed to be aware of and its location. The system’s automated alerts preceded customer reports of a leak, providing a perfect example of how the IIoT, Big Data, and analytics could have helped this utility catch and repair the leak while it was still small, preventing the major pipe burst and the associated additional damage, water loss, repair costs, and liabilities. In addition to wireless pressure, flow, and level monitoring for water and wastewater systems, new wireless leak detection technology uses fixed acoustic sensors to continuously capture and correlate data using cloud software and analytics, helping utilities identify and reduce leakage and NRW loss to realize financial, operational, and environmental benefits. By capturing, processing, and analysing enormous volumes of data, these systems allow utilities to identify even very small leaks and pinpoint their location to within a meter of where they occur. Wireless pressure sensors can also be used to capture water hammer, or pressure transient, events that lead to weakening of pipes and infrastructure. With these, Big Data gets even bigger, with some pressure sensors analysing 30 to 100+ pieces of information per second during a water hammer event, tracking rapid spikes and drops in pressure that can damage water infrastructure. Page 19
  20. 20. In the absence of monitoring equipment and associated Big Data, utilities are often left to rely on visual observations or react to customer complaints, with no insight into the cause or location of the problem. By instead using Big Data to identify current or potential trouble spots in the water or wastewater network, utilities are able to save money on maintenance, repairs, and avoided property damage, improve environmental and regulatory compliance, and better use the dollars allocated for infrastructure investment by addressing areas of highest risk based on actual criticality, not just system age. Improving Customer Service Today’s consumers are environmentally aware and increasingly concerned about the environmental impact of residential, commercial, and industrial water use, the effects of climate change on water supplies, and the frequency and severity of extreme weather events and associated impacts of harmful wastewater discharges back into the environment. Consumers expect their public water and wastewater utilities to be responsible and resilient in the face of incidents such as flooding, drought, or water shortages, and responsive and communicative about planned maintenance, public health concerns, water-use restrictions, and other service-related issues. As utilities raise water and sewer rates to fund deferred infrastructure investments, consumers have a correspondingly higher expectation of the level of customer service provided. To help utilities meet these expectations, wireless remote monitoring solutions for water distribution and wastewater collection systems continuously gather and analyse Big Data, giving operators the ability to be proactive and prescriptive instead of reactive about operating their utilities to provide the highest quality of service to their customers. Big Data is here to stay, and the ability to manage and interpret growing volumes of data is an essential skill for modern utilities and their operators. The good news is that the tools, software, and analytics exist today to make it easier to continuously find the important needles in the growing haystacks of information, allowing utilities to provide more sustainable and resilient infrastructure, improve operations and environmental compliance, reduce costs, and improve customer service. Big Data … big results. Nivus launch Long-Term Flow Metering with integrated Data Transmission Nivus, a leading company in area velocity flow meters, has this month launched their mobile NivuFlow Mobile 750 flowmeter was specially developed for wastewater applications in part filled canals as well as in part filled and full pipes. A range of new pipe and wedge sensors featuring compact dimensions is ideal for the use in smaller flumes. The patented cross correlation technology determines the currently prevailing flow profile in real time providing high accurate results. Measurement accuracy can be significantly increased by the parallel use of up to three flow velocity sensors. Accessories such as the NIVUS Pipe Profiler allow for reliable measurement results in part filled pipes starting at diameters of 150 mm even at very low flow levels The system can be operated for a very long time thanks to energy-efficient algorithms, performance-optimised sensors and the high capacity of the rechargeable battery. Given a five-minute measurement and recording cycle, the measurement can be continued for up to 250 days without the need to replace the battery. The battery can be replaced by the user very easily. A LTE modem with automatic transmission of readings and unit data via e-mail, FTP or to the NIVUS web portal is optionally available for the transmitter. Therefore, maintenance visits can be reduced to a minimum or can be planned in advance to save resources. The high protection class of IP68 for sensors and transmitter permit to use the system even under extreme conditions. Protection class IP67 is guaranteed even with the cover open. Parameters can be set and the transmitter can be operated wireless on site by using smartphone, tablet or notebook. This enables ergonomic and safe operation from within a protected area such as a vehicle even in poor weather conditions, direct sunlight or when accessibility is limited. Typical applications for the NivuFlow Mobile 750 are the determination of infiltration water, the verification of throttle equipment, precipitation discharge measurement or temporary measurements in wastewater networks in general. Page 20
  21. 21. Page 21 Conferences, Events, Seminars & Studies Conferences, Seminars & Events June 2018 Sensor & Data Driven Technologies for future water networks 6th June 2018 Hebden Bridge, UK Hosted by the Sensors for Water Interest Group America Water Works Association - ACE2018 11th - 14th June 2018 Mandalay Bay Conference Centre, Las Vegas, USA Hosted by the American Water Works Association July 2018 State of the Art of Wastewater Monitoring 4th July 2018 ABB Stonehouse, UK Hosted by the Sensors for Water Interest Group European Water & Wastewater Management Conference 17th - 18th July 2018 Manchester United Football Club, Manchester, UK Hosted by Aqua Enviro September 2018 Wastewater Exposition 12th- 13th September 2018 NEC Birmingham, UK Hosted by Prysm Environmental Ltd Data Quality 26th September 2018 Bletchley Park, UK Hosted by the Sensors for Water Interest Group WEFTEC 29th September - 3rd October 2018 New Orleans, USA Hosted by the Water Environment Federation November 2018 Water, Wastewater & Environmental Monitoring 21st-22nd November 2018 Telford, UK Hosted by International Labmate WIPAC Flow Forum @WWEM 21st November 2018 Telford, UK Hosted by International Labmate WIPAC Learning Zone @WWEM 21st-22nd November 2018 Telford, UK Hosted by International Labmate Conferences Coming Soon Sensor & Data Driven Technologies for Future Water Networks Where: Hebden Bridge When: 6th June 2018 The workshop aims to examine the role that water quality sensors (e.g. residual chlorine) and water property sensors (e.g. pressure) will play on the journey towards SMART water networks of the future. The water industry has taken some first steps on the journey, this workshop will explore the state of the art and look at what can be achieved now and in the near future. Topics to be discussed will include: • Practical issues associated with deploying sensors in networks • Moving data from the point of measurement to an analysis space • Case studies of current sensor usage with a view to predicting possible future benefits • A glimpse into the future of data analytics as applied to water quality in distribution networks • Emerging sensor technology for new parameters • Why are sensors not more widely deployed State of the art of wastewater monitoring Where: ABB Stonehouse, Gloucestershire When: 4th July 2018 With the development of the water industry into new ways of working such as advanced control of the wastewater system from network to treatment to river and concepts such as the Internet of Things there is a need for instrumentation to provide the data underpinning the whole concept of Water 4.0. In this SWIG workshop on the “State of the art of wastewater monitoring” we will look into some of the ways that current and new types of instrumentation can be used to support the digitisation of the Wastewater Industry. Data Quality Where: Bletchley Park, Buckinghamshire When: 26th September 2018 The Water Industry produces hundreds of millions of pieces of data everyday and with the proliferation of smart metering and concepts such as the Internet of Things this is set to dramatically increase. However there is also a need for this data to be correct to ensure that the decisions that are made from that data are made on the basis of the correct assumptions. In this SWIG workshop on “Data Quality” we will investigate potential sources of uncertainty in data quality as well as methods for ensuring the accuracy of data.
  22. 22. The 8th International Conference and Exhibition on water, wastewater and environmental monitoring WWEM2018 Supporting Trade Associations Network with Water Industry Experts... 21st - 22nd November Over 100 FREE workshops, over 140 Exhibitors and a focussed Conference. WWEM is the specialist event for monitoring, testing and analysis of water, wastewater and environmental samples. Tel: +44 (0)1727 858840 email: Follow us: @WWEM_Exhibition Visitors to WWEM will als o have FREE admission to the AQE Show WWEM 2018 Advert.indd 1 29/01/2018 16:50Page 22