Waternet, the internet of pipes

The impacts of population growth, ecological threats, and climate change will pose a risk to our freshwater resources. In Israel, a company called TakaDu designed a software using mathematical algorithms to detect and prevent leaks in water pipelines. Over time, smart sensors have been added pipes to monitor blockages, leaks, and weak points that result in waste. According to Little (2015), “Within a year of adopting the TaKaDu system, Unitywater saved more than 1 billion liters of water. That translated into savings of more than $2 million. The utility also reduced the time it takes to repair problems in its network by more than 60 percent (Little, 2015)” Therefore, improving the infrastructure of water management by working with utility companies in an innovative fashion.

The importance of a robust infrastructure in water management correlates to water consumption in countries. According to Kennedy et al. (2015), nonrevenue water use is high in many megacities, reaching more than 70% of total water consumption in Sao Paulo and Buenos Aires. Some of this loss may be the result of informal/illegal water withdrawals; other losses result from the poor state of infrastructure (2015, p. 5988). Therefore, it is important to have a reliable infrastructure in place monitor the use of fresh water, which will decrease the amount of freshwater being utilized in the future.

In the future, the use of sensors can be used as a prevention tool in public health. The water sensors can be used to detect future outbreaks and the spread of infectious diseases in the water. Early prevention can help to prevent pandemics, by saving lives and saving money in medical cost. Therefore, the urban innovation known as waternet, the internet of pipes, will improve our water management systems and fresh water consumption in the world.

 

References:

Little, A. (2015, January 8). Israel’s Water Ninja. Retrieved April18, 2016, fromhttp://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-01-08/takadu-helps-israel-be-a-most-efficient-water-manager

https://us130urbansustainability.files.wordpress.com/2016/01/kennedy-energy-material-flow-megacities-2015.pdf

World Economic Forum. (2015). Top Ten Urban Innovations

(Rep.). Retrieved April 18, 2016, from World Economic

Forum website:

http://www3.weforum.org/docs/Top_10_Emerging_Urban_I

nnovations_report_2010_20.10.pdf

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2 thoughts on “Waternet, the internet of pipes

  1. I think we as a nation need to start understanding the actual value of water. Being a rich nation, we are fortunate enough to have virtually constant access to water whenever we need it. Yet in other places around the world, people must travel miles in order to get the water they need for the day. We do not value water as much as we should, which is going to harm us more in the future. We are seeing conflicts around the world become more serious due to water scarcity, conflicts even occur due to water scarcity in the first place.

    If we do not value water as much as we should, we may allow ourselves to mistreat our valuable water resources, thus leading to water shortages nationwide.There needs to be an understanding that water is a very valuable source and must be treated that way. It is becoming more scare every year and will continue to do so as climate change continues.

    http://worldwater.org/water-conflict/

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  2. This was pretty interesting to me as a math and computer science major. You never think that math could be connected to monitoring water pipes, but the $2 million in savings speaks for itself! Hopefully more algorithms will be utilized in the future with the amount of data that is constantly being collected, and more prevention methods like this one will continue to solve sustainability problems.

    Like

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