04/13/2021 | Trends

Monitoring water networks digitally

Supply safety first

Checking drinking water reservoirs and networks manually is a time-consuming and inefficient job. Endress+Hauser delivers the right digital solution even for small and rural municipalities.

Like in every large community, water distribution is also important in the German city of Oberzent, close to Frankfurt am Main. There are several water springs, some of them even providing mineral water. Various small municipalities have joined to form the town of Oberzent, which has a total of 10,000 inhabitants, but is spread over an area almost three times the size of Manhattan, New York.

Top priority: safe water supply

Providing each of the town’s 19 districts reliably with water is therefore a top priority for the local water supplier. Four water masters make sure that the water supply network is running smoothly at all times. In the past, they spent a large portion of their workday driving around to the 19 facilities spread out over 165 km² to gather and process information for water treatment and storage – time they couldn’t spend on more important tasks.

Collecting data digitally

The municipality instructed Endress+Hauser to digitalise the water networks. Using the Netilion IIoT ecosystem, Endress+Hauser delivered a fully digital solution. Netilion provides all the basic data needed for creating and programming individual dash- boards that display the entire process of water treatment and storage. This is implemented in the online service Netilion Water Network Insights. Using this service, the water networks can be monitored as well as optimized while no leak goes undetected.

Even the lack of stable cellular service coverage in rural Germany could be overcome. A long-range wide area network (LoRaWAN) allows for secure wireless data transmission that needs little to no energy.

More time for more important things

From now on, the water masters can retrieve all relevant information on their smartphones, tablets and laptops: data from 35 flowmeters, 17 level meters, 7 pressure meters and 2 analysis panels for quality monitoring. Time-consuming daily visits to the reservoirs and water treatment stations are a thing of the past. The highly qualified experts can now use their time much more effectively ensuring a reliable water supply for the town of Oberzent.

Author

Pirmin Lickert

Pirmin Lickert studied electrical engineering at Cooperative State University Lörrach. Since 2019, he has been a Product Manager Automation Solutions at Endress+Hauser Germany.

pirmin.lickert[at]endress.com

 

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