The benefits of IoT and geospatial technology are getting well-deserved attention. This article highlights how innovative technologies are changing the traditional water utility industry.
The Future of Water Utilities
Every new technology brings changes to the core principles of the water industry. As a result, innovation in the water sector is an ongoing process that could be defined as a continuous cycle of finding, evaluating, and adopting innovation to improve customer service, provide cost-effective solutions, and operate more efficiently.
But the advantages of innovation are not just limited to the underlying technologies. The ability to implement smart technologies in the water sector has a substantial economic impact. Its most significant benefit is that it improves service quality and makes a better environment for people.
Data: The New Oil? Data, of course, plays a critical role in all the innovations in the water sector.
How IoT is Changing the Industry
No longer can a water utility rely on traditional tools for water asset management. Turning water utilities into smart, connected networks can ensure clean drinking water for our growing global population.
IoT sensors, embedded systems, and wireless technologies will help utilities meet the increasing demand for water and do so efficiently.
A variety of smart technologies use sensors. Software systems and connected devices allow the communication of data between various devices. These types of technologies are crucial to water utility companies and businesses to provide water that is safe for humans and maintaining the integrity of a company’s product or infrastructure.
Real-time IoT sensors are added to a water utility’s pipeline assets to track water pressure and monitor potential leaks. IoT combined with GIS can also enable a utility to gather important historical and present data to plan for the future.
IoT presents information at a granular level, giving important insights into individual assets and locations.
Benefits of Geospatial Technology
GIS has existed for almost 30 years and many sectors are increasingly using it, including public infrastructure, manufacturing, and energy. One of the most critical areas where it is used is water asset management.
The Canadian Centre for Architecture calls GIS “a big help” for mapping infrastructure. GIS maps play a vital role in digitizing water networks, especially in monitoring the health of pipes, reservoirs, and utilities. Plus, because GIS maps are up-to-date, you can use them to plan new water infrastructure projects and identify leakages and leaks faster.
While IoT zeros in on specifics, GIS gives an overall picture or visualization of data.
GIS and IoT together can provide a complete picture of a utility’s performance. Utility managers can use the resulting information to make high-quality strategic decisions with a high probability of success. Water managers can also use these technologies to improve service levels and improve customer satisfaction. The goal is to improve efficiency, reduce costs, improve quality of service, and improve operational effectiveness.
As cities continue to grow, infrastructure gets older, and the demand for water rises, it is becoming increasingly important to update our water management methods. Technologies such as real-time IoT sensors, GIS tools, and demand response tools provide utility companies with significant cost and energy savings in their day-to-day operations.
The future of water infrastructure will be reliant on innovative technologies. Water provides the essential infrastructure and ecosystem for life. It is also a critical economic driver and a vast source of energy. Yet, it is a resource that is threatened, both physically and environmentally. For example, a third of the world’s water supply is lost to leaks or evaporation on any day. With more innovative technologies in use, water utilities and humankind can conserve this precious resource.
Learn about Nobel Systems IoT and GIS data management tools: visit Nobel-Systems.com