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sewer flood monitoring 37south IOTA

First Sigfox enabled bollard. A case study to better monitor water outlets

Australia is the first country to have a solution to measure storm water outlets levels.

The solution designed by Melbourne Water is built inside a bollard. The first one has been installed to monitor a notorious stormwater pipe at Rosebud beach (on the Mornington Peninsula, Victoria) which is known to backup and cause flooding on local streets.

The solution to this problem is utilising the Internet of Things. It includes:

  • a Sigfox ready 37South Sentinel datalogger designed to last 10 years on battery,
  • a digital level sensor is attached at the base of the bollard and can monitor the water level going through the water outlet.
  • The data is sent via Sigfox network to a platform to first monitor the data and receive alerts.

Now, Melbourne Water is monitoring the drain via this connected bollard which feed readings back to an app in real time, eliminating the need for visual checks and improving response times.

The ultimate aim of the solution, after all water outlets are fitted with the bollards, is to better predict the water flow, and react faster in case of blockage, ensuring the water does not pool and eventually flood local roads, homes and businesses.

By better managing the potential water overflow before it happens, Melbourne Water can reduce the high cost of maintenance crews, who, until now would visually check the drains every few days to ensure they had not been clogged. Russell Riding, automation team leader, said “the technology was one example of Melbourne Water utilising the Internet of Things. The Internet of Things is all about connecting internet-enabled devices with everyday objects so they can send and receive data,” In this case it means being able to know when the pipe is getting choked up with sand thanks to hourly data which is easily accessed on any mobile phone or computer.”  Source: Melbourne Water News

Sigfox is the perfect fit for such an application: the solution requires very limited data (once every day to check level and battery functions and when there are alerts), simple set up, an ubiquitous network you can rely on, and most  importantly, battery powered for a very long battery life of 10+ years.

After monitoring water outlets, we are sure there are other projects in the pipe (no pun) for Melbourne Water to connect sewers and other assets to better manage that scarce resource that is water.

About Melbourne Water

Melbourne Water is wholly owned by the Victorian State Government. It manages Melbourne’s water supply catchments, sewage, rivers and major drainage systems throughout the Port Phillip and Westernport region.

About Thinxtra
Thinxtra is empowering the Internet of Things in Asia Pacific by deploying the world-leading Sigfox LPWA network as well as building a full eco-system of IoT solutions and services to enable the non-connected to connect, to increase productivity, accelerate decision making, improve quality of service and quality of life, and find more economical solutions to common problems.

Sigfox is the world’s leading provider of connectivity for the Internet of Things (IoT). The company has built a global network to connect billions of devices to the Internet while consuming as little energy as possible, as simply as possible. Sigfox’s unique approach to device-to-cloud communications addresses the three greatest barriers to global IoT adoption: cost, energy consumption, and global scalability.

PR Contact: Renald Gallis – VP Marketing +61 404 894 960 [email protected]

About Thinxtra

Thinxtra, Enabler of Massive IoT, connects physical assets with the digital world in the most energy efficient way, at scale, and at a fraction of conventional cost. As the owner and operator of the only public, national 0G Network dedicated to the IoT in Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Macau, Thinxtra teams with a broad ecosystem of partners to help organisations create new business models, optimise asset utilisation, monitor indoor air quality (IAQ), and unlock new customer service offerings.



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