The Intelligent Drinking Water Monitoring System (IDWMS) is a multi-sensor fusion engine that brings different information domains (multiple off-the-shelf sensor array sites located strategically throughout municipal water distribution system, syndromic surveillance, customer complaints, etc.) together to provide maximal waterborne event (intentional or accidental contamination, or infrastructure failure) detection and identification, as well as contaminant concentration estimation.
The IDWMS includes two major components. One component is the multiple sensor sites installed across the water distribution network, where each sensor site consists of off-the-shelf spectroscopic and non-spectroscopic sensors (including water quality sensors and flow meters).
Commercial, off-the-shelf sensors are selected to target specific contaminants. Based on end user contaminants of interest, appropriate off-the-shelf sensors are integrated into the IDWMS sensor suites (typical sensor suite would include turbidity, ORP, pH, conductivity, free chlorine and temperature as well as a spectroscopy-based sensor). At each sensor site, the sensor suite is installed in an underground chamber which has access to a distribution pipe. Sensor data is transmitted to the command and control centre through SCADA, wireless or other communication protocols.
The second component of the IDWMS is the IDWMS database and software, which is responsible for data manipulation and interpretation. In addition to the sensor data (coming in from the sensor suites across the water distribution network), IDWMS processes and manages all available non-data streams (e.g., syndromic surveillance, customer complaints, etc). The unique IDWMS software then fuses (aggregates) all sensor and non-sensor data, resulting in contamination detection, identification and contaminant concentration estimation as well as leak detection, and presents the water quality and pipe leak information to the end user.
The IDWMS software is based on AUG Signals’ advanced detection, data fusion, probability and decision making algorithms.
The purpose of the Intelligent Drinking Water Monitoring System is not to replace the existing water surveillance procedures already in place or provide alternative sampling methods, but rather to provide an additional layer of protection to support water purveyors’ efforts to keep drinking water safe. IDWMS aims to detect contaminants at a concentration much lower than the maximum acceptable concentrations to allow for proactive contaminant removal and to prevent contamination situations from occurring.
Incorporation of non-water quality sensors (i.e. flow meters) provides early detection of pipeline leaks (IDWMS software constructs advanced mathematical models to differentiate leak flow patterns from normal flow patterns) along the distribution lines, thus enabling the authorities to dispatch appropriate crews in a timely manner to prevent significant water loss. This also reduces energy use (required to treat non-revenue water) and subsequently, decreases the emission of greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide) and other hazardous gases (sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides) that result due to the unnecessary production and treatment of water.
- Provides accurate event detection, identification and contaminant concentration quantification capabilities at concentrations much lower than the maximum acceptable concentrations to allow for proactive contaminant removal and to prevent contamination situations from occurring
- Ensures timely response in the event of a crisis
- Minimizes the scale and public health consequences of a waterborne contamination event
- Enhances emergency planning
- Is fully customizable – contaminants of interest vary depending on priorities, location. Commercial, off-the-shelf sensors are selected to target specific contaminants. Based on end user contaminants of interest, appropriate off-the-shelf sensors are integrated into the IDWMS sensor sites. The IDWMS then manipulates these data inputs and interprets the information. The accuracy of AUG Signals’ technology is independent of any specific contaminants.
- Situation assessment and support capacity – event/contamination libraries and response protocols facilitating water purveyors’ decision making
- Allows the tracing of a potential waterborne disease outbreak – location, extent, rate of spread and population at risk.
- Capability to automatically detect pipe leakages along the distribution system – enables water and energy conservation
- Facilitates the integration of a water surveillance system into asset-intensive enterprises
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