Smart network services

Detect leaks and fix faults before they impact customers and the community

Our sophisticated acoustic monitoring capabilities, coupled with advanced data algorithms, allow us to detect and proactively fix faults before they disrupt customers and the community and to detect hidden leaks that never surface and reduce unaccounted water loss.

Leaks and breaks pose a significant issue for every water utility network around the world. Reducing leaks and breaks is critical in minimising disruption to customers, conserving water, supporting ongoing drought resilience efforts and reducing maintenance and repair costs.

Overall leakage from hidden leaks and undetected breaks in pipes that are buried deep underground is significantly higher than from reported breaks alone.

The ability to plan maintenance, rather than react to an incident, enables a water utility to work with its customers, provide them advance notice and minimise the inconvenience of service interruptions. This will lead to increased customer satisfaction and significantly reduce costs.

Our Smart Water Network Solution

Emerging technologies provide significant opportunity for smarter water service solutions that better meet customers’ changing expectations.

SA Water embraces innovation to improve what we do and how we do it. That’s why we have made a significant investment in the development of our Smart Water Network, starting in Adelaide’s central business district in 2017, to test new technologies that would significantly reduce the incidence of pipe breaks and leaks in the Adelaide CBD for the benefit of our customers and the community.

Components of our Smart Water Network now include a network of acoustic sensors that transmit data to a world-leading statistical and machine learning analytics program for identifying pipe crack or leak events, and a feature-rich monitoring dashboard, and field operational response elements.

The network of more than 300 sensors that monitor our network 24/7 transmit real-time information to our data analytics system about the performance of our underground water network. This enables us to identify anomalies, such as leaks, and proactively repair faults before they cause service disruptions.

Since July 2017, when we deployed 420 Von Roll Ortomat-MT acoustic sensors within the Adelaide CBD and North Adelaide Water Network, we have detected 55 leaks through cracks on pipes or joints and proactively repaired them. This equates to an approximate 50% increase in the number of proactive pipe repairs in the Adelaide CBD.

Several leaks in hydrants, stop valves and pipes may have led to large water loss and unnecessary costs. We have audited the direct and indirect economic benefit versus cost of the system and have determined it to be significantly positive.

Since installation, our Smart Water Network has reduced the number of false alerts from thousands per week to less than 2-5 (based on the Adelaide CBD deployment of 400 acoustic sensors). All other alerts, approximately 10 per week, have enabled us to proactively pinpoint pipe cracks and/or identify leak repairs.

Our Smart Water Network has seen us repair faults while the city sleeps, and reduce water loss, water service interruptions, and commuter delays.