City – water goes wireless

CTIA_TWA_K_BIGWater is one of the most treasured natural resources on our planet, and effectively and safely providing it, and, after it’s been used, taking it away and treating it, is becoming an increasingly more efficient process because of wireless technology. The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority, which offers wholesale water and sewer services to more than two-and-a-million Boston area residents, is deploying a wide array of wireless solutions and hardware that are saving invaluable time and money, preserving a most precious commodity.

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The MWRA is responsible for transporting about 215 million gallons of water to 61 communities, and removing and treating nearly 350 million gallons of sewage, every day. Underground wireless sensors constantly monitor flow and provide an exact accounting of how much water each community is using. That allows for accurate billing, which ultimately benefits the residents serviced by the MWRA community partners.

The sensors can also detect problems such as leakage. Knowing precisely where there’s a breakdown in the system allows the MWRA to more rapidly fix a broken pipe, reducing costs and saving huge volumes of water which can be lost in such failures.

The MWRA has deployed mobile technology in its sewage service for several years, and it is now retrofitting its entire water delivery system with wireless sensors. In addition to their flow monitoring capabilities, the sensors are capable of measuring water quality. That will allow the agency to automatically detect any deviations in the elements present in the drinking water, and quickly determine the cause of those abnormalities and how best to address them.

As we recognize this year’s Earth Day commemoration, the MWRA’s use of wireless communication is another example of the technology’s key role in improving how we live. It’s helping us better preserve an essential natural resource, and I think we all gladly drink to that.

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Watch more segments highlighting the benefits of wireless communication, on topics such as urban parking, environmental monitoring, smart water management and more.