Water Online

JUL 2017

Water Innovations gives Water and Wastewater Engineers and end-users a venue to find project solutions and source valuable product information. We aim to educate the engineering and operations community on important issues and trends.

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going on in the network and enable technicians to be more effective in their diagnosis of issues, thus protecting the customer in a more efficient manner, while also protecting technician health and safety by ensuring they are not called out to a false incident in remote areas in the middle of the night. And Getting Bigger … Working on the small scale has its value, but it won't resolve all situations; there is a place for increased monitoring in the wastewater network, with the major benefit being protection of the environment. This is where the Event Duration Monitoring program comes in. It is one of the focuses of the WASCs this asset management period (AMP). It stems from a Ministerial Direction that promised the monitoring of the "majority" of storm overflows by 2020. The knowledge about these assets and their performance has been questioned, and the subsequent impact on the environment is a big question that the Minister and the Environment Agency wants answered in order to find out the inherent problems that lie in the wastewater collection network. Over the next few years, teams of people will install thousands of monitors prioritized so that the highest-impact areas are completed first to monitor when, where, and for how long spills from the wastewater network are happening. The first monitors have been installed and a year's worth of data collected, and approximately 12 percent of combined storm overflows (CSOs) warrant further investigation based upon their current performance and, depending upon the results, drive further investment within the network infrastructure. The need for the future is to see what impact any schemes have on the holistic environment, what improvements can be made, and what impact this has on the holistic water environment and the quality of future discharges from our wastewater treatment works. … And Bigger Taking a step on from the monitoring of the network, the next question that has to be asked is what we can do to provide a more strategic management of the wastewater network. It is an approach that has been taken in Europe for many years. The multiple reports by UK Water Industry Research (UKWIR) and Mouchel (now part of WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff ) on active system control describe in detail what work needs to be done and what has been done in other countries. A great example of this is in Denmark, where high-speed modeling techniques have been used to provide overall management of the wastewater network so that it can be managed more effectively. Another example is the work that was done in the Southern Water region of the UK. The Eastney project used a combination of modeling techniques and rainfall radar as part of a solution to mitigate the risk of flooding within the area. Part of a much wider solution that includes green infrastructure, the smart wastewater network gives the company advanced warning of what will happen moving forward, informing decisions on methods of operation for the pumping station, which is a critical part of the overall wastewater treatment system. The individual parts of this project form building blocks to what the smart wastewater network is made up of (in a simplified way): • Weather radar and modern rain gauges; • Sewer level monitors; • A centralized sewer network model capable of fast simulation; and • Communication and telemetry systems to tie it all together. If there is a weakness, it may be the quality of the weather radar systems, but this Data-as-a-Service (or DaaS) is a solution that others within the water industry are looking at — a couple of years ago, high-quality X-ray fluorescence (XRF) weather radars were investigated by the University of Delft, and weather data and prediction has become a data service within the water industry. The impact of weather radars, coupled with data from rain gauges, will allow for predictive models to determine how the "smart network" can help the industry manage flows. The Future Of Smart Wastewater Networks — A Holistic Approach The ultimate aim of a smart wastewater network is to help the industry to make better-informed decisions about how to operate the wastewater system by facilitating the flow of wastewater through the entire system, all the way from the customer's toilet, through collection, into treatment, and out to reuse or recycle in such a way that we optimize not just the cost of the whole process but the impact that it has on both people and the environment. Operationally, this comes from limiting incidents and events such as pollutions and flooding to either zero (the brave aim of the future) or as near to zero as we can possibly get. This can be achieved, and we are seeing water companies take this approach now with a number of different technologies — from a simple "Customer Flood Alarm" wateronline.com n Water Innovations 25 INSTRUMENTATION

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