Smart water use technology gears up

CWI spin-off Seita has been awarded an innovation grant to further develop its real-time water use analysis tools. The 200,000-euro grant allows Seita and its partners to enhance analysis of water use, using smart sensors connected to a cloud-based data platform. The grant was provided by the Dutch province of Noord-Holland.

Saving drinking water starts with analysing water use. Tracking when water use increases or decreases, and subsequently identifying what causes these fluctuations, creates opportunities to reduce consumption. However, drinking water suppliers do not yet have the technical means to map the exact backgrounds of water consumption. In the case of large consumers, such as agricultural businesses, water consumption can fluctuate enormously, with no apparent reason.

Water consumption anomalies
The CWI spin-off Seita set out to tackle this problem, by developing smart sensors that track patterns and provide insight into when anomalies in water consumption occur. Once it is clear when abnormal peaks occur (and can even be predicted) an agricultural company could pinpoint the exact activities or circumstances that must have led to a much higher water consumption. Once the causes have been pointed out, for example lavish water pumps or leaks, they can be tackled.

Innovation grant
To turn this idea into reality, Seita teamed up with Dutch tech company MeterInsight, which builds cloud-based data platforms able to connect to meters and sensors in the field. The research couple has now secured a 200,000-euro innovation grant from the Dutch province of Noord-Holland. The grant allows the companies to start a joint two-year trial with the Dutch water supplier Brabant Water.

If proven successful, the Seita method could be applied to analyse anomalies in many other areas, including energy consumption, ground water levels, and crop yield.

Further connecting the online water research community, Seita will organize a conference on smart drinking water use later this year. The conference, to be held at CWI, will allow visitors to share experiences, challenges, and opportunities with data analysis. Dutch will be the conference’s main language. More information about the conference will be provided on this website once available.

Seita was launched in 2016 by researchers from CWI’s research group Intelligent and Autonomous Systems. From its conception, the company focuses on creating digital automation and intelligence for sustainability projects, in areas such as energy, water and migration.

Image credits

Header image: CWI.jpg

Icon image: CWI Seita.jpg