A device the size of a large matchbox will help protect Melbourne Water’s infrastructure network and provide information on air quality.
The device, which was developed in collaboration with the Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) and Green Technology Services, is Internet of Things enabled and will alert Melbourne Water to any corrosion in its pipes and tanks. It has also been fitted with an air particle counter to help the EPA understand issues such as smoke from bushfires.
Melbourne Water Team Leader, Automation Delivery Russell Riding said about 200 of the devices will be installed across the utility’s water pipe network. They will be fitted inside existing corrosion protection stations positioned alongside the utility’s main transfer pipelines across the greater metro areas.
“This system will alert our asset managers if any issues with the operation of the corrosion protection systems occur,” Riding said.
“This will allow us to get to the affected site quickly and make the necessary repairs sooner, removing hundreds of time-consuming manual inspections we currently perform across our network.”
For the EPA, Air Quality Scientist Gavin Fisher said the project was about exploring new ways of collecting air quality data and information on pollution impacting Melbourne.
“Before this innovation we’ve been limited in the ways and places we can collect air quality information,” he said.
“This is an exciting and unique collaboration with Melbourne Water. We’ve obviously partnered on water issues before but not on air issues.”
Melbourne Water will begin installing the devices this month.