KAUST has developed an innovative sustainable new water management system that enables towns and cities—as well as industrial facilities—to detect elevated water pressure and potential leaks at the moment they first occur. The Intelligent Utilities Monitoring System (IUMS) collects and analyzes data on water production and distribution performance using a combination of acoustic and pressure sensors novel 3-dimensional (3D) geographic information system (GIS) mapping and software. Easy to install—and to retrofit to existing pipelines—the system pinpoints to within 10-20 centimeters the location of a leak or area of high pressure and automatically generates work orders for repair crews. This Smart City technology greatly improves upon traditional reactive solutions that require workers to dig alongside a pipeline to locate a leak after water breaks through the ground surface.
The technology is ideal for municipal water systems and it can also be adapted for use in oil and chemical production and pipeline operations as well as numerous industrial manufacturing facilities.