2 weeks ago we we set up the first LoRa powered Ultrasonic Smart Water metering platform for a Township at ELCITA (Electronic City Industrial Township Authority). This was in collaboration with TCL and ELCITA, and supported by a host of institutions - Semtech, Tejas and RBC-CPS particularly.
We encountered several challenges along the way - connectivity challenges, water seepage challenges, compliance challenges, integration challenges to name but a few But the result is awesome - Real time data of water consumption. An extremely simple to use Command and Control that provides a Godlike view of information at all the installations from ELCITA's perspective and for the consumer, a personal app on Android/iOS that provides insight into their consumption patterns, comparisons, and most importantly for both, methods and models to saving water.
In Smart Water Metering while real time data and LPWAN's are big steps technically, where it is giant leap is in the mind-set. Of realising the immense value and benefits this can bring over traditional metering or even over AMR - both walk by or drive by remote metering. This recent BBC report is stark about Blr having the dubious distinction as the first city in India that has actually physically run out of water; another more ominous article questions whether Blr will have to be evacuated because of acute water issues.
To a water scarce city like Bengaluru, employing tools like pervasive smart metering could be key in its conservation mechanism. At Gaia, we are certainly moving to where the puck will be.