News Dec 23, 2019

South East Water and Jacobs Make a Splash with Innovation and Technology

In the U.K., we’re working with South East Water to find new ways of addressing the utility’s toughest challenges through the use of contemporary innovation methods and telecommunication & digital technologies.

Water professional in PPE at work

On the road to becoming more innovative, South East Water has designed an innovation strategy that focuses on addressing six core objectives: Reducing leakage even further; reducing interruptions to water supply; improving the customer experience; improving conservation efforts by reducing individual consumption; ensuring water quality standards in a changing environmental backdrop; and reducing the cost to serve.

It has implemented an ideas management platform to encourage employees to come up with ideas to tackle their strategic challenges and has trained Innovation Champions across the company to help flesh out and bring these ideas to fruition. In collaboration with Jacobs, South East Water is using new methodologies and ways of working to develop and deliver solutions more quickly and efficiently.

Two of these pioneering projects where South East Water and Jacobs are working together directly address two of the six short term objectives set out in South East Water’s innovation strategy.

The Smart Water Networks trial aims to reduce leakage by using data collected from the utility’s assets to remotely assess the network and identify issues that arise, enabling maintenance to be more targeted and better prioritized. The trial partners are also enabling South East Water to understand customer behavior more accurately to drive long-term conservation efforts. Partners involved with the pilot project include Honeywell, Diehl, Gutermann, Xylem brands Sensus and Visenti, ATI, Syrinix, Arqiva, Vodafone, Advizzo, HWM, Stantec and Technolog.

The project partners will also be enabling South East Water to trial new approaches to customer engagement with opportunities to drive long-term conservation behavior change.

The Water Quality Monitoring project is helping South East Water to better understand the relationship between chlorine degradation and the time it’s retained in service reservoirs, with the aim of better managing the system so spontaneous maintenance is required less. This project leveraged Siemens’ Mindsphere solution and integrated with ATI water quality sensors in the network to find correlations in South East Water data, providing insights to prevent water quality events from happening.

This is just the tip of the iceberg as South East Water was shortlisted for two awards at this year’s Utilities Week Awards – to read more about the journey that South East Water and Jacobs are on, head to the last article in the Smart Water Report. And for more on our smart water metering solutions, click here.