Artificial intelligence technology and sensors can significantly reduce the expensive water losses in municipal systems. Researchers at the University of Waterloo in Canada developed an AI software technology to identify tiny leaks in water pipes.
How AI helps Cities to detect these Water Leaks?
The municipal water system combines AI software and signal processing methods to detect symptoms of leaks in water pipes. This is further accomplished by recording acoustic signatures with the help of hydrophone sensors. These sensors can be easily and economically installed in water pipes without taking them out of service. A lead researcher at Waterloo revealed that this procedure would enable cities to utilize their resources for repair and maintenance in a much effective manner. He also mentioned that attention should also be paid to small leaks as they go unnoticed for years. Also, these water leaks if not treated early can create chronic health hazards deteriorate over a period of time, and destruct the foundation of structures. He also made an important suggestion that by rectifying these small leaks on time, future destructive and expensive bursts can be prevented.
Researchers at the Waterloo are now performing field tests with the help of hydrant sensors after identifying leaks which are very small in size. In addition to this, they are working on finding the location of water leaks, which would help municipalities to detect, prioritize, and work on repairs. As of now, municipalities send laborers out to check if there is leak in a particular pipe because of aging.
The hydrant sensor functions by pre-processing acoustic data using improved signal processing methods and identifies pipes with leaks. Through this process, machine learning algorithms can detect leaks by differentiating the related signs from various other sources of noise in a water distribution structure.