top of page

Remotely Monitoring Dam and Water level: Ellenex IoT Strategies for Enhancing Energy Efficiency

Australia has over 500 Large dams, each with the capacity to hold more than 1 million cubic meters of water!
Australian has one of most rich water resources, especially in forms of water dams, supplying fresh waters to industrial and household purposes in an energy efficient way

The Dominance of Australian Water Dams 

With a direct correlation between a nation's prosperity and its capacity to store water to fulfil these diverse requirements, but unfortunately a significant portion of the global population facing water scarcity and lacking access to clean water for basic necessities, the importance of water resources cannot be overstated. Australia, despite being the driest inhabited continent, is fortunate to possess advanced water storage and distribution systems, ensuring high-quality water is available to the majority of its inhabitants.

With a staggering 93% of Australia's water comes from surface water, making it a critical resource for the country's survival and prosperity. This reliance on surface water has led to the long term dominance of water dams in Australia's water management system, especially in urban areas where they play a pivotal role in water distribution. There are more than 500 large Dams in Australia that are over 15 meters high, Victoria alone has over 450,000 dams that possess an total capacity of 13,400,000 million liters of water! Shaping the economy and our way of life, providing water for drinking and bathing, water for industries - water for irrigation, water for power generation, water for fish farming and recreation, and for other needs.

  • Limited and Unpredictable Rainfall: Australia has a precarious relationship with water due to its limited and unpredictable rainfall. The continent's average annual rainfall is only 470mm, which is unevenly distributed across different regions. This uneven distribution, combined with climate change leading to less rainfall and higher temperatures, makes water dams a critical component of water management.

  • Extreme Weather Events: The extreme weather events of recent decades, including droughts and high temperatures, have forced Australia to adopt a renewed respect for water conservation. The Millennium Drought, which brought long-term water restrictions to highly populated areas, was a catalyst for change. Dams provide a reliable source of water during these periods, ensuring that water supply needs can be met.

  • Water Trading Scheme: Since the late 1980s, Australia has implemented an innovative water trading scheme that allows landowners to loan or sell their water entitlements on an open market. This scheme helps redistribute water to where it is needed most, including to areas facing water restrictions. The existence of such a scheme underscores the importance of water dams in securing water for the environment and for human use.

  • Environmental Sustainability: The widespread acceptance that environmental sustainability is a crucial goal of water management in Australia has led to investments in infrastructure, innovation, and conservation. Water dams play a significant role in these efforts by providing a sustainable and energy efficient source of water that can be managed and conserved over time.

  • Declining Water Supply and Growing Demand: Driven by the twin challenges of declining water supply and growing demand, Australia has stepped up its efforts to secure its water future. Water dams offer a cost-effective long-term solution for providing bulk water to urban areas, often being easier to treat compared to alternative sources like seawater desalination

Water dams are not just reservoirs, they are complex systems that require constant monitoring to ensure their optimal operation. Strongly recommended by the National Water Grid Authority (NWGF), water utility investments are steadily oriented towards promoting positive nature outputs through actions such as carbon sequestration and energy savings. This is where the challenges begin. Managing and monitoring these dams, especially in the face of climate change and droughts in rural areas, is a daunting yet substantial task.

The challenge of managing water dams and surface water resources are pitval for the energy efficiency and operational expenditures for Australian water utilities

The Challenge of Wielding Tons of Water: Energy Efficiency

The management of water dams in Australia is fraught with challenges. Climate change, characterised by more frequent and severe droughts, poses a significant threat to the country's water resources. The energy consumption for water companies to manage their dams is substantial, with the need for constant monitoring and adjustments to ensure water levels are maintained at optimal levels. 

  • Rural Locations: Many dams are situated in remote and rural areas, making access difficult and costly. Maintenance teams often face logistical challenges in reaching these sites promptly, especially during emergencies or adverse weather conditions. Not only consuming a significant amount of energy but also requires skilled personnel in rural environments, adding to the operational costs.

  • Limited Infrastructure: The infrastructure surrounding these dams, such as roads and communication networks, may be underdeveloped or inadequate. This hampers the timely transmission of data and communication between operators and management teams, potentially delaying crucial decisions.

  • Challenges of Measurements: Accurately measuring water levels and assessing dam conditions in such environments can be challenging. Factors like sedimentation, algae growth, and debris accumulation can distort measurements, leading to inaccurate assessments of water storage and potential risks.

  • Energy Consumption and Pumping Systems: Running pumping systems to manage water levels efficiently consumes substantial energy. Maintaining optimal energy efficiency in these systems is crucial to minimise operational costs and reduce the environmental footprint of dam management activities.

Enhance your Water Dams Management with Ellenex IoT Solutions

IoT (Internet of Things) technologies refer to the network of interconnected devices embedded with sensors, software, and other technologies that enable them to collect and exchange data. 

Being one of the most promising investments for energy savings, IoT devices such as smart thermostats and level & pressure sensors can be specialised in industrial settings, including the monitoring systems for water dams.

Ellenex offers energy efficiency IoT solutions for Water industries using the advanced LPWAN technologies such as NB-IoT and LoraWAN, measuring level and meterflows
PLV3-N | NB IoT - Cat-M1 IP68 rated Floating Level Transmitter for Water Resource Management, safeguarding our water industrial clients in energy efficient appraochs

When it comes to high quality and durable IoT technologies, Ellenex is always proud to offer our advanced and cost-effective solutions, enabling our water industrial clients with the capability and confidence for real-time monitoring and data analytics capabilities.

  • Pre-configurable Environmental Monitoring IoT devices can be deployed in remote and rural areas where dams are often located, enabling continuous monitoring of water levels, structural integrity, and environmental conditions. This real-time data transmission facilitates early detection of issues and allows for prompt intervention, reducing the risk of damage and costly repairs.

  • Environmental Monitoring: IoT sensors can also monitor environmental parameters such as level, water quality, pressure and temperature conditions in and around the dam area. This data enables operators to assess the environmental impact of dam operations, implement mitigation measures, and comply with regulatory requirements, thereby promoting environmental sustainability.

  • High Data Accuracy: IoT sensors can provide accurate and reliable measurements of water levels and other relevant parameters, overcoming challenges associated with manual measurements and environmental factors like sedimentation and debris. Advanced algorithms and data analytics techniques can further enhance the accuracy and reliability of the collected data.

  • Energy Efficiency for battery consumptions: IoT solutions, particularly those leveraging advanced technologies like LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Network), enable efficient monitoring of energy consumption in pumping systems and other infrastructure used in dam management. By collecting data on energy usage in real-time and analysing patterns, operators can identify opportunities for optimization and implement strategies to improve energy efficiency, thereby reducing operational costs and environmental impact.

  • Predictive Maintenance: IoT-enabled monitoring systems can facilitate predictive maintenance by continuously monitoring the condition of equipment and infrastructure components. By analysing data trends and patterns, these systems can predict potential failures or maintenance needs before they occur, allowing for proactive maintenance actions to be taken. This approach minimises downtime, extends the lifespan of assets, and reduces maintenance costs.

Ellenex Offerings

Related blogs
bottom of page