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Tackling trunk main losses

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Supply interruptions and water losses from leaks in transmission pipes and trunk mains are some of the most challenging issues faced by water utilities, due the large diameter of the pipes and the materials from which they are made.
However, a revolutionary satellite leak detection technology is helping address this complex problem, making finding leaks a lot easier.
Drinking water pipelines are one of the sector’s largest and most expensive capital assets and maintaining their integrity must be a key priority.
To achieve this, the reduction of water losses is a strategic necessity. In October 2019, a pioneering pilot project was carried out on more than 1,000 kilometres (km) of transmission mains in southern Africa using Utilis’ satelliteborne L-band syntheticaperture radar (SAR) analytics.
Points of interest on the vast trunk main network were narrowed down using the technology, then specialist acoustic leak detection equipment from Swiss water loss technology company Gutermann was used to verify them and pinpoint leaks.
While traditional leak detection techniques and instruments are less suitable for surveying large stretches of...

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