How Xylem’s technologies can promote a sustainable approach

How Xylem’s technologies can promote a sustainable approach

Sector: Water Utilities

Challenge: Sustainability

Given that water use and management account for up to 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions, the drive towards a more sustainable future presents the opportunity for the water industry to take a starring role.

Its commitment to make significant reductions in carbon emissions has been laid out in Water UK’s Net Zero 2030 Routemap for the next eight years, a dedication to safeguard our planet which we share here at Xylem.

We are working to help utilities meet relevant and realistic science-based targets, offering solutions to the challenges of alleviating water shortages, operating more efficiently, and effectively meeting stricter regulations.

Helping you solve water

The new and emerging technologies offered by Xylem, from real-time decision support system to high-resolution inspection technologies, can empower water companies to optimise performance, slash energy usage and minimise wear to avoid the carbon embodiment of replacement inventory.

Our smart water solutions encompass three areas: intelligent equipment, smart networks and digital solutions. Intelligent equipment includes pumps, mixers, treatment technologies and sensors that can self-optimise to improve performance, meaning less time and effort needed to monitor and maintain equipment, while smart networks gather information across assets to allow remote monitoring of operations around the clock, meaning reactive management can take place in real time as needed.

Digital solutions combine this real-time data with algorithms to proactively manage systems, facilitating predictive maintenance via insights into asset conditions and helping prevent overflows.

Designs fit for the future

Design any new infrastructure project with sustainability in mind from the outset with the help of our Building Information Modelling (BIM) software. It collects, manages and exchanges information throughout the life cycle of an asset to build a digital simulation that allows planners and consultants to predict energy consumption and operational effectiveness and minimise carbon footprint and environmental impact.

Coming clean about water loss

The extensive and costly work needed to replace water mains based on age, rather than condition, is becoming a thing of the past thanks to our solutions that help rapidly detect pipe bursts and identify leaks at the early stages. As well as saving money and manpower, this extends the lifetime of assets and allows water leaders to make data-informed decisions on replacement.

Xylem’s SmartBall and PipeDiver are just two innovative solutions which can operate while pipelines are in use, meaning no interruption in service. Each travel through pipework to provide information on conditions and identify leaks and areas of concern.

These underground insights offer the opportunity to take a condition-based approach to maintenance and bypass emergency repairs as well as unnecessary age-based replacement strategies.

Learning how to use less

Water utilities are uniquely placed to influence customers to reduce the non-essential use of water, in turn reducing the need for abstraction and treatment (and saving the energy needed for these processes).

Water used at home accounts for more than 50% of all public water supply use, making it a worthwhile target for reducing water wastage – and our next-generation water meters have a valuable role to play. Read more about how Thames Water customers with a smart meter used 13% less water at home here.

Our Cordonel smart meters, which communicate across a Sensus network, can also provide pressure monitoring to rapidly identify non-revenue water on the customer side, improve efficiency, and inspect the overall health of the network.

Cutting call-outs and chemicals

Smart water solutions are the sustainable way to optimise processes to save energy, reducing call-outs and cutting back on chemical usage, making them ideal for retrofitting in existing wastewater treatment plants and avoid the need for additional infrastructure and disturbance.

In Cuxhaven, Germany, Xylem’s Treatment System Optimization used artificial intelligence to analyse the data in the existing SCADA system of a wastewater treatment plant before predicting the best set points at which to operate, reducing aeration energy use by 30%.

Closer to home Scottish Water recorded a 99.8% reduction in attendance visits and a significant reduction in journey time when it trialled Xylem Concertor, the first wastewater pumping solution with integrated intelligence, at two of its Ayrshire pumping stations: Maple Grove and Cross Dene. 56 hours of cleaning and monitoring were reduced to just two monthly checks, while the stations now use 40% and 30% fewer kilowatts a year respectively, meaning an OPEX saving of more than £42,000 a year. Read more here.

Futureproofing water

Limiting interventions to save on resources with a condition-based maintenance regime, aided by the latest digital tools, is just one way utilities can take strides to reduce their impact.

We share your goals to generate sustainable solutions to futureproof the way we use water, from designs aimed to lower energy consumption from the outset to optimised systems that lengthen the life cycle of assets. Let Xylem bring our knowledge and momentum to invest together in a greener future by harnessing the power of highly efficient and advanced smart technologies to boost water productivity, quality and resilience.

by Andrew Welsh, Sales Director - Water Utilities, Xylem Water Solutions