Innovation That Matters

| Photo source Fibsen

Can fibre optics transform how we detect leaks?


A startup is rethinking how businesses and municipalities monitor their water supply

Spotted: It’s estimated that 25 per cent of water in Europe is lost in leaks every year, representing a huge waste of resources and money. One Spanish company, Fibsen, is looking to change this wastefulness by using fibre optic technology to enable better management of pipe health and water supplies. 

The company’s technology has been dubbed SWIM, or Smart Water Infrastructure Monitoring, and combines fibre optic sensing with cloud processing and AI-powered analysis to allow water managers to take control of their supply at levels that are typically inaccessible. 

Fibsen collects important, high-quality data in real time, including information on water temperature, pipe health, and importantly, potential leaks. By pinpointing the locations of leaks, they can be fixed much more quickly, unlike with traditional systems where sections would have to be isolated and analysed at great time and financial expense. 

What’s more, the installation of the hardware is compatible with existing infrastructure, meaning it doesn’t rely on the expensive replacement of whole systems and can be easily incorporated into what’s already there. Additionally, once installed, the system requires little energy and is low maintenance, with continual AI analysis making it easy for water managers to keep up to date on the health of their systems. Because of this, the aim is not simply to alert users to leaks or breaks in the pipes earlier, but also to help improve and optimise water systems before damage occurs, utilising the analysis provided.  

Water is a precious resource, and many innovators are helping home and building owners reduce unnecessary water waste, including by detecting leaks using AI and smart showers that save water.

Written By: Archie Cox




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