Fiber optics may solve water loss from leaky pipes.

Fiber optics may solve water loss from leaky pipes.

Inexpensive Fiber Optics Used to Monitor Water Leaks

Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost every day worldwide, and the International Water Association (IWA) identifies underground leaks on water mains and service pipes as the main culprits for this loss1. To address this issue, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fiber optics2.

In their study, the scientists developed a distributed fiber optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which allows for the processing and storage of optical information3. They applied the technology to High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, which are widely used for water conveyance purposes4.

To test the fiber optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe, such as those resulting from water leaks, the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface5. The experiment consisted of two main phases, with the first stage successfully assessing the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe under static pressure6.

Building upon this success, the scientists then focused on detecting pressure anomalies caused by water leaks in a piping circuit with flowing water7. The results were encouraging, confirming the potential of DFOS for identifying and localizing even very small water leaks8.

Encouraged by these findings, the research team plans to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of “natively smart” HDPE pipes with integrated DFOS cables9. By leveraging machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data, they aim to create a leak prediction model10.

Water technology currently receives limited funding, despite its crucial role in managing our natural resources, especially in a climate crisis-stricken world11. The use of innovative solutions like DFOS can be instrumental in preventing water leakage, conserving this precious resource, and minimizing its wastage.

The Problem of Water Leakage

Water leakage is a significant global issue, with billions of cubic meters of water lost every day12. Underground leaks on water mains and service pipes are major contributors to this problem13. Detecting and repairing these leaks promptly is essential to ensure the efficient use of water resources and maintain a sustainable water supply.

Traditionally, the detection of water leaks has been challenging, often requiring manual inspection or relying on costly technologies. These methods are time-consuming, inefficient, and can result in substantial water loss before a leak is detected and repaired. Therefore, there is a pressing need for more effective and economical approaches to identify and locate water leaks quickly.

Introducing Distributed Fiber Optic Sensing

In an innovative effort to tackle the issue of water leakage, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have explored the use of distributed fiber optic sensing (DFOS)14. DFOS leverages Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, commonly used in fiber optics for high-speed internet connections, to monitor water pipeline networks15.

To conduct their experiment, the researchers developed a fiber optic cable embedded with DFOS based on the SBS technology16. They applied this cable to High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the prevalent system for water conveyance in various domains including civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes17.

Testing the Abilities of DFOS

To evaluate the effectiveness of the DFOS cable in detecting pressure anomalies caused by water leaks, the research team wrapped it around the outer surface of the HDPE pipes18. The experiment was conducted in two phases: the initial assessment of the sensor layout sensitivity under static pressure and detecting pressure anomalies in a piping circuit with flowing water19.

In the first phase, the scientists successfully determined the sensitivity of the DFOS system to detect pressure changes caused by static stress on an HDPE pipe20. Encouraged by these results, they proceeded to the second phase. This phase involved testing the cable’s ability to identify and locate water leaks within a piping circuit while water was flowing21.

Promising Results and Future Developments

Overall, the results of the experiment provided positive feedback on the effectiveness of DFOS in detecting water leaks, including the ability to identify even very small leaks22. Based on this success, the research team intends to further refine their monitoring solution and progress towards the production of “natively smart” HDPE pipes that integrate the DFOS cable23.

Additionally, the researchers aim to leverage machine learning algorithms to analyze the data collected by the DFOS cable, leading to the development of a leak prediction model24. This predictive capability could help prevent water leaks before they occur, contributing to the efficient management of water resources and reducing wastage.

The Importance of Water Technology in a Climate Crisis-Stricken World

Despite the critical role played by water technology in managing our natural resources, it often receives limited funding25. However, with the increasing impact of climate change and growing concerns about water scarcity, investing in innovative solutions becomes even more crucial.

Efficient water resource management, including the detection and prevention of water leaks, is essential for preserving this vital resource. By employing advanced technologies like DFOS, we can not only conserve water but also minimize the potential negative consequences of water wastage on the environment.

While water leakage may seem like a small-scale issue, it has significant cumulative effects. Addressing this problem through the development and implementation of technologies like DFOS is an important step towards creating a more sustainable future, where water is used judiciously and wastage is minimized.

Water Pipeline

Image: Water Pipeline


  1. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  2. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  3. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  4. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  5. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  6. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  7. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  8. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  9. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  10. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  11. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  12. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  13. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  14. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  15. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  16. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  17. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  18. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  19. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  20. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  21. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  22. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  23. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  24. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎

  25. Source: Approximately 48.6 billion cubic meters of water are lost around the world every day. According to the International Water Association (IWA), the main culprits for this loss are underground leaks on water mains and service pipes. To monitor leaks in water pipeline networks, researchers at the Polytechnic University of Milan have experimented with a novel method using fibre optics — the inexpensive and commonly- used technology that allows us to have fast internet at home. The scientists developed a distributed fibre optic sensing (DFOS) cable based on the so-called Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) technology, which enables the processing and storage of optical information. They worked on High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipes, the mainstream water-conveying system for civil, agricultural, and industrial purposes. To test the fibre optic cable’s ability to detect deformation caused by pressure anomalies along a pipe (such as the ones resulting from water leaks), the team wrapped and mounted it on the pipe’s outer surface. The experiment comprised two main phases. First off, the scientists assessed the sensitivity of the sensor layout on an HDPE pipe that was stressed with static pressure. “This first stage was successful, so we then concentrated on detecting the pressure anomaly produced by a leak in a piping circuit with flowing water,” explained the researchers. “Overall, the results returned positive feedback on the use of DFOS, confirming the possibility of identifying and localising even very small water leaks.” The team is planning to further develop their monitoring solution and work towards the production of industrial-scale, “natively smart” HDPE pipes with an integrated DFOS cable. Using machine learning algorithms to interpret the cable’s data could also lead to a leak prediction model. While water tech still receives only a silver of funding, it will play a crucial role in managing our natural resources — especially in a climate crisis-struck world.↩︎