In preparation for a large-scale implementation, Sensus and Entropia are currently running dozens of FlexNet and TETRA trials in Belgium and the Netherlands. The technology and connectivity are being tested by both companies, and end users, to ensure full coverage is achieved.
With a smart water network using FlexNet technology, water companies in the region can monitor and diagnose issues remotely via the Entropia network. For example, companies can initiate proactive maintenance, detect underground leaks at a distance, and accurately determine the chemical composition of the water in near real time. Additionally, consumers will have more insight into their water consumption. Entropia and ComBus are deploying and managing the FlexNet network on their licensed radio spectrum, which is dedicated to critical national infrastructure in the Benelux region.
Entropia is the first private Communications Service Provider in the Western European market and provides an exclusive IoT communications network that has been specifically designed to transport mission critical data produced by utility companies.
“FlexNet uses a licensed radio spectrum that is protected by law against interference from other networks and devices,” says Philip Vercruysse, Founder & CEO, Entropia. “This not only improves performance, but also offers more security and reliability than other IoT networks that are designed for consumer IoT devices, such as smart fridges. No company should send critical data over shared networks on which millions of other non-critical devices and applications also communicate.”
Philip Vercruysse, Founder & CEO
Water utilities face the considerable challenge of delivering more sustainable products and services, at lower costs. Using FlexNet, in combination with Entropia's TETRA communications network, these companies can collect critical data from the utility’s system and automatically implement the necessary changes. This system of monitoring and controlling means that utilities can provide water in a more reliable, safe and cost-efficient way.
“The water networks in the Benelux region have lower levels of non-revenue water compared to many other countries in Europe. The business case for implementing a smart water network is that mission critical data will help water utilities manage their networks and streamline their operations more efficiently.” says Tom Mills, Director of Smart Water EMEA, Sensus.
“The water companies want to understand the end to end operation of the network and make changes to it in real-time. The only way to do this is to implement a communications network that has been optimised for the utility sector. This offers cost savings in the production of water, near real-time monitoring of the chemical composition of the water and predictive remote maintenance. This means that fewer people are needed on location to identify and resolve possible problems, in turn this increases operational efficiency resulting in tangible savings for the utility.”