The Sultanate of Brunei has deployed ultrasonic sensors connected to monitor the water level in the country’s flood-prone rivers. It is the first project to be rolled out utilising the country’s new LoRaWAN IoT network.
Located at the north coast of the island of Borneo in Southeast Asia, Brunei has a hot and rainy climate that brings frequent and intense flooding episodes, affecting critical infrastructures. Indeed, the banks of a nearby canal at the Brunei International Airport can suddenly overflow after 20 minutes of steady rains, preventing operations in part of the airport.
Before the new LoRaWAN-based sensors were deployed, river level monitoring in the country had been primarily based on telemetry technology. And in cases where this technology was not available, the government mobilised significant manpower for manual monitoring.
A real-time flood detection system is required to prepare the population and limit the damage. The monitoring system of the water networks is also required to address water leaks and water quality. It also ensures reservoir levels can meet demand, and the state of water pumps is kept at the optimum.
Flash flood detection.
For its new smart water management system, the Sultanate’s Ministry of Development tapped IoT provider Anian to develop for The Department of Drainage and Sewerage a solution that included sensors, IoT communications gateways for connectivity, as well as data management and application dashboards. To date, some 11 communication gateways have been installed with the aim to install 200 units.
Anian collaborated Actility and IoThink Solutions, which provided the bricks of the solution and all the necessary technical support. Specifically, the solution is deployed using Actility’s ThingPark platform with the application provided by IoThink Solutions.
According to Actility, the main challenge Anian faced was the difficulty of finding an integrated end-to-end solution that includes all the necessary elements, including hardware that must adapt to complex environments and potentially destructive weather conditions.
Anian tested various entry-level sensors with a promise of IP67 resistance that proved insufficient. Even the gateways required protection against storms. Ultimately, Anian deployed ultrasonic sensors to monitor the water level in flood-prone rivers, a solution combined with rainfall volume monitoring as well as rain gauges/tipping buckets to measure the velocity of water currents.
The solution is hosted in the Brunei government’s data centre with network operations and IoT applications being ran as managed services. To date, some 11 communication gateways have been installed with the aim to install 200 units.
The Sultanate plans to use its nationwide IoT LoRaWAN network to advance other digital initiatives such as smart city, smart building and smart energy management.