Project: DETECTING WATER DISTRIBUTION AND RESERVOIRS LOSES PER REMOTE SENSING ADVANCED TECHNIQUES

Water is vital for human and economic development, and for COtaining ecosystems. The OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development) has identified water as one of the four critical environmental priorities for the coming two decades. On current trends, 47% of the world’s population will live in areas of high water stress in 2030. The world has enough water, but it needs to manage it better._x000D__x000D_The modern life requires transport of water to all existing customers where ever they are. The water transportation makes use of piping and open tunnels systems. These transportation systems use infrastructures which suffer from aging and are not frequently replaced. The wear of the infrastructure causes water losses, which might reach high percentages. Water leakages from distribution networks are as high as 50% in certain areas of Europe (European Environment Agency). _x000D__x000D_This project aims at developing a service to centrally monitor and locate water leaks from water reservoirs, water transport open canals and large diameter water pipes buried up to 2 meters underground. The service will utilise airborne and satellite remote sensing for locating water leaks in open spaces, not in urban environment. The project will make use of synergies between optic/thermal and Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) remote sensing technologies to locate water leaks and will be critically useful to prevent water losses. _x000D__x000D_In order to assure the continuity of data, the service will be developed based on future data from the Sentinels, the operational satellites from the European Space Agency (ESA). The ESA Sentinels constitute the first series of operational satellites responding to the Earth Observation needs of the EU-ESA GMES program. In addition, airborne sensors will be also used, this will allow to reach the required spatial resolution._x000D__x000D_Water is a major concern for environmental policies. Water losses during transport have a negative impact on the water capacity and amount of water available for the consumers. Water infrastructures can be outdated or have reached the end of their service life causing leakage problems and therefore contributing to increase the level of water abstraction in order to keep water supply levels. _x000D_Leak detection is a necessary component in the management of water distribution systems worldwide. Accurate location of water leaks from reservoirs and distribution pipes within a supply system are important for subsequent repair services to conserve water as well as energy. Water that is lost after treatment and pressurization, but before delivery to consumers, are a monetary and an energy waste._x000D__x000D_Traditional field survey methods for detection of water leaks (water flow monitoring, acoustic methods ...) require added infrastructure or ground-based surveys and are costly and time consuming. Therefore, it is very important to find ways for effective and efficient detection of leaks, which can serve as a basis for the establishment of leak repair system._x000D__x000D_Remote sensing has been used in a few reported cases to detect leaks in aqueducts, either directly through changes to soil and surface water content or indirectly through effects on the vigor and health of overlying vegetation. Airborne remotely sensed thermal imagery has been used in detection of canal leaks (Pickerill and Malthus 1998, Huang 2005)._x000D__x000D_The direct remote sensing of water leaks is based on the detection of the soil moisture produced by the leak and can be based both on optical and thermal sensors as well as on active microwaves. The electro-optical sensors in the thermal region are able to identify temperatures difference that can be related to surface soil moisture. This property is used in leaks detection by thermal devices that look for the temperature differences in the surrounding ground caused by saturation due to the leaked water. Active microwaves, (wave length in the centimeters region), are also able to detect soil moisture and have the capability to penetrate soil and to detect underground moisture. SAR systems can be thus used to detect underground moisture up to depth of 3 meters (Shutko et al., 2007)._x000D__x000D_However, currently there is no operational service to identify water leaks by remote sensing._x000D_In this context, this project aims at developing a service to monitor water networks and irrigation channels using remote sensing techniques. The proposed service will enable to centrally monitor large areas in short time, to identify the current status of the infrastructures and to identify water leaks as soon as they are produced. The management of water will be much more efficient, saving thus time and money. _x000D__x000D_In this proposal isardSAT will lead a strong expert Pship comprising:_x000D__x000D_· isardSAT, Barcelona - SAR remote sensing expert_x000D_· Hetz Hazafon, Israel - Optic-thermal remote sensing expert and mapping service provider_x000D_. Consorci d'Aigües de Tarragona - leading company in the Spain national water management sector.

Acronym DROP SAVE (Reference Number: 7724)
Duration 01/12/2013 - 31/07/2016
Project Topic This project aims at developing a service to monitor and locate water leaks from water reservoirs, water transport open canals and large diameter water pipes buried up to 2 meters underground,utilizing high resolution satellite remote sensing for locating water leaks in open spaces.
Network Eurostars
Call Eurostars Cut-Off 9

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
5 ImageSat International NV Partner Israel
5 Consorci d'Aigües de Tarragona Partner Spain
5 N. A. Rosenfeld Projects LTD Partner Israel
5 ISARDSAT, S. L. Coordinator Spain
5 HETZ HAZAFON, Ltd Observer Israel