Delivering Water Main Monitoring and Inspection Projects Around the World

 

Echologics provides high quality and actionable information to water utilities, helping to optimize capital investments, repair and rehabilitation programs and safely extend the operating life of critical water main assets.  We have completed over 400 condition assessment, leak detection and monitoring projects around the world for municipal and industrial clients.

 

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Leaks Detected on University Campus Despite Continuously-Operating Pumps

Operations staff at a large-scale corrections facility at a large U.S. university tasked Echologics with condition assessment and leak detection on 20,220 ft. of potable water ductile iron (DI) mains supplying more than 300 campus buildings. The ePULSE® technology was used to determine that most the pipes were in good or moderate condition while pinpointing sections that were in poor condition – helping client improve planning and life cycle management of water mains. During the testing, leak simulation on a 416 ft. section of 20-inch steel chilled water main demonstrated the viability of correlation on lines with continuously-operating pumps.

Tags: Campus, Condition Assessment, Distribution

Private Property Pipe Assessment Aids Infrastructure Planning

A water company that manages the assets of more than 40 water municipalities in France selected Echologics’ ePULSE® technology for the non-invasive condition assessment of 7,200 ft. of 10-inch ductile iron pipe. The ability to conduct the analysis quickly, without service interruption or excavation, was a major factor as half of the sites were located on private premises. The study found that the remaining average wall thickness ranged from good to poor, and the results are helping prioritize the rehabilitation and replacement needs of the pipeline infrastructure.

Tags: Municipal, Condition Assessment, Distribution

Condition Assessment Survey Finds $130K Leak 


Echologics recently completed a combined condition assessment and leak detection survey for a water utility in Alaska. Using ePULSE® technology to test the remaining wall thickness of two miles of 8 to 12-inch steel mains and 10-inch ductile iron (DI) mains, Echologics' field personnel found 2 segments in poor condition, 12 segments in moderate condition, and 5 segments in good condition. This information provided the utility with actionable data to determine and justify rehabilitation investments. During the inspection, the field team also located a hydrant leak with an estimated combined water loss rate of 30 GPM (43,000 gallons per day) and recoverable water value of $130,000 per year. Although confined spaces and asbestos hazards were present, all field work was completed in just four days.

Tags: Municipal, Condition Assessment, Distribution

Critical Transmission Main Monitored During Construction

Echologics recently installed an EchoShore®-TX leak monitoring system on a critical transmission main in the downtown core of a large East coast U.S. city to track the impact of extensive construction in the area.  The One-year contract to monitor the 2,200 ft. section of 30-inch cast iron (CI) and 800 ft. of ductile iron (DI) main will help the utility ensure that the asset remains in good condition (leak free) after nearby excavation and tunneling. The transmission main is nearly 30 feet deep but the Echologics field crew was up to the challenge, installing and testing the system and generating first reports in just four days.

Tags: Construction, Large Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

Metallic transmission main gets a check-up

In Florida, Echologics field engineers recently inspected a 24” cast iron main installed more than 50 years ago. The main was identified as “high risk” as it was non-redundant, supplied an island community and a major aerospace facility, and ran underneath a six-mile stretch of highway. The ePulse® condition assessment approach is non-invasive and required minimal advanced site preparation, enabling the field engineers to work at night and complete the inspection ahead of schedule. The vast majority of the transmission main proved to be in moderate or good condition. The city and its engineering consultant are using the data to plan rehabilitation and replacement budgets.

Tags: Municipal, Condition Assessment, Transmission

Historic site selects non-invasive pipe assessment

A renowned research and library campus required a non-invasive approach to searching for leaks, and determining the condition of on-site pipe assets installed in the 1930s. More than 5,000 feet of pipe connect buildings and run under historic gardens, which could not be disturbed during the inspection. The inspection was completed in just two days, with no impact to the historic grounds or facility operations. Pipe condition assessment data was input into the EchoLife™ remaining service life tool to estimate the timing and need for pipe replacement and rehabilitation. The inspection project was part of a utility, water fountain, and storm water master plan for the campus.

Tags: Campus, Condition Assessment, Distribution

Simplifying leak detection in Michigan

A large city in Michigan selected Echologics to assess approximately 600 miles of 4”-36” metallic water mains, some of which are more than 100 years old. With the objective of significantly reducing leakage, Echologics field engineers deployed the new EchoShore®-M leak detection technology. The new platform enables field technicians to inspect more pipeline in less time with greater accuracy. The EchoShore-M technology is ideal for high priority pipelines such as river, railway, and highway crossings as it can monitor the desired section of pipe from just a few hours or a few days, providing greater leak signal resolution.

Tags: Municipal, Small Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

PCCP transmission main inspection

A water company in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States evaluated the use of ePulse® condition assessment technology as a cost-effective approach to assess a 20" PCCP transmission main. Echologics' field engineers performed leak detection and determined the structural stiffness of multiple adjacent segments of the pipeline. After testing, ePulse technology results were compared to more detailed forensics tests that included destructive testing. The engineering consultant concluded, "The ePulse condition assessment approach can be used to find pipe sections in the distribution system with reduced average pipe stiffness, without removing the main from service."

Tags: Municipal, Condition Assessment, Transmission

Leak pinpointed at a river crossing

Echologics inspected a 20" cast iron pipe crossing a major river. The project was complicated by numerous bends in the pipeline as it entered, passed, and exited the 700-foot wide river. Using advanced correlator technology, the leak was clearly identified despite being submerged in a water body. Echologics field engineers used wheel measurements, as-built drawings, and laser range-finders to pinpoint the location of the leak. A diver followed the pipeline to the target location, excavated the river bed and verified the source of the leak. For critical bridge, highway, and river crossing inspections, Echologics offers leak detection services and cost-effective permanent leak monitoring solutions that send an alert to the utility when a leak develops.

Tags: Municipal, Large Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

Distribution depot keeps trucks rolling

In Louisiana, a large-scale inventory distribution center for a global retailer was plagued by a leak near its loading docks. The suspected source of the leak was a 12" ductile iron pipe section with numerous bends that was buried under 8 feet of concrete. Three failed attempts were made to locate the leak by a local leak detection company, with an estimated excavation cost of $15,000 per dry hole. Echologics leak detection experts successfully pinpointed the leak within an hour of being on site using the LeakFinderST™ correlator.

Tags: Manufacturing, Small Diameter Leak Detection, Distribution

NRW program secures early wins

Jalur Cahaya Sdn. Bhd. (JCSB), a leading environmental engineering company, is working with Echologics in Malaysia. Using the EchoShore®-M leak detection technology, a cost-effective solution to rapidly survey long distances of transmission main, over 20 local technicians with no prior leak detection experience were trained in the new technology and deployed in the field within weeks. In the first three months (including the training period) of the EchoShore-M technology program, over 200km of pipeline was surveyed. JCSB discovered a total of 22 leaks with an estimated combined volume of 2.79 Ml/d.

Tags: Private Water, Large Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

Monitoring an airport water supply line

As part of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Global City Teams Challenge, EchoShore®-TX permanent leak monitoring nodes have been installed near one of the busiest airports in the United States: Hartsfield–Jackson International Airport in Atlanta. The objective of the project is to detect and repair leaks before they have a significant impact on infrastructure and reliable service. “We are figuring out where leaks are happening before infrastructure is compromised and before roads crumble,” said Lillian Govus, Department of Watershed Management in a recent news article. The smart nodes were installed in purpose-built chambers provided by the utility.

Tags: Airport, Large Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

Army base targets aging pipe infrastructure

As part of an infrastructure assessment project on a large army support and training facility, ePulse® technology was selected to inspect numerous sections of 6" and 16" cast iron pipe from over 30 different areas around the base. The water distribution system was installed in the 1950s, and is owned and operated by the Army. The condition assessment project identified numerous sections of pipe with significant degradation, and two leaks were identified with an estimated combined loss of 34,600 litres of water per day. Because the ePulse approach is non-intrusive with pipe condition assessment and leak detection offered in a single step, work was completed quickly and with no disruption to base operations.

Tags: Military Base, Condition Assessment, Distribution

Fixed monitoring platform identifies transmission main leak

In Southeast Asia, an EchoShore®-TX technology installation identified a leak early in its formation on a 28" steel main running alongside a major 4-lane highway. The acoustic monitoring nodes initially captured a faint noise anomaly within the main, and Echologics' leak detection engineers were able to monitor its steady progression. Local utility crews were notified of the presence of the leak, and quickly responded and verified that a valve had begun to fail and was steadily leaking water. The leak was discovered and repaired while it was still small, demonstrating the sensitivity and accuracy of the EchoShore-TX technology.

Tags: Municipal, Large Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

Industrial fire protection line inspection

In Texas, a large industrial facility was plagued by a water leak in its fire-protection system. Approximately 50 gallons of water per minute was being lost from the high pressure line and flooding sections of roadway at the facility. Despite the best efforts of facility staff to locate the leak-including digging a 30-foot trench in the suspected location of the leak-operations staff were unsuccessful in pinpointing the source. The facility owner engaged Echologics to locate the leak before the plant was faced a possible shutdown due to the leak.  Echologics field engineers inspected several sections of the cast iron main, ranging in size from 12" to 16", and found the leak in just three hours. Based on this rapid result, Echologics was contracted to inspect the remaining fire protection lines at the facility.

Tags: Chemical Refinery, Small Diameter Leak Detection, Distribution

Transmission main leak detection

As part of a multi-year asset management program, Echologics has inspected more than 60 miles of large diameter transmission mains for a city in Ontario, Canada. Echologics' proven acoustic correlation technology is inspecting the network for the presence of leaks, which consists of pre-stressed concrete cylinder pipe (PCCP) and metallic mains ranging in size from 16" to 90". In addition to leak detection, Echologics field engineers are gathering information about the location and operability of access chambers. The field engineers capture multiple data points, including valve information, GPS coordinates, videos, and photos supplied to the city for use in its GIS system.

Tags: Municipal, Large Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

Leak pinpointed at a large bottling plant

In China, a large beverage bottling plant was losing approximately 40,000 gallons per day of treated supply water. Service crews had been searching for the leak for several weeks, but could not locate the leak due to the facility's complex piping, and the fact that the plant operations created a large amount of background noise. An Echologics field crew with the LeakFinder correlator was called to the site and located the leak within a day pinpointed underneath a section of concrete roadway surrounding the plant. Based on the rapid response and result, the company purchased LeakFinder™ correlators for its service crews, which have used the technology to locate leaks in other plants throughout China.

Tags: Food & beverage, Small Diameter Leak Detection, Distribution

Condition assessment for distribution mains

In Western Canada, a utility was experiencing an increased number of water main leaks and breaks in a specific section of its distribution system, comprised mainly of asbestos cement and cast iron pipe. To help prioritize replacement, the city turned to ePulse® condition assessment technology to inspect two sections of 6” pipe. The testing identified pipe wall deterioration from nominal thicknesses, and the utility validated the results via spot excavations.

Tags: Municipal, Condition Assessment, Distribution

Transmission main monitoring in Nevada

The Las Vegas Valley Water District (LVVWD) installed the EchoShore®-TX leak detection platform to monitor a 30-inch transmission main for the development of the leaks. Installed in the 1960s, the main and supplies up to 7.5 million gallons of water per day to resorts, casinos, and attractions along the Las Vegas Strip. The monitoring platform was installed and commissioned in just over two weeks, with no service interruptions or impact to street traffic. The EchoShore-TX platform combines proven acoustic leak detection technology with leading-edge wireless connectivity and visual end-user dashboards to create a cost-effective monitoring solution.

Tags: Municipal, Small Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

Asbestos cement pipe assessment

In British Columbia, a municipal district was searching for a strategic approach to plan the replacement of 22 miles of asbestos cement water mains. The district selected ePulse® technology to conduct the inspections, which revealed that 80% of pipes had a significant remaining service life, with the remaining sections being prioritized for replacement based on actual condition. The district validated ePulse results using random coupon sampling throughout the water network. As a result, the district created a reliable, multi-year plan that optimized capital investment plans.

Tags: Municipal, Condition Assessment, Distribution

Optimizing pipe replacement

In Washington State, a proactive utility selected ePulse technology to validate pipe replacement recommendations, which were based on remaining economic life models. ePulse® technology was selected, based upon the short time in which field inspections could be completed, and the ability of the technology to conduct analysis without service interruption to customers. Using a strategic asset management plan and the information provided by ePulse technology, the utility was able to further optimize pipe replacement timing and reduce its main replacement budget from $18 million to $9 million.

Tags: Municipal, Condition Assessment, Distribution

Transmission main monitoring during construction

Construction of residential apartment towers in California required pile-driving steel beams near a 24-inch main, and the local utility wanted to ensure the critical asset was not damaged. The utility selected the EchoShore®-TX platform to monitor the transmission main for the development of leaks over a 12-month period due to its ease of installation and rapid commissioning schedule. Monitoring nodes were installed along the main in shallow chambers.

Tags: Construction, Large Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

Water loss reduction efforts come up big

After outfitting several hundred fire hydrants with the EchoShore®-DX technology nodes for leak detection, utility staff in the first few months were able to quickly locate nearly a dozen leaks in their distribution system. As an unintended bonus, the advanced acoustic sensors were able to identify an acoustic anomaly through a 12” T-connection off of a 36-inch transmission main. It was confirmed as a large leak on the transmission main. The transmission main was several feet away from the monitored 12-inch line, and was not connected to the distribution main in the vicinity of the leak. This new leak detection monitoring platform is enabling the utility to reduce water loss, and to optimize their approach to leak detection and repairs.

Tags: Private Water, Small Diameter Leak Detection, Distribution

Assessing buried pipe condition after a hurricane

In the wake of a major hurricane on the east coast of the United States, ePulse® technology was selected to inspect nearly two miles of a 16” cement mortar-lined ductile iron main that feeds the distribution system. ePulse condition assessment verified that no leaks were present on the main, and identified several sections of pipe with distress. Ultrasonic spot-testing validated the distressed areas, and a follow-up investigation determined the cause to be related to manufacturing defects. ePulse technology enabled system operators to quickly and efficiently capture data about the pipe, and target the deployment of intrusive condition assessment technologies as required.

Tags: Municipal, Condition Assessment, Transmission

LeakFinder-ST™ demonstrates versatility in Malaysia

A leading private water company in Malaysia has outfitted several of its field leak detection teams with LeakFinder-ST correlation equipment. With increased acoustic sensitivity and advanced processing algorithms, leak detection crews are able to find smaller leaks on a wide variety of pipe material -  including PVC – and to differentiate and locate multiple leaks in close proximity to each other. In some cases where pipe access-points were not available, crews simply placed acoustic sensors on the ground above the water main to successfully locate leaks.

Tags: Private Water, Small Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

Leak identified at its inception

An installation of the EchoShore®-DX fixed monitoring platform successfully identified and monitored a growing leak that conventional leak detection approaches could not – avoiding a costly pipe failure. Once excavated, a closer examination revealed a long crack in the bottom of the pipe beginning in the bell, saturating the soil directly underneath the pipe at a steady five gallons per minute.

Tags: Private Water, Small Diameter Leak Detection, Distribution

Monitoring a transmission main with no redundancy

In Ontario, Canada, EchoShore®-TX monitoring nodes have been installed on a non-redundant, 60” transmission main feeding a fast growing residential area. The critical main runs through a rural area and up a significant elevation before reaching its destination; any service outages would have a major impact. EchoShore-TX is monitoring for leaks and static pressure changes to help the utility better understand the impacts of its pumping operations on the main.

Tags: Municipal, Large Diameter Leak Detection, Transmission

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