With 40 of the 50 U.S. states facing water shortages in the next decade, according to a U.S. General Accounting Office report, it is time to accelerate the use of Internet of Things (IoT) technology to help conserve water.
With this in mind, the LoRa™ Alliance is standardising low power wide area networks (LPWAN) to easily connect water meters, leak detection sensors, moisture sensors and smart sprinklers from multiple vendors to accelerate conservation and ease the looming water crisis. The LoRa Alliance and members is exhibiting these solutions at the American Water Works Association (AWWA) Annual Conference & Exhibition (ACE) June 8-10 at the Anaheim Convention Center.
LoRaWAN™ networks also have the capacity to connect many other low-cost, battery-operated IoT applications such as trash monitoring, smart parking, street lighting and supply chain management optimisation, including propane tank monitoring to optimise efficiency, save costs, reduce waste and conserve energy to help reduce carbon footprints.
The technology utilised in a LoRaWAN network is designed to connect low-cost, battery-operated sensors over long distances in harsh environments that were previously too challenging or cost prohibitive to connect. With its unique penetration capability, a LoRa gateway deployed on a building or tower can connect to sensors more than ten miles away or to water meters deployed underground or in basements.
“We are excited about being part of the LoRa Alliance and to help make the Internet of Things a reality for water systems across North America,” said Hassan Ali, vice president and general manager of Mueller Systems. “By leveraging the IoT, we can help water utilities improve the service they offer their customers and increase the connectivity of all city services.”
The technology is designed to easily achieve multi-year battery life, and the networks are architected to be scalable and to have very high capacity. A standardised multi-tenant or public network will significantly lower the cost of connectivity and drive volume deployments for IoT applications such as water leak detection and smart agriculture.
The LoRa™ Alliance was formed in February 2015 and is the fastest growing alliance to standardise Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWAN) being deployed around the world to enable IoT, machine-to-machine (M2M), smart city, industrial and conservation applications.
The LoRa Alliance was formed by technology industry, including Cisco, IBM, Semtech and major telecommunications companies, and already has more than 60 members. The Alliance members will collaborate to drive the success of the LoRaWAN by sharing knowledge and experience to ensure interoperability between nationwide networks and others deploying the technology.
The LoRaWAN protocol offers unique and unequaled benefits in terms of bi-directionality, security, mobility and accurate localisation that are not addressed by other LPWAN technologies. These benefits will enable the diverse use cases and business models that will enable deployments of LPWAN IoT networks globally.