UK Tech Collaboration Unveils World-First Water Leak Location Powered by the Cloud

Victoria Edwards - FIDO Tech - World Water-Tech North America
Victoria Edwards, CEO, FIDO TECH

Tracking down underground water leaks just got easier thanks to a breakthrough in the use of cloud computing.

FIDO Cloud Correlation is a new technique which uses FIDO AI in the cloud to simplify and cut the cost of leak location on any network and, in tests, is accurate to within a metre.

The technique – the result of an ongoing collaborative innovation partnership between FIDO Tech Ltd and United Utilities – reduces room for human error and eliminates the need for additional specialist equipment.

Simple free* palm-sized samplers called FIDO Bugs collect all the acoustic data, removing the need for multiple, proprietary devices. Super accurate analysis is done by FIDO AI in the cloud, with instant results direct to an engineer’s phone.

Water firm United Utilities, which serves seven million people in the north west of England, has a track record of driving down leakage and leakage innovation. Its development partnership with FIDO Tech emerged from its respected Innovation Lab in 2019.

CEO of FIDO Tech, Victoria Edwards said Cloud Correlation would do for leak location what FIDO AI had already done for accurate leak analysis and leak-sizing.

“AI has removed human error from acoustic and kinetic leak data analysis because extraneous noises, or sounds below the threshold of human hearing, don’t matter. Plus, it can tell a leak’s size just by listening. No human, or any other tech, can do that.

“With Cloud Correlation, FIDO AI uses this knowledge to automatically decide which sequence from a range of complex calculations will give the most accurate result. The phenomenal computing power of the cloud is what enables this. It is beyond the capability of an independent device in the street. With no need to enter any technical, location or pipe material data, there is no need for specialist training.”

Where GIS network data is also available, FIDO will auto-calculate the distance between assets further removing the need for human interaction.

Leakage Technical Manager for United Utilities Paul Parr said: “As a leakage manager I am always pushing the boundaries on technology to help us in our drive to be more efficient and accurate when marking leaks for our repair teams, whilst keeping our teams as safe as possible. I never thought I would see the day where our technicians had a pocket correlator, but it is here. The power of Cloud Correlation will help us become more efficient on site and drive leakage down.”

FIDO Cloud Correlation is the latest function of FIDO AI, a deep-learning neural network which has become one of the most successful alumni of United Utilities’ much-heralded Innovation Lab.

Now with utility clients across four continents, FIDO Tech was recently named the UK’s top Tech Innovator by KPMG and will compete for the title of Global Tech Innovator at the Web Summit in Lisbon on November 2.

*FIDO Bugs come free with a FIDO AI subscription.

How does Cloud Correlation work?

Any two FIDO Bugs are tapped together and dropped magnetically onto any accessible asset either side of a leak. Each drop takes under 90 seconds.

The Bugs’ simultaneous audio samples are transmitted straight to FIDO AI in the cloud using a smartphone app. The exact location of the leak between the two Bugs comes back to the app in seconds.

*FIDO Bugs come free with a FIDO AI subscription and provide instant smart acoustic sampling capability on any network.

Used in multiples, a single overnight logging session delivers a complete area leakage profile as a heatmap. They never need calibrating and can be left in situ up to three years in full operational mode without a battery change.