Sensors in the water and wastewater industries: A $2bn market by 2030

In the next decade, digital water technologies will be the next big innovation. With an industry predicted to be over $2Bn in 2030, this is a wide-reaching opportunity for many and a market which has a global impact. In order to create an efficient and optimised system, water and wastewater networks must find quick and decisive answers to many questions – where is the network leaking? Can we accurately predict our customers water use? How can our processes be optimised? These questions can be answered by the implementation of sensors, creating a digital, smart, water network. The report “Digital Water Networks 2020-2030” from IDTechEx aims to provide a holistic overview of the opportunities available within the future digitisation of the water and wastewater network markets.

In order to better understand the use of water in the home and in industry, it needs to be tracked, and for it to be tracked, sensors are required. It would be reasonable to assume, that in the 21st Century, many water companies use sensors in many different aspects of their water and wastewater networks to monitor their pipes across the entire network, for ease of leak identification, and for pressure regulation for example. In reality, this is far from the case in some countries.

In the United Kingdom, for example, one of the major methods for monitoring water during waste-water treatment is through a BOD-5 test. This is a “Biochemical Oxygen Demand” test, and takes 5 days from start to finish. This test is used to indicate the short-term impact on the oxygen levels of the receiving water. The test requires a human to take a measurement, this has to then be sealed and transported to a lab, for subsequent testing and measurement. If required limits are exceeded, the company is then informed, 5 days after the event. This is a slow, and extensive process for a method which is important to identify the cleanliness of the wastewater treatment process. However, this provides an opportunity for new technologies and products to come to market to solve these problems. With no current solution, there are a range of niches which companies can operate in and secure a market position in a market which is predicted to be over $2Bn worldwide by 2030.

The IDTechEx report, “Digital Water Networks 2020-2030”, covers both the water and wastewater industry, and introduces a number of the technologies which are currently used in the industry, and some of the novel emerging technologies which are being put in place to overcome some of the historical measurement techniques. “Digital Water Networks 2020-2030” gives comprehensive information on various processes, sensors, in systems offered by the top players in the water and wastewater treatment markets. The image below highlights some of the different areas for measurement within the water and wastewater networks. The holistic overview includes industry analysis, a detailed summary of how each of the sensor groups can impact specific aspects of both the water and wastewater industries, and where the opportunities and hype will take this exciting technology in the coming decade.

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