Pilot Project

Oasen is the main supplier of drinking water to approximately 750,000 people in and around the vibrant town of Gouda, NL. Being one of the most advanced and technologically verse suppliers, they want to utilize 3S Antriebe and 3S remote control smart valve actuators to actively manage their distribution network. 

To localize leakages, Oasen currently uses the “step testing”method, which is a systematic closing of valves. As such, the water flow in a pre-defined area - the district metering area (DMA) -  can be influenced so that the water  flows directly toward the leakage. All data will be collected in a digital model (EPANET) which will determine the exact location. With this method the leakage can be detected at the street level. Since the valves need to be closed by hand during night hours, this is a long lasting process each week. The goal therefore is Immediate Detection, Localisation and Response to leakages.


The implementation of wireless electric valve actuators will reduce the total timespan until operators respond to leaks from currently about 2 months to 10 days. The two automated pilot sections supply 1,175,815 m3 of water per year. With 20 valves being automated, this equals to an average supply volume of 58,790 m3 per automated valve. The current annual share of losses in the pilot section os the Gouda network is 8% of supplied water what is comparatively low as network management procedures are already quite advanced.


Due to the minimum night flows, that result from tiny leakages that are very hard to detect, even in the best managed water grid a bottom share of water losses will remain, that is usually calculated at 3%. Cutting the leakage control time to 20%, our technology is able to bring down the remaining 5 percentage points (8%-3%)down to 1%. The resulting targeted leakage share for Gouda is 4%, the half of the current 8%. 

For the first time LIFE SmartWater will enable the cost-efficient automation and control of existing water network hardware while at the same time enabling sensor data collection and processing in one unit. This smart approach facilitates the establishment of District Metering and Control Areas (DMCAs) which allow for the monitoring AND shaping of the water network flow situation in a defined area of the network. This will also boost the wide implementation and further development of leakage control and pressure management measures which will have great positive impact on water savings and energy consumption. 

The aim of the pilot project is to demonstrate the large scale application of a new wireless valve actuator technology in combination with sensor technology in industrial environment for the first time. LIFE SmartWater is a “close-to-market” project and will demonstrate its wide applications in this pilot region.