NSSN partners with Sydney Water to solve challenges in the water supply

Experts from the state’s leading universities came together with officials and scientists from Sydney Water last week when the NSW Smart Sensing Network (NSSN) hosted a sandpit event to workshop solutions to some of the most pressing challenges facing Sydney’s water supply.

Every day, Sydney Water supplies fresh drinking water, recycled irrigation water, and wastewater and stormwater services to over five million customers across the greater Sydney, Illawarra and Blue Mountains region. Leaking pipes, water quality, water pressure and meter accuracy are all vital issues that Sydney Water and associated water industry partners grapple with in delivering water services to a massive population.

The workshop focussed on the role that smart sensing can play in these significant challenges and included more than 50 attendees. Sydney Water played a leading role, with active participation from Water NSW, the Water Services Association of Australia, Hunter Water, as well as representatives from water authorities from regional NSW and Victoria.

The NSSN brought together rich expertise from across all six of its member universities (Macquarie, University of Newcastle, UNSW, University of Sydney, UTS and University of Wollongong) in fields as varied as chemistry, physics, engineering and data analytics were present. The CSIRO and state and local government also contributed to the discussions.

Newly appointed NSSN Chief Operating Officer, Nicholas Haskins, expressed that this is exactly what the NSSN was established to do.

“The NSSN combines the brightest minds and research resources of the state to provide solutions to complex challenges in a way that no university working alone can do”, he said. “We work with industry and government to solve sensing challenges that will benefit the people and economy of New South Wales and to also position our state as the leader in smart sensing”.

A number of projects were identified where collaboration between the research community and the wider water industry will bring real benefit. The NSSN and Sydney Water look forward to partnering on a range of projects that will result in positive outcomes for NSW water consumers. 

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