The systems monitor water levels in rainwater tanks and release it at a controlled rate
Through an industry-led project, Australia has opened the floodgates to intelligent rainwater tank systems. Talking Tanks monitor water levels in a rainwater tank and automatically release water at a controlled rate if required. The system pre-empts the release of water from set points that are chosen by the user, according to rain or storm predictions, which are received via a communications link to the Bureau of Meteorology.
“The system automatically releases water, creates storage capacity and prevents overflows of storm water — with unique self-learning, these intelligent systems are paving the way forward for efficient management of rainwater tanks,” said Business Development Manager iota, Adrian Blinman.
iota forms the commercial arm of South East Water — one of the leading water retailers in Victoria, Australia — which promotes innovative ideas and proven technologies for use across a range of sectors.
“Storm water can increase the risk of overflow into urban waterways and in some cases carry litter and pollutants or cause erosion. Customers are able to pre-set the required tank water levels and control this remotely through the use of an Internet connection or even a smartphone, taking the guesswork out of rainwater management,” Blinman said.
As varying roof and tank combinations react differently to the volume and intensity of a downpour, the software has been designed to learn and self-correct following each rain event. An advanced algorithm was developed to analyze how successful the capture of rainwater was and adjust accordingly for future events.
“With this intelligent technology on board, users can limit the possibility of storm water overflows and flooding. If rainfall is expected, Talking Tanks will anticipate that draining is required to provide new capacity to capture and hold the incoming storm water,” Blinman said.
Rainwater tanks have become a valuable tool for the catchment and reuse of rainwater, but the tanks also aid in the reduction of the impact of storm water on drainage infrastructure, roads, urban streams and beaches.
“The application of Talking Tanks on a large scale is an effective measure in prolonging the life of existing storm water infrastructure or minimizing the impact of peak flows on natural waterways that form an integral part of a storm water network,” Blinman said.