Intelligent Water Systems challenge seeks solutions to issues facing water utilities

11-04-2018

A first-of-its-kind event is challenging participants to use innovation and data to help solve some of the most difficult issues facing water and wastewater utilities. 

The Intelligent Water Systems Challenge, hosted by the Leaders Innovation Forum for Technology (LIFT), a joint effort of the Water Environment Federation (WEF) and the Water Research Foundation (WRF), are offering a chance for utilities that would like to submit a challenge to be solved. Utilities must apply by the 23rd of March 23, and the deadline for teams to register for the challenge will be the 6th of April. 

The Intelligent Water Challenge offers students, professionals and technology experts an opportunity to combine their talents and innovation with tools and data to help utilities better understand the dynamics of complex systems for making better decisions. General problem statements and example datasets, along with a series of informational webinars on datasets and underlying systems, will be provided to participants. Teams will be given descriptions of example scenarios along with datasets. Scenarios will focus on collection systems, wastewater treatment systems, drinking water treatment systems, source water/watershed, and distribution networks. 

The challenge will run from the 9th of April to the 3rd of September, and teams with exceptional and innovative solutions will present their results for final judging in New Orleans, Louisiana, United States (U.S.) on the 1st of October at WEFTEC 2018, WEF’s 91st annual technical exhibition and conference. The winning teams will receive cash awards, including a US$25,000 top prize sponsored by Xylem, Inc.   

“As we continue to support and promote innovation in the water sector, we are also looking for ways to integrate practical applications,” WEF Executive Director, Eileen O’Neill, said. “Our hope is that the Intelligent Water Systems Challenge will demonstrate the value of intelligent water systems to utilities and help foster the adoption of smart water technologies.”

The Intelligent Water Systems Challenge is also supported by the American Water Works Association (AWWA), the Smart Water Networks Forum (SWAN), the International Society of Automation’s (ISA) Water and Wastewater Division, Cleveland Water Alliance, The International Society of Automation, The Water Council, Water Technology Acceleration Project (WaterTAP), and BlueTech Research.