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Case Study: Turbid Stormwater Solutions January 29, 2014 | by

Disrupting the Construction Market with a Remote Stormwater Treatment System Built on Xively


logo CUSTOMER PROFILE
Turbid Stormwater Solutions, based in Australia, provides stormwater management products for mining, landfill and construction sites.

VERTICAL
Construction and Real Estate

BENEFITS

  • Expand market reach with next generation product that eliminates traditional cost barriers
  • Speed up time-to-market by enabling an Internet-connected solution in just two days
  • Reduce cost of customer operations by saving more than 1,000 man hours and AUD$100,000 (US$89,259) annually
  • Enable instant, real-time water quality reports, compared to six weeks with competitive products

Download: Turbid Stormwater Solutions Case Study (PDF)


“Without Xively, we wouldn’t have developed this solution. It would have been too costly and time-prohibitive.”

- Ben Starr, Director, Turbid Stormwater Solutions
Challenge


Removing sediment from runoff so it doesn’t pollute surrounding water can be extremely time-consuming and expensive for construction, mining and landfill operators. With traditional batch treatment methods, workers have to visit each site daily to manually check and record readings to determine whether they meet regulatory requirements. Companies also send employees onsite to chemically treat the basins, often up to 72 times a year at nearly AUD$1,500 per day in labor alone.

Turbid saw an opportunity to help customers remotely monitor and treat site basins. “A few competitors tried offering remote products, but they were built on proprietary technologies that were quite expensive. As a result, they were unaffordable,” said Brett Hocking, IT Manager, Turbid.

Solution


Turbid was familiar with the Internet of Things (IoT)—a way to connect and control sensor-enabled devices in the cloud—and explored building its own IoT-based infrastructure for remote water treatment, but found it wasn’t feasible. “Building it ourselves would have taken about a year and distracted us from our main business. Plus, because it’s not our core competency, any IoT platform we developed would have paled in comparison to what we ultimately found with Xively,” said Hocking.

Turbid looked into several vendors before choosing Xively. “Most solutions turned out to be either too complicated and would have required too much development time, or too light-weight to handle a commercial application like ours. Xively Cloud Services was the exception. Xively provided the capabilities, flexibility and simplicity we needed at a compelling price. And, by taking advantage of Xively Consulting Services, we could benefit from experts who understand what it takes to develop and manage connected solutions that deliver real value,” said Hocking.

It took just two months for Turbid to create a real-time, sensor-based data collection and control solution. Connecting its products to the Xively platform, where data would be stored and normalized, water quality could be reported on, and automatic dosing treatments could be triggered, took only two days.

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Results


turbid1 Expands reach with real-time solution that removes cost barriers
Turbid’s new product will help it break new ground in a market that is clamoring for more efficient operations and enable it to attract more customers. “Xively made it easy for us to go-to-market quickly with a product that eliminates the cost barrier to remote monitoring and control, making a profound impact on our business and our customers,” said Ben Starr, Director, Turbid.
turbid2 Enabled Internet-connected solution in just two days
According to Hocking, “Xively consultants were brilliant at helping us strategize ways to enable new capabilities. They really helped us cut development time.” Turbid also credits the Xively platform’s rich features for facilitating IoT connectivity. “Live logging of connections made it easy to see if our prototype was hitting the Xively cloud,” Hocking said. “Enabling connectivity was simple thanks to all the libraries Xively publishes.”
turbid3 Slashes cost of customer operations, while boosting efficiencies and quality
Customers largely eliminate the need to send workers on-site to manually obtain readings and treat stormwater. This can save over 1,000 man hours and AUD$100,000 (US$89,259) a year in labor costs alone and ensure the accuracy of readings. In addition, instead of waiting six weeks before receiving water quality reports from competitors, Turbid customers can monitor and report on basins in real-time and take immediate corrective actions, minimizing the impact on water quality.

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