PUB to explore use of drones for surveillance, water management

PUB to explore use of drones for surveillance, water management

Singapore's national water agency is exploring the use of drones for surveillance and water management purposes, in addition to testing the use of robot swans to monitor water quality in reservoirs.

SINGAPORE: PUB is exploring the use of drones for surveillance and water management purposes, in addition to testing the use of robot swans to monitor water quality in reservoirs.

Since April this year, Singapore’s national water agency has been conducting trial flights of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles – commonly known as drones – to look into the possibility of using them for general surveillance at Marina Reservoir.

The drones will help PUB obtain aerial footage for monitoring purposes and act as a deterrent for illegal activities, the agency said on Thursday (Jun 30).

PUB is also considering deploying the small, unmanned crafts – which would be fitted with multiple advanced sensors and cameras – at underground sewers. The drones would be able to navigate the tunnels without GPS and in complete darkness, while capturing 360-degree images in areas difficult for people to reach.

ROBOT SWANS TO MONITOR WATER QUALITY

The PUB also announced earlier that it is testing the use of robot swans to monitor the water quality of reservoirs. Jointly developed by PUB, the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) Environmental Research Institute and the Tropical Marine Science Institute, the New Smart Water Assessment Network (NUSwan) will be able to provide more accurate and timely monitoring of water quality in reservoirs.

The robot swans can also be deployed in flocks for more effective real-time monitoring, and can blend in well with its surroundings, while helping to lower the cost of water sampling, PUB said, adding that three swans have been successfully tested for use.

NEW WATER TECHNOLOGIES

The drones and robot swans are some of the new water technologies showcased by PUB at this year's Singapore International Water Week.

Other technologies PUB will feature include the Smart Water Grid, an islandwide wireless sensor network that minimises water leaks, and a fully operational Silt Imagery Detection System to ensure the smooth running of Singapore’s waterways.

The event brings industry experts and delegates together in Singapore to pursue business opportunities, showcase the latest water technologies, as well as share industry best practices.

Now in its seventh run, the annual event will focus on present and emerging smart water technologies, including data-driven technologies that support various aspects of water management.

Singapore International Water Week will run from Jul 10 to 14.

Source: CNA/ww