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No water, no beer, no Oktoberfest!

Posted: Tuesday 2nd November 2010

Munich is the capital city of Bavaria, Germany. The city is famous for the Oktoberfest which was first held in the city in 1810 as a community celebration for the royal wedding of Prince Ludwig of Bavaria and Princess Therese of Saxony Hildburghausen. Munich is located on the River Isar north of the Bavarian Alps and is the third largest city in Germany, after Berlin and Hamburg. There are approximately 1.35 million people living within city limits, while the Munich Metropolitan Area is home to over 5 million people.

Responsibility for the drinking water supply within Munich is undertaken by Stadtwerke München (Munich City Utilities – SWM). SWM customers receive all necessary infrastructure services from one company including the safe and permanent supply of energy and drinking water. Concern about rising levels of leakage and increasing demand for water within the city persuaded SWM to look for a permanent monitoring system to allow them to detect and fix leaks and monitor for re-occurrence. After all, during Oktoberfest about 6 million visitors consume 6 million litres of beer! It’s a lot of beer which needs a lot of water to produce!

It was against this backdrop that FAST GmbH were asked to supply the LeakMaster Radio based Noise Logging System. This contract came about as a result of an intensively competitive bidding process involving suppliers of leak detection systems and equipment worldwide. 500 AZ, (Acoustic Zone), 100 Noise loggers were ordered and have now been deployed by SWM. The AZ1000 loggers measure and analyse leak-noise during the lowest consumption period overnight, normally between 2am and 4am. The data is stored and then transmitted by the logger. The design lifetime of the logger battery is 5-7 years. A van or car equipped with the radio receiving unit is the second half of the LeakMaster system. A drive-by operation collects the data automatically and the results are displayed visually and acoustically pinpointing any leaks.

The LeakMaster system will allow SWM and other companies like then to confidently monitor important parts of the network in Munich and allow them to take prompt action of there are any leaks – thus allowing continuity of supply to consumers of water and beer alike!

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