The City of Casey is a local government area in Victoria, Australia in the outer south-eastern suburbs of Melbourne. Casey is Victoria’s most populous municipality, with a June 2018 population of 340,419. It has an area of 409 square kilometres (157.9 sq mi). The municipality operates several redundant landfill sites. These sites are landfills that are no longer operating, there are however still environmental and operational requirements to consider while owning/maintaining these sites.
The EPA (Environmental protection Authority Victoria) provides licensing to landfill management operators. These conditions are contained in EPA Publication 1323.
As the license holder Casey are under obligations to meet these conditions. One of these conditions included the monitoring of settlement pond discharge over time. Their requirement was to ensure that the discharge was completed over a fixed time and that the instantaneous flow did not exceed their license conditions at any point during this event.
To solve this problem, Casey installed flow meters. Historically these meters were monitored manually during each discharge event. To bring this system in line with the sites other “smart” initiatives, these flow meters were connected to a MHM4 (Machine Health Monitor) Gateway. The MHM4 counts pulses from the meter and sends this data wirelessly. Each pulse accounts for a certain amount of volume pumped. To add additional insight to the system, a fourth ultrasonic level sensor was connected to an intermediate discharge tank. The information collected by the sensors and meters was aggregated by the MHM4 unit and sent via LoRaWAN to the site’s LoRaWAN gateway and into AlphaX Cloud.
The flow data was made available via the AlphaX Cloud platform for historical reference to anyone, anywhere, including the EPA if required. The site set limits on the flow rates and created real-time alerts that were emailed the moment the flow exceeded their pre-sets. The data was also ported into Casey’s custom landfill management software.
The system has detected several outliers and proven effective at determining flow inconsistencies. Future plans for the smart metering system include upgrading the level transducer for a more accurate variant to give even greater insight into tank levels during discharge. The site also has plans to control other equipment on site during discharge events and based on the discharge volume.
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