The Future of Big Data Solutions

In the March/April issue of WEF’s Water Online magazine, Barry Liner (Director of the Water Environment Federation’s Water Science and Engineering Center) and Pam Kenel (Solution Lead for Smart Community & Water Analytics in Black & Veatch’s Smart Integrated Infrastructure Business) discussed some of the drivers and barriers to the adoption of smart water infrastructure and big data solutions. They go on to talk about the great opportunities of harnessing that data.

In their discussion they highlight how cloud-based platforms align well with small and medium sized utilities’ with resource constraints by only requiring a small investment in hardware and software while providing the opportunity for implementation of smart water infrastructure technology and big data solutions. “Cloud-based solutions provided by innovators will help water utilities of all sizes advance smart water infrastructure.”

Barry and Pam go on to point out that smart water utility initiatives are trailing both gas and electric, when it comes to implementation. Mentioning citizen engagement as a method to increase the implementation throughout the water utilities. Specifically, intelligent metering and data analytics allowing utilities to alter the dynamic of education and customer communication about individual water consumption.

For water utilities, the data must be refined into information so that it can motivate either the utility or the customers to take action. They then go on pinpoint some of the various key aspects of a big data platform.

Integration -Integration is critical to have one platform managing the data, as separate silos of data only create separate silos of insight. An integrated solution has to be bigger than one technology.”

With FlowWorks  flexibility, you are able to eliminate any silos and have all your data stored in one place.

Analytics - “Analytics tools are used to analyze the data, providing more sophisticated, accurate, and actionable information.”

In addition to storing your data, FlowWorks significantly improves your ability to transform raw data into actionable information by allowing you to perform real-time analysis, monitor alarms and create reports accessible from virtually any web browser.

Visualization - “Visualization tools bring the information into a form that is understandable by decision makers, be they utility managers, government officials, or customers.”

FlowWorks allows users to graph their data using our high performance and fully interactive data graphing engine to help provide a visual component for all necessary reports and analysis.

Security & Governance - “Security & governance are critical to maintaining sensitive data that must be protected, which is especially important for public sector agencies including many water utilities.”

The FlowWorks online platform offers the latest and highest level security features available for our clients.

With FlowWorks, you are able to check all of these boxes while providing the flexibility to implement projects of any duration. If you would like to find out more about how FlowWorks can help manage your environmental data email or give our office a call 206-859-6999.

Irrigation Districts Benefiting Greatly From Cloud Management Software

The “Bringing Irrigation District Management to the Cloud” article from the April issue of Irrigation Leaders (pages 31-32) highlights how implementing cloud based software solutions can save significant time & money. The article focuses on WaterMaster, who provides cloud-based water accounting, invoicing, water order and delivery tracking.

Like WaterMaster, FlowWorks is a state-of-the-art cloud-based software that does not require a contract and eliminates the hassles of maintaining servers or software while also eliminating the need to upgrade, pay maintenance fees, or purchase tech support. You simply pay as you use the service. If at anytime you are unhappy with the service, you can cancel without any consequential fees. A quote from Curt Landreth, president of Advanced Control Systems, highlights a few of the benefits of a cloud-based system. “The lack of a physical product is the benefit of a cloud-based system. You do not have to maintain software or have high-tech computers or an IT department. All you need is an internet connection.”

The Cloud

Investments in the cloud computing space are continuing to ramp up, with Google targeting 2016 as a pivotal year to broaden its feature set. A report from the Synergy Research Group shows a 28% annualized growth in investments into the continued advancement of the key cloud service and infrastructure segments (Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS), Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS)). Investing in and utilizing cloud technology will only become more prominent in the coming years and will provide greater flexibility, scalability, and better security.

If you have questions about the benefits of using the cloud or what it means for your organization, email or call our office (206) 859-6999. Also, be sure to continue to check the FlowWorks website and blog for the latest news and feature releases. 

An Alternative Method for Industrial Wastewater Treatment

In a study published in the Pertanika Journal of Science and Technology, research done at the Universiti Putra Malaysia discovered that crab shells help remove copper and cadmium from water. Both of which are naturally present throughout the environment but the level of concentration for each can be intensified to toxic levels when going through industrial and agricultural processes.


While there are various wastewater treatment methods that assist with removing these metals, the research done at Universiti Putra Malaysia shows that shells from the Scylla Serrata crab can be used as a biosorbent (biosorbents are used to remove metallic elements from aqueous solutions and are an alternative for chemical and high cost technology). The use of natural biological materials has shown the same efficiency rate with less harm to human health and the environment.

After running numerous trials with water comparable to mining or metal refining wastewater, the study showed that after 6 hours up to 95% of the copper and 85% of the cadmium had been removed. The research team was quoted in the news release from the Pertanika Journal of Science and Technology saying “Crab shells are undeniably suitable absorbents for heavy metals from industrial wastewater.”

Click here to read the whole study

NJWEA Annual Conference


The New Jersey Water Environment Association’s annual conference starts next week!

May 16-20

Bally’s Atlantic City

Atlantic City, NJ

Booth #800

After a successful 100th anniversary conference last year that saw more than 2,400 attendees, this year’s NJWEA conference and exposition promises to be another excellent event. This year’s conference includes over 260 exhibit spaces and breakout sessions covering best practices and industry trends in regards to collections, operations, maintenance and more.

Be sure to stop by the FlowWorks booth to hear about all the great new developments that are in store for the FlowWorks platform in 2016.

For full conference details, click the link below:

WEF Collections Annual Conference

WEF Collections 2016 Logo

The WEF Collections Annual Conference is next week!

May 1-4

Hyatt Regency Atlanta

Atlanta, GA

Booth #115

The WEF Collections conference will include sessions covering a wide range of collection systems issues, including trenchless new construction, odors, combined sewer overflows, integrated planning, modeling, asset management, sewer assessment and rehabilitation, state-of-the-art technologies, regulatory updates, and more.

Be sure to stop by the FlowWorks booth to hear about all the great new developments that are in store for the FlowWorks platform in 2016.

For full conference details, click the link below