ElectronicHousehold Water Meter
ReportNo WSAA 59
A lowcost Electronic Household Water Meter has been successfully designed and twoprototypes have been field trialled for five and a half weeks. The electronicmeters contain a processing unit and a wire base communication scheme. Themodule that was created fits easily within a standard Davies Shephard 20mm KGGwater meter. Efficient design and component selection has allowed theElectronic Household Water Meter to have an operational life of over 10 yearswith a single lithium battery.
Byincorporating a processing unit within the meter, extra facilities can beincluded to add value to the meter. The main benefit is the use of theElectronic Household Water Meter in a full Automatic Meter Reading System.Other advantages are the ability to have flow correction for ageing watermeters which can improve accuracy over existing water meters. Tamper detectioncan also be added to detect possible fraud and if the communications cable is cutthe information is still retained within the electronic water meter.
Thechallenges associated with the power consumption requirements and communicationmethods for the Electronic Household Water Meter were highlighted during theinvestigation, design and trial of the prototype units. The trials revealedthat the methods of lightning protection will need to be investigated in futuredesigns.
Theintroduction of electronics into the water meter has suggested that productioncosts can be lowered so that the Electronic Household Water Meter could becomea replacement for the standard water meter on the basis of cost rather thantechnology. This would facilitate the introduction of a full Automatic MeterReading System which is seen as too costly at this stage.
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