An energy optimisation system uses predictive software to

automatically control network pumping stations based on real-

time flow and pressure data. This process accounts for such

factors as energy tariffs, water demand, source production

costs, and storage requirements. Control can be advisory only, 

relying on operators to action the changes required, or fully

automated. An energy optimisation system can also be used for planning purposes by providing managers with optimum scenarios (e.g. simulating storage costs for a new storage facility). By selecting the most appropriate pump or pumps to operate, an energy optimisation system minimises cost through alignment of energy use to the lowest cost energy tariff periods.


Utilsing a SCADA/Telemetry system to provide incoming real-time data and outgoing operational commands, an energy optimisation system remotely controls pumps and flow/pressure control valves. It interfaces to energy providers for tariff information, mandatory in the cases where energy is procured in real-time or day-ahead markets. An energy optimisation system can also integrate with hydraulic models to predict network hydraulic behaviour and energy consumption.


Analytical software optimises operation schedules for a defined future period, typically the next 24 to 48 hours though this may be longer. An intuitive online user interface enables operators to monitor network performance, interact with schedules and enter operational constraints (e.g. pump outages for maintenance or failure). Reporting interface tools further allow managers to track performance, analyse constraint options or plan for future maintenance.





Measurable and intangible benefits to be achieved from implementing an energy optimisation solution include:


  • Reduced energy cost – Average reductions of 15%+ are typical

  • Reduced energy consumption, and hence GHG reductions – 3% to 6% energy efficiency improvements are typical

  • Improved customer service – Optimised operation ensures water is delivered consistently, even when unplanned maintenance makes this difficult

  • Improved water quality – Enforcing storage tank turn-over and production flow rate change limits is often part of the optimisation process

  • Increased visibility – Of the KPIs across your entire water network

  • Better planning and investments decisions





To assess the suitability of an energy optimisation solution in a particular system, utilities should first carry out a series of tasks, including:


  • Confirm availability of telemetry data and remote control via SCADA – typically tank level feedback every 15 minutes and remote start/stop control of pumps, valves etc.

  • Identify constraints through a desktop study (e.g. tank operating limits, production flow rate change limits, customer demand vs usable storage)

  • Check completeness and accuracy of strategic mains hydraulic model

  • Gather SCADA data on tank levels, pump operation, flows and pressures for a two year period to allow hydraulic model calibration and creation of seasonal diurnal demand curves

  • Identify opportunities in current and alternative energy tariffs offered

  • Determine if energy incentive programs are available to fund projects

  • Identify targeted pumps, control valves and control devices

  • Understand and have plans for the culture change process that optimised operations is likely to require