New Plumbing Solutions

Wise water technologies saving Victoria’s schools with New Plumbing Solutions

New Plumbing Solutions is at the forefront of digital water metering technologies. It won the latest tender to maintain the highly regarded SWEP water efficiency program running in 1,800 schools across Victoria.

CompNow were engaged to design an API that would link the meter data, NPS and the real-time water usage dashboards at each school.

Established in 2009, New Plumbing Solutions (NPS) provides high quality, safety-first plumbing maintenance & civil works for water and sewerage to government & commercial customers. NPS is Australia’s largest specialised water metering installation and maintenance practitioner.

The Challenge

NPS needed a piece of middleware to translate water usage data between the collectors at the schools, NPS’ client software and the SWEP dashboard at each school.

The Solution

CompNow engineered an API based solution for the platform’s data transfers.

The Benefits
  • API design crucial to tender obligation fulfilment
  • Efficiency API saving water as a precious resource
  • Real-time information transfers
  • Fast identification of leaks, saving damage, waste & costs

We’re proud to be working with Compnow to support Victorian schools in the drive to better manage their plumbing asset infrastructure and teach the value of our precious water to students.

Adam Nicholson Head of Utilities & Digital Services
New Plumbing Solutions

The Challenge

New Plumbing Solutions has created an industry leading position through its customer first approach and creative responses to all aspects of the business – covering NPS’ onsite practices, its operations and management, as well as the development and adoption of advanced technologies.

Being at the forefront of digital water metering solutions, “NPS delivers compelling value and strong customer outcomes from our certified systems and processes. We’ve encountered every type of problem and found the appropriate solution for every type of water meter,” says Adam Nicholson, Head of Utilities & Digital Services at New Plumbing Solutions.

Leveraging that expertise, NPS successfully tendered for the Victorian Department of Education & Training’s innovative School Water Efficiency Program (SWEP). The contract saw NPS take over the management of the program’s data for 1,800 schools across the State.

Having won, NPS were then given the detailed specifications of the project. The schools in the SWEP program has telco data collectors at each water meter.

Adam explains: “What we needed was a piece of middleware to translate the data between the collectors and the client software at our end, which delivers the real-time meter reading information to the SWEP software’s dashboard at each school”.

The Solution

As part of a long term, trusted partner relationship, NPS briefed CompNow on the SWEP program’s commitments. Under the efficiency driven scope of work, CompNow developers researched the requirements of the software driving the points of data transfer from collection to reading.

The solution was an API (Application Programming Interface), a set of defined rules that determines how applications and devices communicate and process the data transfers between systems.

“We’ve done API integrations with CompNow before. They’re a deceptively simple, small, but essential part of the puzzle. CompNow had to gain an understanding of the SWEP software pieces and do due diligence on their processes, before assessing which of the available API keys would be the best fit,” Adam says.

The API CompNow developed gathers the water meter data from the Telstra IoT Cumulocity platform via CSV and sends the measurements to the Luminary web designed dashboards for delivery into the school’s FTP folder.

The data collectors record usage at 15-minute intervals throughout the day. The API instructs the automatic transfer of data, taking place every 24-hours, which then becomes visible in the SWEPs portal at each school.


The Benefits

This customised water usage monitoring solution was a small design task, but crucial to NPS fulfilling its SWEP tender obligations.

Adam says the immediacy of the dashboard information helps schools in two areas: “They have greater control as they can quickly identify any leaks, which saves costs in both usage and repairs. If, for example, the reading is never at zero, the likelihood is that there’s a leak. Then the school can engage services to discover where the problem is. And the savings are measurable. Prior to SWEP, schools could only pick up usage or leak issues when their quarterly bill arrived, or deep damage became apparent.

“The graphic mapping of when and where water is used across the school also supports educating students of all ages in valuing water and being wiser in how they use one of our country’s most precious resources,” Adam says.

This digital metering initiative from the Victorian government is now being assessed by other State education departments. NPS and CompNow, with their nationwide footprints are positioned to assist schools throughout the country to expand their water wise activities.

Adam says: “Digital metering is essential for Australia’s management of water usage into the future. It’s not just about schools. NPS actively educates consumers, governments and businesses on more efficient resource monitoring and the benefits of faster responses to infrastructure breakdowns.

“Water is precious and finite. With CompNow’s help, we now have the tools to help us better use and protect it.”

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