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Home » General Applications » Water Leaks

Water Leaks

With CRNS technology and innovative Finapp probes, it is possible to pre-locate water network leaks, monitoring up to 150 km per day, quickly and easily.

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Every year about 30 percent of the water put into aqueducts around the world is lost; in Italy this figure exceeds 40 percent. The cause? Leaks from the pipes.
Millions of € are then invested to find these water leaks by a wide variety of methods. Finapp provides a revolutionary new way to intervene promptly.

Finapp has patented a lightweight, compact probe that can read the cosmic neutrons, that are our messengers about the water content deep in the ground and in real time. The Finapp probes, placed on a dedicated vehicle, as they travel along the roads above the pipes, detect increased moisture in the soil, which is a sign of a potential leak. We then provide the network operator with a Geo-referenced pre-location map of water leaks along pipelines.

Pros and Features

Finapp approach allows to have evident advantages compared to traditional techniques:

  • The speed: depending on the number of probes used, it is possible to travel at up to 50km/h, thus covering 120-150km per day in the busiest urban centers and up to 300km in non-urban areas. The difference with systematic research, capable of investigating 5-10km of network per day, is therefore remarkable!
  • The performance: results show that Finapp pre-location, compared to actual excavation, correctly detects leaks in about 70% of cases.
    The costs: pre-location has significantly lower costs than systematic digging, by about one third.
  • The ease of use: setting the probe in motion is extremely simple, does not require fixed installations, is small in size and does not need an external power supply. It is therefore not operator dependent, as is the case with electro-acoustic instrumentation (geophone).
  • The technique: non-contact, non-destructive and automatic measurement means that no intervention is necessary, no manholes need to be opened, no devices need to be installed, no maintenance is required, it can be installed on public transport, and it does not require a qualified operator.

More detailes

Finapp probes, set in motion, provide a soil moisture map, with a maximum resolution of 10m x 10m, even in an urban environment, since cosmic neutrons are not disturbed by the presence of buildings, asphalt, cars. With the cooperation of some operators, we have developed an artificial intelligence algorithm that has been trained to recognize known water leaks so that they can be detected even on unknown paths.

  • Pre-location is defined in this way because it returns linear road sections, 50-100m long, where the algorithm identifies a possible leak. It will then be necessary to use a correlator to pinpoint the exact location of the leak.
  • Pre-location “highlights” 5-10% of the network where about 70-75% of the leaks insist. Systematic search can then focus on a really small part of the aqueduct, lowering time and cost.

Service features

Finapp provides a turnkey service: manpower, means, data processing are carried out entirely by us. The only pre-requirement is the geo-location of the pipelines, which must be provided by the network operator.

Finapp provides Geo-referenced maps (shape files) in which the sections recognized as “leaky” by our algorithm are highlighted.
Data processing is done entirely by Finapp team, which is why it is possible to customize the output.

FAQ – common questions

What minimum radius can pre-localization have?

The minimum radius is in the order of 10m.

Does it work in cities near the sea?

Yes, the only precaution is to stay far enough from the sea, to be sure that the ground below is not wet by the presence of the sea itself.

How fast can the vehicle with sensor installed go?

The speed depends on the number of probes installed. Typically, we recommend a maximum speed of 30km/h; however, it is possible vary this speed depending on the configurations.

Can the sensor be used in case of rain?

No, rain decreases the sensitivity of the instrument, so it is strongly discouraged.

Can monitoring also be carried out at night and at any time?

Yes, the only reason why we advise against use is rain. Any other weather, season of the year, time of day have, no influence on our probes.

What happens when a drinking water pipe crosses or runs parallel to a sewer pipe?

The Finapp probe can detect the water present in the ground. We are unable to distinguish the cause that led to an increase in soil moisture. For this reason, we cannot determine whether an increase in humidity is caused by a high-water table, a break in the aqueduct or sewer pipes.

How is pre-locating carried out for underground pipes in the mountains with slopes or open pipes in the countryside?

If it is not possible to use a vehicle, it is possible to place a probe inside a backpack or trolley, for hand transport.

It can be used in the city for example in areas with limited traffic?

Yes, it is possible to transport the probe inside a backpack or trolley, accessing narrow streets, or steps etc.

Following a pre-localization, is a conventional assessment recommended or is it done in some other way?

It is advisable to carry out a traditional search with geo-acoustic instrumentation only on the routes pre-localized by Finapp which, on average, cover 3-10% of the entire network.

In cities with skyscrapers, is Cosmic Ray monitoring effective?

Yes, the presence of tall buildings or narrow streets does not influence the reading ability of Finapp probes.

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Meeting customers’ need

At Finapp we are committed to meeting the scientific measurement instrumentation needs of our customers, we enthusiastically help all those who work sustainably and fairly, we support those who advance science and technology for the benefit of humanity. Finapp believes in innovation as well as service.

Do not hesitate to get in touch with us for an appointment, visit, consultation, we will try to answer all your questions trying to suggest some possible innovative solutions.





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