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South Africa’s premier supplier of STS prepayment smart water meters is rolling out its new AquaFlow and AquaData solution to the local and international markets. It offers pre- and post-paid functionality.

Established in 2001, Inzalo Utility Systems currently commands around 90% of the electronic flow limitation market in the SADC region.

Growth has been driven by innovation, with Inzalo’s prepaid water metering systems becoming the first in South Africa to be approved by the global Standard Transfer Specification (STS) Association.

A BBBEE Level 1 contributor, Inzalo undertakes design and manufacturing in accordance with ISO 9001: 2015 certification and IEC 62055-41 and 6205551 standards.

Inzalo’s prepaid water metering systems boast an open architecture, providing private and municipal clients with a level of flexibility in the choice of their vending partner.

Inzalo’s turnkey solutions encompass:

  • operational management of credit control
  • revenue management
  • revenue advancement.
Inzalo has a strong team of pioneering engineers and industry experts who have a clear focus on technological innovation. A dedicated product support team provides comprehensive training and after-sales support on a 24-hour
standby basis.

Enter the AquaFlow

Inzalo is proud to announce the launch of the AquaFlow, its latest water management breakthrough. An internet of things (IoT) enabled device, the AquaFlow forms part of Inzalo’s next generation of advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) solutions.

It is designed to wirelessly transmit data to municipalities or water service provider (WSP) databases and receive commands remotely. Instructions sent to the device are flexible and can be tailored for optimum functionality.

The data transmission side is handled by SigFox’s secure cloud-based platform, which sends data through to Inzalo’s API (application programming interface), allowing WSPs to automatically update their billing systems, and produce reports.

The AquaFlow, which features a built-in tamper detection alert, can be utilised for bulk solutions across the following meter sizes:

  • 40 mm
  • 50 mm
  • 80 mm
  • 100 mm
  • 150 mm
  • 200 mm.
The solution enables the measurement of bulk water and facilitates flow management via an intelligent shut-off valve. When used in conjunction with downstream AquaFlow devices, accurate water balancing can
be achieved.

“AquaFlow has the potential to tackle the water management challenges faced by South Africa and the world, especially when it comes to non-revenue water (NRW),” explains Sbonelo Mazibuko, CEO, Inzalo. “Being able to instruct the AquaFlow to open, close or restrict flow of water remotely is a highly innovative leap forward for municipalities.”

Its capabilities include revenue realisation through pre- and post-paid water metering, leak detection, credit management, and flow limitation. Additionally, these units provide a sound return on investment, with an estimated 10+ years’ life in the field and come equipped with replaceable battery packs.

The AquaFlow uses an internationally recognised secure communication network, Sigfox, which is managed in South Africa by Sqwidnet. Sigfox, available in 65 countries, with 1 billion people covered, enables greater meter interrogation.

This includes retrieving meter readings, setting configuration parameters, and loading prepaid tokens. More importantly, perhaps, communicating via Sigfox is inexpensive, requires low power and enjoys wide area coverage.

The AquaFlow is compatible with various pulse output water meters (digital or analogue), enabling municipalities to transmit data directly to their back-end database systems via the cloud. This modernises automated reading, crucial for reporting purposes.

Highly scalable

The AquaFlow can be installed to simply meter consumption on a free flow basis. This may be the preferred starting point for the roll-out of a scheme where the ultimate objective is flow limitation. The device can limit flow by:

  • volume
  • time of day
  • a combination of volume and time of day.
Flexibility is built into the system. Indigent consumers in all municipalities are entitled to free basic services. Daily allocation of water forms part of these. Through flow limitation, the AquaFlow ensures that indigent consumers receive the water they are entitled to.

Furthermore, the AquaFlow allows consumers to purchase additional water on a prepaid basis. 

For post-paid customers, the process efficiently and accurately automates the acquisition of readings, as well as invoice generation. 

“This can be used as a powerful tool for credit management, which any municipality can utilise in post-paid environments,” Mazibuko explains. “By being able to limit call-outs, municipalities can further save on costs normally designated to the deployment of vehicles and human resources.”

Data generated by the AquaFlow is analysed and, through advanced machine learning, can generate exceptions and alerts. This capability can drastically reduce water lost through leaks, which is a primary concern for most municipalities.

“At Inzalo, we are committed to helping CFOs, municipal managers and government officials to source innovative automated processes that enhance service delivery, realise optimal revenue and conserve
our precious natural resources,” Mazibuko concludes.   

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