WaterSight - General FAQ's

Product(s): WaterSight
Version(s): 10.00.
Area: Documentation

What is OpenFlowsTM WaterSightTM ?

OpenFlows WaterSight main goal is to habilitate water utilities with a powerful tool to improve network operations and therefore optimize operational costs while assuring or improving the service provided to customers. OpenFlows WaterSight combines SCADA, GIS, hydraulic modeling, and customer information into a single, interoperable dashboard. Access to cloud-based insights from various enterprise sources delivers a utility-wide view into the real time performance, forecasts, and detection of critical system and individual assets, enabling more efficient operations and maintenance decisions.

OpenFlows WaterSight is composed by the following modules: Home Dashboard, Network Monitoring, Pumps, Tanks, Water Audit, Event Management, Real time Simulation, Weather Forecast, Power BI, Capital Planning and Administration. For more information about the product please click here

What is OpenFlows WaterCAP?

OpenFlows WaterCAP combines asset data, GIS, failure history data and performance results into a single view of truth to support the definition of rehabilitation plans. Easily calculate likelihood and consequence of failures and combine them together by creating and compare different risk scenarios. With the power of a Digital Twin platform, you can also combine risk with asset performance to drive high-quality decision.

OpenFlows WaterCAP can be integrated as an additional module, named Capital Planning, inside OpenFlows WaterSight. More information can be found here.

Can WaterSight be applied to any type of water utility? What is the minimum required data?

Yes! WaterSight can be applied to any type of water utility, regardless the digital maturity level. It can apply well for both utilities that are now starting the digital journey, for those that already have several digital processes in place or even for those that are in a more advanced stage. The type of data you have available will influence which of the modules and capabilities you will have access, being the only minimum requirement to have a SCADA system or other telemetry system in place. 

The digital transformation process is a journey and can never be done in one single step. And you can embrace this journey with Bentley: based on the data you have now available we will already provide to you with a powerful platform that will give you further insights. Along time, as new and more data becomes available, we will continue to incorporate this data in the platform so that you are equipped with more and more capabilities along time.

What type of customization does WaterSight require? Can I build my own reports?

WaterSight comes already with pre-built menus and dashboards. Therefore once the data is imported into the software, you will immediately have access to actionable insights coming from all these pre-built menus and dashboards.

Besides this, WaterSight also offers the possibility for the user to customize and create their own reports and dashboards, through the use of PowerBI. More information can be found here.

Does WaterSight have a limited number of users?

No. You can add as much users as you want to your cloud solution, and several team members can be accessing the platform simultaneously. To add a team member, please take a look here.

Can I define different levels of permissions? For example operator access VS engineer access?

Yes. You can define two different levels of permissions:

  • Those that have access to all application, including edit mode access to all the administration options/configurations
  • Those that have access to all dashboards except the administration menu, where only  the read only access mode is available (this means they can not make changes in the digital twin)

For more information about roles, please take a look here.

Do I need a WaterGEMS  model to start using WaterSight? 

You don't need a WaterGEMS model in order to start using WaterSight. WaterSight is composed by modules, so the type of data you have available will influence which of the modules you will have access. In case you don't have a hydraulic model for example, you will be able to access the following modules: Home Dashboard, Network Monitoring, Pumps, Tanks, Water Audit, Event Management (Active Events), Weather Forecast and Power BI. In case you have a WaterGEMS model, you can directly upload it into WaterSight and have access to the Real time simulation module and to the Operational Response simulation.

You don't have a WarterGEMS model but you have other vendors model and you are interested in using them in WaterSight? Please reach to Bentley team experts to better guide you in the process.

The only minimum required data to have WaterSight running is the access to sensors data (from SCADA or dataloggers). To get this data in WaterSigth, Bentley will need to install an On-Premise tool that will automatically run in the machine background as a service and will be responsible to collect and transmit sensors data into WaterSight. More information can be found here

Note: A temporary WaterGEMS license is required to set up and bring into WaterSight the sensors signals. In case you don't have a WaterGEMS license, Bentley team will temporary provide a temporary license just to set up the On-Premise tool. 

Do I need a calibrated model?

WaterSight does not require a calibrated model, but the quality of the data provided will influence the quality and accuracy of the results displayed in the solution. If you don't have a calibrated model, WaterSight can automatically calibrate your model demands based on the real flow in each zone and patterns, that are automatically created using the real sensors data. For more information about the automatic demand calibration, please take a look at this article.

However demands may not be the only factor to consider when calibrating a model. Bentley offers WaterGEMS users with a powerful tool called Darwin Calibrator that can help calibrate other variables such as pipes roughness coefficients, leakage (by adjusting emitter coefficients) or status of elements (find open/closed valves). 

If you still are concerned about your model data quality, try to upload it into WaterSight. By leveraging the powerful visualizations offered by the solution, it will be easier for you and your team to understand the areas where the model is less accurate and how the model can be improved (by easily and directly comparing model and sensors results for example - graph below). 

Is WaterSight only limited to SCADA data or can I bring any other time series data from other telemetry systems (such as dataloggers)?

WaterSight is data agnostic, this means that it can connect to any type of system, SCADA or non-SCADA (any IOT devices), as long as it can access the data through a database connection (Excel, Access, ODBC, OLEDB, SQL Server, Oracle), OPC or Citect Sources.

In order to bring sensors data into WaterSight, Bentley will need to install an On-Premise tool that will automatically run in the machine background as a service and will be responsible to collect and transmit sensors data into WaterSight. More information can be found here

What are the main differences between WaterSight Network Monitoring module and SCADA systems?

Water utilities already have to manage several different systems and platforms and OpenFlows WaterSight is not intended to be one more. The idea is to have one single solution that can bring all the information coming from the different systems together and provide the one single view of truth, helping utilities optimizing their workflows. Reduce the time spend on data collection, analysis and integration, by using only one single platform! Apart from this, gain additional insights into your network operations. When directly comparing WaterSight Network Monitoring module capabilities and SCADA systems capabilities, these are the key differences:

  • OpenFlows WaterSight can generate more accurate alerts for bursts or other network anomalies, by setting triggers based on the difference between actual measured values and expected values (patterns);
  • OpenFlows WaterSight can help geolocate the problem (more information below);
  • With OpenFlows WaterSight the user can create additional fictitious meters that can represent the combination of other meters. This is useful to calculate for example zones flow, by summing all the inflows and subtracting all outflows (plus accounting for storage);
  • OpenFlows WaterSight can automatically calculate the volume lost in each event as well as the duration;
  • It is possible to manage alerts: update status, category, make a comment, etc;
  • OpenFlows WaterSight automatically calculates patterns and forecasts (up to one week) for each sensor/zone;
  • Minimum night flow calculation and evolution, per sensor and per zone;
  • Calculation of the ratio between minimum and average flow for each sensor/zone (usually used as a quick quantification of the real losses component for each zone).

How to configure Alerts? Pattern type or Absolute type alerts? 

Alerts can be configured by the user in the Alerts administration page. The user can define four different types: Pattern based, Absolute based, No Data and Flat Reading. 

Absolute based alarms are evaluated directly by comparing real time series values with the user defined threshold and are more useful to identify situations that do not depend on the sensor or zone pattern, like for example problems related with pressure service requirements - pressure below the minimum or maximum required by regulation - or tank overflows (more information here).

On the other hand, Pattern based alarms are evaluated using the pattern as a reference. Pattern based alarms are useful to trigger and detect anomaly or extraordinary events that don't occur often, and therefore do not make part of the normal behavior/pattern of the zone or sensor. Some examples are events like bursts and leaks, fire events, or a flow meter or PRV malfunctioning (more information here).

Can WaterSight be used to geolocate leaks?

In case the system is well sectorized in small DMAs (district metered areas), flow measurements exist at all zones inputs and outputs and there are several pressure measurements available inside the DMA, then all those measurements can be used to better geolocate the potential leak inside the zone. In order to achieve this please:

Whenever a flow alert is triggered for a zone, this can also generate a pressure decrease somewhere inside the zone. So if you receive a flow alert followed by a pressure decrease alert for the same zone, then it means that the leak/burst is potentially located near that specific pressure sensor. Please note that leaks geolocation effectiveness based on pressure sensors monitoring can be significantly affected in the the following cases:

  • oversized networks (in those cases pressure decreases are very small and therefore very difficult to notice/detect);
  • low leak flow rates (effectiveness improves with higher flow rates) 
  • lack of pressure sensors inside the zone;

Also please note that this methodology can be used to detect new bursts or leaks that appear in the system, but not to geolocate existent leaks that already exist in the system for a long period (as WaterSigth generates alerts based on differences between real values and patterns, being those estimated based on historical trends that can already include leakage). 

Can I generate other types of alerts for other problems based on any observed data in WaterSight? 

Yes. You can create an issue (this is the name given in the solution) based on any observed data, directly from any page in WaterSight, by clicking the issue flag button located on the right side of the header. 

Issues are a particularly important communication tool between operators and managers to identify and track potential anomalies observed from any page within WaterSight. Some examples can  include:

  • Creating issues for pumps that are operating inefficiently (pumps page)
  • Creating an issue due to some significant and anomalous decrease in revenues in a particular area, which needs further investigation (water audit page)
  • Creating an issue due to some significant and anomalous increase in water losses in a particular area, which needs further investigation (water audit page)
  • Low storage capacity (tank page)
  • Low tank turnover times (tank page)
  • Low pressure or high pressures in some parts of the network (Current simulation page)
  • MNF indicator really high (Minimum Night Flow page)
  • Any other problem identified based on the data displayed in the software 

More information can be found here.

What is the minimum required data to set up the pumps dashboards? Do I need pump power?

In order to have the pumps dashboards with meaningful information, the minimum recommended data is the following:

  • Flow signal for each pump or for the all pump station;
  • Discharge pressure signal for each pump or for the all pump station OR level signal of the downstream tank;
  • If flow and head is only available for the all pump station, then pump status signal for each pump is required;
  • Pump curves (flow-head and flow-efficiency);
  • Information if pumps are variable speed or not;

With this information it will be possible to show the head curves graphs (including the curve and calculated operating points), the efficiency curves graphs (including the curve and estimated operating points) and the power curves graphs (including the estimated operating points). Also estimated efficiencies for each pump are displayed.

Therefore having a power signal is not required, but instead is good to have as it will allow to more accurately calculate flow-efficiency operating points, the power-flow operating points and also each pump efficiency. Below is summarized the additional information that would be helpful to have (but not required):

  • Suction pressure signal (if signal is not available, a suction signal can be estimated and created using WaterGEMS. If you have doubts, please reach to your Bentley contact);
  • Power signal and curve;
  • If variable speed pump, variable speed efficiency curve and speed signal;

For more information please take a look at the Pump Details help page and at the Pumps Configuration help page.

Can I display any GIS data in WaterSight?

Yes. You can upload any GIS data into WaterSight (through shapefile upload in the GIS administration page) and whenever you go to a map page in WaterSight you will be able to turn on or off that specific GIS layer, as shown in figure below.

Does WaterSight automatically compute water balances? How?

Yes, WaterSight can automatically calculate water balance for each zone based on sensors data (from SCADA for example) and billings (uploaded via administration):

  • System input volumes for each zone are calculated based on the flow sensor measurements (for example from SCADA);
  • Revenue water for each zone is calculated based on the customer billings;
  • Non-Revenue water is calculated based on the difference between system input and total revenue;
  • Water losses are calculated subtracting the authorized unbilled consumption (configured by the user in the administration) to the total non-revenue water;
  • Division of water losses into real losses and apparent losses components can follow two different strategies:
    • bottom up approach: real losses are calculated based on the minimum nightly flow (MNF) of each zone;
    • top down approach: user defines a value for the apparent losses and the real losses are obtained by subtracting the apparent losses to the water losses.

For more detail about the calculations, please click here.

For more information about WaterSight, please go to OpenFlows WaterSight TechNotes and FAQ's.