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Bahrain’s Electricity and Water Authority is using Nokia technology to modernize its water distribution network. In the first phase, the project will cover the Al Muharraq area in Bahrain and a private LTE network for industrial connectivity.

Initially the network will connect 500 secondary substations and six primary substations to the central location. The solution will be based on 3GPP standardization on 410 MHz Band B87.

A spokesperson for the utility said in a press release that this project paves the way for smoother adoption of IoT products and more smart services in the future.

SEE: Nokia takes 5G underground with successful tests of private networks in mines in Russia and Chile

Kamal Ballout, head of Nokia Enterprise, Middle East, Africa, China and India at Nokia, said in a press release the company’s technology provides reliable and ultra-high-speed broadband wireless networking to utility customers.

“Private LTE is enabling utility organizations around the world to simplify network management and use automation to bring down costs,” Ballout said.

The hardware and software for the project include:

  • Nokia IP/MPLS wireless router 7705 SAR-Hmc for smart grid communications
  • Nokia Compact Mobility Unit to provide the mobile packet core functions for mobile broadband, IoT and Machine-type Communication
  • Nokia Network Services Platform for automation of IP and optical networks
  • Nokia LTE radio equipment for capacity management

During the second phase of the project, the network will connect thousands of secondary substations and hundreds of primary substations spread across the entire country.

The Kingdom of Bahrain is an island nation in the Persian Gulf that includes 50 natural islands and 33 artificial islands. Muharraq is a city on Muharraq Island known for narrow alleys and traditional Bahraini houses. Bahrain’s international airport is in Muharraq.

Smart cities, climate change and water infrastructure

Climate change is increasing the frequency of drought, according to a recent United Nations report. Also, as the world’s population grows, so will the demand for water. One expert said in an interview with Bloomberg that city planners will have to meet increasing demand for water from residential, industrial and ecological sectors in the short-term and the long-term. Water is measured less than other systems, according to water use expert Dragan Savic, which makes it harder to manage.

This means recycling water, reducing usage and making water systems more efficient. This means that homeowners and cities will need to use technology to achieve these goals. IoT technology is part of the solution to detect leaks sooner and monitor usage. A Texas company is using edge computing and IoT sensors to help cities modernize crumbling water infrastructure and inaccurate water meters. The new infrastructure bill in the U.S. includes $55 billion for improving water systems. The American Society of Civil Engineers stated in a recent report about water infrastructure that “billions of dollars are needed each year to renew and replace outdated pipes, pumps, storage facilities and treatment plants that ensure clean water delivers to homes and businesses and carry away and safely treat sewage and stormwater…”

The ASCE’s Infrastructure most recent Report Card assigned drinking water and wastewater infrastructure a D and D+, respectively. The organization said that “closing the investment gap

would be equivalent to the nation’s water infrastructure achieving at least a “B” letter grade, reaching a state of good repair and posing a minimal risk, or an “A” letter grade, a standard of resilience and capacity that is fit for the future.”