Smartvatten for Water Utilities aims to offer the best possible tools for water network management. We combine the best practices of software development, design and water engineering to create comprehensive and intuitive solutions. We focus on the daily user experience to ensure a user-friendly environment.
It all started in 2016 when Helsinki Region Environmental Services Authority HSY organized a hackathon, a weekend-long innovation competition. It brought together computer scientists and water engineers to develop new solutions based on existing network data. The hackathon event was held in a wastewater treatment plant in Viikinmäki and the goal was to develop solutions based on data collected from pumping stations, weather forecasts, energy usage and map data, to name a few. During the weekend, various new solutions were developed and one of them was our data visualization tool.
From Visualization to Analytics
The tool caught the attention of Helsinki’s water utility HSY and led to a consultancy project, which was carried out using the principles of agile software development. The developers worked in fast sprints together with the end users to ensure the practicality of the features. During that time, the visualization tool for pumping station data started to develop further toward data analytics. Other data sources were incorporated into analytics as well.
It became clear that there was potential for more than a single consultancy project. Other water utilities and companies were starting to show interest in our solution. We first started talking about our own company in 2017, and a year later, with a reinforced team, Neuroflux was founded. Our goal was simple: develop better data analytics for water utilities.
Speeding Up Development
During the summer of 2018 we hit the ground running with Kiuas Accelerator organized by Aaltoes. The program provided great, practical insight into founding a startup and taking the first steps. The most important thing we learned was to focus on the client. That was a great thing to learn beforehand. A mix of hard work and a bit of luck landed us three pilots during the accelerator program, providing us with valuable feedback and speeding up the pace of development.
Our tool has been adopted by a number of water utilities in Finland and Sweden. Their experiences have convinced us of the advantages of data analytics for water utilities: we have helped detect unauthorized sewer connections, infiltration and inflow water as well as blockages. Since 2019, our focus has been on testing and developing more advanced machine learning models, incorporating new data sources and improving data analytics overall.
Reaching New Markets With Smartvatten
In 2022, water efficiency specialist Smartvatten acquired Neuroflux, aiming to take its comprehensive water efficiency service to a new level by incorporating solutions for water utilities. Now operating under the name of Smartvatten for Water Utilities, we continue to enhance and expand our solution so water utilities can make the most of their data and take care of their valuable water networks. And, as part of the Smartvatten Group, we are now able to expand our reach to new, international markets.