Leak Detection for Transmission Mains

Providing safe, reliable access to clean water is a major challenge for utilities around the world, considering that roughly 12 billion gallons of water are lost every day globally. While many utilities are aware of the importance of reducing Non-Revenue Water (NRW), reducing it can be a challenge. The World Bank estimates that NRW costs utilities worldwide about US$14 billion every year. By reducing these losses by half in areas with the highest NRW, it is estimated that US$2.9 billion would be generated and an additional 90 million people could have access to water.

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Although there are many factors that contribute to NRW, one of the most significant causes is leakage of aging water pipelines. Much of the water infrastructure around the world is aging and reaching the end of its design life, leading to a greater number of leaks and pipe ruptures. While these occur most frequently on small-diameter distributions mains, leaks and ruptures on large-diameter transmission mains are a much larger concern for utility operators.

Leaks on transmission mains often account for a much higher percentage of the total water lost from leakage than leaks in the distribution system. This is primarily because trunk mains carry water at a much higher capacity and operating pressure than distribution pipelines, but also because the lower frequency of trunk main leaks leads to many of these problems not being identified for long periods of time

Through the implementation of a proactive and regular leak detection program focusing on largediameter transmission mains, utilities can greatly reduce their water losses while identifying leaks that could eventually lead to pipe failure. To help utilities with their leak detection programs, Pure offers two inline solutions that can locate pinhole-sized leaks within 6 feet (1.8 meters).

Inline solutions are more effective than non-invasive methods for identifying leaks on transmission mains, as the leak detection sensor is brought directly to the leak location. To learn more about Pure’s inline solutions and see examples of successful leak detection programs, visit the links below.

Leak Detection Solutions for Transmission Mains

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SmartBall® Leak Detection

SmartBall® is an innovative free-swimming inspection technology designed to operate in a live pipeline. It is a free-swimming foam ball with an instrument-filled aluminum alloy core capable of detecting and locating very small leaks, gas pockets and structural defects in pipelines.


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Sahara® Leak Detection

Tethered Pipeline Inspection System


Leak Detection Solutions for Transmission Mains

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Dallas Water Utilities Sahara Program


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Maynilad Reduces Water Losses


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City of Montreal Uses Tethered Leak Detection


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Non-Revenue Water (NRW)