Moreton Bay Regional Council goes for satellite-connected smart water sensors

IoT smart sensors remove need for manual checking of water levels.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor
Image: Optus

Moreton Bay Regional Council has rolled out a number of IoT water tank sensors that remove the need to send staff to remote locations to check on water levels.

The sensors are connected via low Earth orbit nanosatellites, and have been estimated to save the council around AU$20,000 each year.

The council partnered with Optus Enterprise and Myriota on the deployment, with Optus parent company Singtel having a stake in Myriota.

"As a council we have made great strides in implementing smart technologies, from our AI road scanning system on garbage trucks to pathway defect detection e-bikes, just to name a few," Mayor Peter Flannery said.

"These water tanks are critical in supplying water for toilets and other amenities at our region's remote areas, which are used by many locals and tourists each year."

Further up the Queensland coast, Livingstone Shire Council said last year it was trialling smart lights to help confused turtle hatchlings.

Due to the street lighting around the area, sometimes when the hatchlings leave their eggs, they can become disorientated, fail to find the horizon, and stray from the path they should be taking into the ocean. Even after they reach the sea, the hatchlings can sometimes be lured back by the lights.

The lights are connected to a LoRaWAN network provided by NNNCo, which was deployed to the shire in 2019.

On Thursday, Optus launched a feature in its My Optus app dubbed Sidekick that allows customers to ask contacts to check in with them.

"Many of us can identify with that feeling of wanting someone to check in with us in a little while to make sure we are okay, even if we can't exactly pinpoint why we feel that way. It may feel awkward to ask someone for that extra assurance," Optus director of digital AI Kate Brodie said. 

"Optus Sidekick can help you prearrange a time when Optus will let the people you care about know you want them to check in on you, and only gets in touch if that time arises. We have also discovered that it's not just women who may want to use Optus Sidekick, but also kids walking home from school, people out for a late-night walk, and even an elderly neighbour who walks to the store alone."

A beta of the feature is being run on iOS.

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