Wivenhoe Water Quality Monitoring

August 2nd, 2016

  • One of the major sources of drinking water for south-east Queensland under the watchful eye of one of Australia’s largest integrated intelligent wireless sensor network
  • CSIRO and a local water authority in Queensland, SEQWater,  joined forces to monitor the Lake Wivenhoe catchment, which spans an area about the size of the city of Brisbane, and supplies water to the region’s 1.5 million residents
  • Approximately 120 nodes, using CSIRO’s FLECK™ smart wireless sensor network technology, are monitoring environmental conditions on Lake Wivenhoe and in the surrounding catchment



Each green dot indicates a sensor node on the lake, with an average distance of about 500m between each 2 nodes. On the right of the map, the city of Brisbane can be seen.



The network included 40 floating nodes to monitor water temperature profile at different depths along the lake. The temperature of currents along the water column correlates highly with pollution levels in the lake, enabling water authorities to decide where and how much to treat water downstream.


One of the Wivenhoe surface nodes


The network also includes dozens of land based nodes, on livestock and fixed in paddocks, to understand the grazing patterns of animals and the time they spend in ripirian areas, which contributes to the pollution input into the waterways.


This floating sensor network represented a paradigm shift for water quality monitoring in terms of spatial and temporal resolution