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Who cares about water?

06 March 2015

Aging water systems around the world create technical challenges to keep waste water systems operating at a peak, to support a growing urban population.


According to the 2010 UN Habitat report, the global population could reach over 9 billion by 2050, with 60% (6.4 billion) of the population living in urban locations. This urbanization is stretching the limits and reliability of the global water system, compounded by increasingly tight budgets for large infrastructure projects. As if this was not enough, add in changing technological needs and a perfect storm is being created.

This perfect storm is being fought from the top down, and from the bottom up by many professionals, but no more important are system design engineers and maintenance personal. Engineering firms seeking better, quality solutions, that can be implemented within a budget, seeking the most value for the investment. Maintenance personal, who are on the ground level, are focused on learning newer technologies, but also maintaining the existing system. This stretches their time between preventative maintenance and repairs. Both groups are seeking reliability, quality, and additional capabilities to solve these challenges.

Smart systems

My vision for the water industry is the ability to continue to support existing technologies in place, with easy to use, increasingly connected systems that solve the issues of reactive maintenance. Rather, the system should be smart enough to explain when there could be potential issues, within a simple, small, cost effective package. This idea can be implemented with existing, in the field deployed assets, or with new assets planned or to be installed. All of this should include an easy to use interface, without the issues associated with traditional software packages.

Connecting the system to the internet, allowing remote maintenance and monitoring, creates a situation where you are not left wondering what is occurring, rather you can observe and predict what will occur. The water system never sleeps, maintenance and personal have to sleep, this vision bridges the push and pull relationship of physical presence and constant monitoring.



A prime example of this vision is Rijnland water in The Netherlands. Rijnland water uses oxygen and bacteria for natural aeration, purifying the untreated water. This system is vital to keep running, or there will be issues with keeping up with the demand associated within the waste water system. For Rijnland, when an issue did occur, being able to recognize quickly the issues was key. In their case, a ProfiTrace was used to identify the immediate issue, correcting a corroded cable. But what about the uptime for future issues? Rijnland also had a focus toward the preventative maintenance.

With the uses of ComBricks, they noticed EMC in the system correcting a potential issue. However, this is only one aspect of an total value system. All current and future installations have ComBricks installed, with monitor and triggers set up to ensure uptime, eliminated downtime, and allow for the vital systems to run.


At PROCENTEC, we focus just on these solutions. PROFIBUS has been in our blood for 17 years and PROFINET will be part of our continued focus on innovation moving forward. We believe that you can create a system which is intelligent, integrated into a comprehensive maintenance plan, focused on unlocking the continued value of an existing system. For the water industry, we offer solutions for PA (Process Automation) couplers in PROFIBUS, with diagnostics built in.

Triggers can be set where you are notified of pending issues, or remotely check up on the system saving time and resources. Fiber Optics are available to allow longer distances, less interference from EMC or potential shorts, and Fiber Optic strength monitoring. There are also substitutions for standard junction boxes that allow for maintenance to be performed without shutting down the whole system, each leg galvanic isolated, with the whole system redundant, all but guaranteeing operation during critical periods.

PROCENTEC in the Netherlands

PROCENTEC is focused on industrial networks, with a history of quality, knowledge, and innovation. Through “plug and play” solutions to diagnostics which are the hallmark of the industry, day in and day out, PROCENTEC keeps industrial networks running. Industries such as water, metals, mining, oil and gas, food processing, chemicals, and others increasingly find our products as the solutions they have been seeking.


About Matthew Dulcey

Matthew Dulcey

Matthew Dulcey is the Global Sales Manager at PROCENTEC Head Office. He is a US citizen, who graduated from Drexel University in Philadelphia 2004. In the United States, he has experience within the chemical, water and electricity generation industries.

In 2013, he moved Rotterdam, The Netherlands, continuing his education at Erasmus University, and began his career at PROCENTEC. Matthew enjoys working in international business, bring solutions to the industrial automation field globally.

He can be reached at mdulcey@procentec.com, via LinkedIn or at +31 174 671 800.