Interview D.A. Savic - Developing the digital water toolbox


“Digital technologies are reshaping the water sector, and the implications and opportunities around this are the focus of this year’s IWA Digital Water Summit. The Source spoke to Dragan Savic, chair of the steering committee of IWA’s Digital Water Programme.
The diversity and potential of digital technologies in the water sphere is enormous. Asked to mention some of the opportunities that lie ahead for the sector, Professor Dragan Savic, CEO of KWR Water Research Institute, and professor of hydroinformatics at the University of Exeter, points for example to the development and integration of better water quality sensors as an opportunity in the case of centralised supply systems. Current microbiological, culture-based testing involves a substantial wait for results. More rapid solutions are progressing and becoming more widely available. Savic notes, for example, the potential of genetic analysis based on real-time polymerase chain reaction testing. “In 10 years’ time, why couldn’t we expect this to be almost instantaneous, so that we could have real-time information about the chemistry and biology of the water?” he asks. He sees this would bring the potential to transform how the sector approaches use of chlorination to provide disinfection, which carries the risk of producing carcinogenic trihalomethanes. “Why can’t we eliminate chlorination with the help of this type of technology?” he adds.”

(Citation: Interview D.A. Savic – Developing the digital water toolbox – (2020)30 May)

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