Wide area sensor networks are covering more and more cities across the country. Find out how Bradford Beck is now part of the Internet of Things.
Although we've been quiet for nearly a year, we've been beavering away on the technology and have now moved to using LoRaWAN low-power wireless connectivity. This means we can operate in any area that already has LoRaWAN coverage with The Things Network.
We'll have more information on that as it progresses, but for now, enjoy a photo of boxfresh LoRaWAN modules.
At Flood Network we're creating a network of flood sensors across the UK using Internet of Things technology. It's installed by people like you, by community flood groups and even by local authorities, to give a better picture of flooding. You can see the map we created at https://flood.network/map.
This weekend we're coming to the Open Data Institute Floodhack 16 in Leeds, where we'll be demonstrating how it all works. But even when you're passionate about the content looking at data can sometimes be a bit dull. That's why we love to see people use it to make applications. This could be:
- An application like Fergus' cycle path tracker which shows when a particular cycle path in the Cherwell Valley is likely to flood
- A way to warn your community to start their flood readiness plans
- It could even be something for farmers to warn them their livestock is at risk
We can make data available as MQTT or can post to a REST endpoint, so bring your tools and your Edward Tufte books and see what you can create.
Also joining Floodhack are some ambassadors for The Things Network - a free and open network that enables the Internet of Things. Our new Flood Monitor kits are compatible with this network, so you'll be able to put sensors in a TTN area without putting up a base station. We'll have some sensors to experiment with and we'd love to test our Things Network sensor if anyone has the hardware.
Andrew Back (Wuthering Bytes) is one of the team behind ThingsCalderdale. Expect to see more sensors appearing in the Calder Valley soon. Julian is part of the ThingsMcr team and I will be representing ThingsOxford, which is now in the works.
Technology aside what we want is for people to understand their role in flooding and how they can be more prepared. To join a flood monitoring network gives the community an awareness of its waterways and it gives us a great use case for the Internet of Things to have a positive impact.
So come along to Floodhack in Leeds and let's build something amazing.
We recently installed our first sensor in Dorset, by the River Winterborne. This includes a rather different installation which shows the water levels in a pump & sump system for a 16th century cottage rather than the river level. The sensor in the sump tells us when the water levels below the property are rising and when the pumps are working to 'bail out' the site.
We're awaiting Environment Agency approval for a second installation above a stream culvert since this watercourse is under their management. When we get approval we'll publish the levels.
After many months of experimentation and development we're proud to release the Flood Network map:
It's great to see Oxford on the map, as it's the home of Flood Network and the original project which started this off. We're at the cutting edge of the Internet of Things and flooding and Nominet have done great things to help us make this a reality. If you want to know more about their involvement, have a look at this video and blogpost: http://www.nominet.uk/iot-technology-powers-an-interactive-flood-map-and-sensor-network/
We want people to engage with their rivers and improve resilience to flooding. We're doing that by looking for communities and individuals to become Floodwatchers or adopt a Flood Monitor, which is a small device which can be put at the end of a garden or under a bridge or floorboards to measure the water levels. By installing or adopting a Flood Monitor you can contribute to the bigger picture and improve flood risk and forecasting models, and you can also just watch those river levels when you're not nearby.
We Can Help Your Flood Response
Flood Network is working with the public sector to improve street-level observation and alerting during flood events and we're always looking for more enthusiastic innovative local authorities to join our network.
For more information call us on 07771 537574 or email email@example.com
- Ben Ward, Director
We're starting to see the winter season have an effect on the Flood Network in Oxford. Up in Wolvercote a ditch which is normally dry in the summer months has shown a rise of 10cm in the last few weeks. This is a good indication of the groundwater in the area and is a useful reference where it can have an effect further downstream.
If you know a good location which is relatively free from foliage above water then let us know. Become a Floodwatcher: Join Flood Network
"What is crowdsourced hydrology data and can it help us respond better to flooding?"
Ben will be asking that question when he speaks in the Flood Tech Theatre on the 14th October at Flood Expo exhibition in Excel London.
We're also exhibiting, so get some free tickets and come down to see us. We'll have a live demo of the Flood Network's first deployment in Oxford and we'll be right in the middle of the UK's top event about flooding, including equipment, barriers, vehicles and more. Have a look at the website and get a ticket.
If you want to know more about what we're doing to improve flood data then sign up for our news updates or find us on twitter at @flood_network
For the past 12 weeks we've been on the summer 2015 cohort at Bethnal Green Ventures - an accelerator programme for people who want to change the world using technology.
With BGV's funding from Blackstone, Nominet Trust, Nesta and the Cabinet Office and their programme of expert workshops we've developed the idea from a community sensor network into a sustainable business model to address the needs of local authorities and flood risk modellers.
How those 12 weeks have flown by. On Wednesday 16th September we'll be pitching to a room of 100+ people, explaining why Flood Network is an idea that can change the world.
If you want to come and support us, invest in us or just fancy some drinks then free tickets are available here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/bgv-founders-day-summer-2015-tickets-16657236242
Otherwise we'll see you there.