New Rain Sensor Making Rivers Cleaner

kristy Greentech


New Rain Sensor Making Rivers Cleaner

MINNEAPOLIS, MN, June 9, 2011 –/WORLD-WIRE/– You might have had the
pleasure of driving a luxury car equipped with rain sensing windshield
wipers. Recently, Hydreon Corporation has developed a new optical rain
sensor that uses the same principles as automotive rain sensors, and is now
being used to make wastewater treatment plants more efficient.
The Hydreon Optical Rain Gauge is a sensor about the size of a tennis ball.
It uses beams of infrared light to sense water hitting the outside surface.
Hydreon was involved with the development of the technology for the
automotive industry, where cost, reliability, ruggedness are vital.
The quality of the water in our lakes and rivers has been improving for
decades, in part because more sewage is treated before discharge.
Still, about half the raw sewage generated in the US never gets treated. One
of the reasons for this is that many systems intermingle rainwater runoff
and sanitary sewage. In periods of heavy rainfall, the treatment plant
cannot handle the amount of mixed water and sewage coming in, and they dump
the untreated mixture directly. The problem is compounded because almost no
sewage treatment plants have any way of knowing whether what is coming in is
mostly rainwater or sewage.
Rainfall rate would be a useful input for sewage-treatment control systems.
Meteorological rain sensors, however, are generally based on delicate
mechanical tipping buckets that require too much periodic maintenance for
application in wastewater treatment.

The Hydreon Optical Rain Gauge provides wastewater treatment facilities
with reliable information. The device has no moving parts, and the convex
surface is self-cleaning, making the device maintenance free. Control
systems of wastewater treatment plants can use data provided by the Rain
Gauge to keep the level of untreated discharge to a minimum. The rain data
also serves as a diagnostic to optimize inflow, outflow, and energy usage.
Given that millions of tons of sewage are generated in the U.S. daily, even
a small improvement in wastewater treatment efficiency can have an impact in
the water quality of our rivers and lakes. .

Leading the charge toward sustainable wastewater solutions is Adenus
Technologies of Tennessee. Adenus has developed sewage systems that treat
and dispose of sewage largely in the same place it is generated.
The systems are generally more efficient and lower cost than traditional,
highly-centralized municipal sewer systems. Adenus is among the first in the
wastewater industry to incorporate the Hydreon Rain Gauge. Mr. Pickney
reports that the Hydreon Rain Gauge “greatly improves our Quality Assurance
/ Quality Control program for monitoring wastewater plants.”

Because it is descended from the high-volume automotive industry, the cost
of the Rain Gauge is low; Hydreon Optical Rain Gauges cost just
$99 in single piece quantity. Rain Gauges are also finding applications in
building automation, meteorology, irrigation, and a host of other fields.
For more information visit


Rein Teder


Hydreon Corporation


[email protected]