What is the nuron nervous system?


You may have seen the article in the New Scientist a couple of weeks ago: ‘The Rise of the Fatbergs’. The article discusses the benefits of proactively monitoring the sewers (specifically around identifying fatbergs before they happen).  The article also directly references how nuron is proposing to do just that.

Inspiration from biology

A nervous system in the human body comprises of nerves and cells, transmitting messages to and from the brain around the body. The nuron nervous system follows this same principle, sending information from the sewers through to a base station for processing messages like ‘a blockage in forming’.

Our nervous system uses optical fibre as a sensor, but it is so much more than a piece of fibre. Our nervous system has several key elements:

  • The sensor and containment
  • O.S.C.A.R the Robot
  • The base station (The brain.)

The sensor and containment

Our fibre sensor measures multiple parameters (flow, depth, temperature and structural integrity) continuously through the sewer network. We then translate these measurements to useful information such as ‘a blockage is forming’, or ‘looks like infiltration’.  This all happens in real time.

Our sensor is protected from the harsh environment of the sewers by a unique containment which is sensitive enough to sense, but robust enough to withstand the sewer environment.

O.S.C.A.R. – Optical Sensor Containment Application Robot

O.S.C.A.R allows us to install within the small non-man entry pipes. Did you know that about 70% of pipes in the UK are non-man entry.

The base station (The brain)

One of the really novel elements of our solution removes the need for power in the sewers.

The base station transmits light pulses along the fibre and then analyses the backscatter to provide measurements. One base station can measure between 50km and 250km of a sewer network.

A step change

We understand that continuous monitoring of multiple infrastructure parameters means a lot of data. How to present this data in an intuitive and informative way is key to the success of the nuron nervous system. Therefore, through a series of interviews and co-design workshops with key water companies, we have co-designed a user interface and developed a user experience which genuinely fits the need of the wastewater industry.

Not only does the nuron nervous system enable the transformation to a more proactive way of working for the water industry enabling social, environmental and economic benefits. We also provide the infrastructure for rolling out fibre to support FTTH, 5G and smart cities. In summary, nuron is the only patented, dual purpose system on the market.

We make fibre make sense for water companies, infrastructure builders, communications companies and you & me.