How radio signals are reducing the number of holes in roads

Primayer Instruments
Water leak detection
Industry / Vertical:


In the UK, more than 3 billion litres of water leaks every year from the mains network. Utilities face a constant struggle to replace aging pipe networks and deal with damaging vibration from increased traffic flow on roads.

Recent innovations in leak detection technologies are starting to help water utilities identify leaks quickly and more accurately, which is allowing them to better manage the problem. Primayer Instruments, based in the UK, is a company which provides the systems needed for detecting and controlling leaks in water networks.

Water pipes come in a range of materials, from metal and plastic to asbestos cement: each gives off different sounds as water passes through. This sound will change when a pipe begins to leak. Measurement of the speed of water through changes in sound can be used to identify and accurately locate a leak point, ensuring that it is fixed quickly and with minimal disruption.

Noise correlation requires accurate communication between transmitters placed on pipes at each end of the leak zone and a portable leak noise correlation product called Eureka Digital. By measuring the time taken for the leak sound to travel from the transmitter to the receiver, it is possible to accurately discover the location of the leak. Both transmitters and receivers have to meet high demands of accuracy and range and be small and rugged enough to fit portable devices used in routine daily operations in the field.


Wood & Douglas provided the wireless connectivity for Primayer’s Eureka Digital product, using its SXT450 transmitters for the pipes and its SR500 receiver, which was housed within Eureka Digital.

The SXT450 was ideal for Primayer’s needs, combining highly sensitive receiver circuitry with a powerful 500mW RF transmitter which can operate accurately even at long range.

The SR500 met the constrained physical dimensions Primayer’s handheld design required, whilst also satisfying the EN 300 220 and more demanding EN 300 086 specifications which ensured the device worked in accordance with international licensed and unlicensed telemetry and data regulations. This was important because Primayer sells globally with support facilities in India, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and France.

The application of Primayer’s Eureka Digital technology brings a significant reduction in terms of ground work undertaken by utility crews. Excavations can be accurately targeted and work completed more quickly, reducing costs, damage to road surfaces and minimising disruption. More importantly supplies are greatly improved with less water lost from the network at a time when water supplies are seen as increasingly critical for expanding urban populations.

  • Professional range
  • EN 300 220 / EN 300 086 approved
  • Compact, rugged, energy efficient form factor


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