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Revima Adopts LoRaWAN-based IoT Water Metering

Blogpost, March 30 2022

REVIMA Group, a leading French aeronautics MRO (Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul) solutions provider for civil and military aircraft, has deployed IoT solutions to monitor water consumption, using sensors that read its water meters, and to monitor the temperature & hygrometry on its site.

The solutions are based on a LoRaWAN® network infrastructure, provided by Factory Systemes, a major French player in the distribution of hardware and software for computing and industrial IoT, also a long-term Actility Partner. Their powerful Galium IoT Hub, is based on Actility’s ThingPark® Enterprise IoT platform, representing the most industrial and scalable LoRaWAN private network solution on the market today.

Why improve plant water management?

Revima group operates a plant located in Rives-en-Seine, Normandie, France, employing 650 employees that ensure 24/7 production. Revima supports aircraft operators, lessors and repair stations worldwide, positioning this company as one of the most experienced MROs in the world, with extensive understanding of airline expectations, best in class value and services. Their presence is now international as it opened a new plant for landing gear overhaul business in Thailand in 2021, at the Chonburi site south of Bangkok.

Efficient water management is a challenge for the company, as regulations in France impose limits on their water usage for chromium plating operations. On the 4 500 cubic meters of city water and river water used per year, the plant sometimes registers drifts of about 10%. It was important to understand what causes such variations.

Thus, the company adopted IoT in order to accelerate its digital transformation, allowing them to improve what they measure, to get a better traceability of volumes and variations, to have a proper water management study for regulatory purposes, and to comply with environmental objectives like control and reduction of resources, and reduction of environmental impact.

Wireless remote reading became the solution: 30 new wireless water meters have been installed instead of old installations which require manual reading. Each one is equipped with a battery-operated sensor with an autonomy of about seven years and provides much more accurate data. Two gateways ensure the redundancy of the information on two computer systems to avoid any malfunction.

Fully functional since January 2022, the project deployment, including IT installation (software and hardware), plumbing and the installation of new water meters along the 600-meter length of the site, took 4 months.

Photo of a fatory near river
Cut of factory using water monitoring

What are the solution’s major benefits?

Now, the consumption data is automatically uploaded to Revima’s platform every 10 minutes using Factory Systemes’ Galium IoT Hub and Actility’s ThingPark, instead of monthly manual monitoring. Moreover, Factory Systemes developed connectors to ensure communication in Modbus to the equipment in place and in MQTT and OPC-UA to the platform in order to guarantee the scalability of the project.

“Energy management is an unavoidable need for manufacturers, associated with ISO 50001. Factory Systems has endeavored to build an offer that allows manufacturers to deploy a LoRaWAN network that allows them to collect data and inject it into their existing systems (supervision/SCADA/database) that they control, in order to make IOT accessible to the greatest number of people and with the greatest simplicity. Galium IoT Hub is an agnostic solution allowing to answer multiple use cases where customers want an On premise server.”

says Guillaume OBLIN, IoT Product Manager at Factory Systemes.

Moreover, Revima installed remote reading of temperatures and hygrometry on the site, using 50 wireless sensors. Now the group can better comply with aeronautical regulations that require to guarantee the traceability of the temperature and humidity in the workshops to prevent the seals of the aircraft from aging.

For the success of the project, Revima had a couple of requirements.

On the one hand, Revima needed to first be able to improve the plant’s IT tool and have a unique solution. The plant is using the Wonderware System Platform, also provided by Factory Systemes. Deploying this IoT project on the same system saved hours of development, as the solution works with bricks, making it easy to add new functionalities.

On the other hand, Revima wanted full control of the solution and independence from any supplier. This was possible to achieve with a private, on-premises LoRaWAN network. Revima’s data is now hosted on its own data center, on site.

Photo of Eric Lecuyer

“The GALIUM solution allows us to enter the world of IOT and guarantee data control from data production to use in our third-party systems “
confirms Eric Lecuyer, Project Engineer, Industrial IT Manager at Revima.

Now, the plant is enjoying significant benefits of the solution:

  • Management of its own fleet of objects without the intervention of a third-party operator
  • Control of the quality of the radio coverage of the deployed objects and scalability of the park
  • Control of the information collected by an on-premise installation or by a Cloud service
  • Management of data security
  • Data refresh rate
Galium IoT hub infographics
Inforgraphic: Galium IoT Hub architecture

LoRaWAN® is a widely used wireless protocol that allows battery-operated devices to communicate with IoT applications via long-range, wireless connections, allowing longer battery life, thus lowering the cost of device ownership. LoRaWAN® is especially useful in large-scale deployments because of its availability, cost, and reach, due to its use of unlicensed spectrum, the availability of standardized, low-cost modules with long battery life. 

Galium IoT Hub functiones as a top application layer over ThingPark Enterprise, which centrally manages the LoRaWAN gateways, all IoT sensors and the data exchange with the industrial or IT applications, whether they are deployed on site or in the Cloud. Each component of the LoRaWAN network infrastructure (objects, antennas, processing system…) is managed within a single platform.

This is made possible thanks to ThingPark Enterprise, which is specifically designed for enterprises: it’s simple, scalable, and easy to operate, and offers a unique low-power IoT communication infrastructure to enable an infinite number of industrial use cases. ThingPark Enterprise comes preconfigured with a series of connectors to popular IoT cloud services including Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, ThingWorx and many more.

Photo of Olivier Hersent

“Water and energy management is a very important area of improvement for any industrial facility. Together with Factory Systemes, we provide solutions with a high-availability LoRAWAN network, and easy to implement on legacy systems thanks to Modbus compatibility. For Revima, monitored and proactively managed water usage means waste reduction, energy conservation, and sustainability”
says Olivier Hersent, CEO at Actility.

What is LoRa and LoRaWAN white paper techniical overview, benfits and use cases

Learn more about the LoRaWAN technology by downloading the Actility “What is LoRaWAN” white paper