Kinéis connectivity: an innovative solution for water resource management
A humanitarian issue
Water covers 72% of the surface of our Blue Planet (oceans, seas, rivers, lakes, groundwater, glaciers). Freshwater, essential to the survival of living species including our own, represents only 2.8% of the Earth’s water, compared with 97.8% salt water, according to the Centre d’Information sur l’Eau.
In recent years, climate change has led to an increase in two recurring extreme phenomena that upset the natural balance and endanger billions of men, women and children, as well as the flora and fauna of our planet: floods and droughts.
Faced with this ecological disaster, extreme droughts are exacerbating hydrological problems: water is becoming increasingly scarce. At the same time, the world’s populations are confronted with two consequences of industrialization (textiles, mining) and intensive chemical agriculture: pollution of continental water resources (water tables, rivers and lakes). In addition to this pollution, there is a considerable decline in water quality due to obsolete wastewater systems.
Weakened by these new issues, France remains at the forefront
Our country is well aware of its hydrological reality, threatened by the new problems of continental water management, such as drought and flooding. In France, monitoring is carried out by players with an interest in the water cycle, which can be divided into two categories: the large water cycle (from the snow cover of mountainous areas, feeding rivers and lakes), and the small water cycle, via urban distribution networks for conurbations.
The report by the French Senate mission on sustainable water management (July 2023), sounds the alarm about the consequences of global warming (increased evapotranspiration, slower groundwater recharge). France is no longer as rich in hydrological resources as it once was. According to the report, rivers are set to lose between 10% and 40% of their flow by 2050, raising the question of the sustainability of agricultural production.
In addition, water stakeholders are also observing a decline in water quality and an increase in water temperature. As the quantity of water decreases, the concentration of pollutants increases. Industry is also affected by these changes in water quality, just as it is by the impact of its activities.
Kinéis white paper on hydrology: highlighting the added value of Kinéis space connectivity in innovative solutions
Kinéis realized early on that its space-based connectivity for the Internet of Things (IoT) could play a considerable and pioneering role in monitoring natural phenomena such as drought and flooding, thanks to in situ sensors communicating with the constellation of 25 nanosatellites. In the event of an abnormal situation (exceeding a critical level), an alert message is sent to one of the satellites, then relayed by the network of ground stations deployed on five continents. These alert messages reach the end-user via a Service Center in near-real time. This alerting process is made possible by Kinéis’ low-speed, low-power, simple and reliable global connectivity.
The idea of publishing a white paper arose from the dual objective of not only taking stock of the hydrological issues encountered in France and abroad, taking into account a market that is opening up to monitoring, but also identifying innovative solutions for better management of water resources.
The aim was to meet institutional and industrial players, as well as experts and solution developers, to see how existing solutions could be combined with the advantages of Kinéis spatial connectivity. This unprecedented combination creates systems of hitherto unrivalled effectiveness, based on 3 types of concrete and essential action:
- better anticipation of floods to protect populations,
- better monitoring to better understand hydrological phenomena,
- better management of infrastructures for better management and distribution of drinking water, by alerting to possible network leaks (better identification of problems).
The importance of data to hydrology
Heir to an environmental conscience through the Argos system it operates, the Toulouse-based company du New Space leverages its commitment and expertise in data transmission for the prevention and management of natural hazards.
Today, data remains an essential component of this new management approach. Whether meteorological, topographical (river mapping), spatial or derived from in situ measurements, experts aggregate all these data and compare them with hydrological models.
However, these hydrological models need to be improved: they require more data (in terms of quantity and quality), with greater precision, over more monitored locations and with a higher frequency of data collection.
Kinéis connectivity represents a major advantage in terms of data frequency and coverage of white zones. In fact, the revisit time of its satellites over the same point on the globe is very short (just a few minutes in 2024), compared with some conventional observation satellites, such as the Franco-American SWOT program, whose revisit time is 21 days.
The Kinéis white paper is part of a growing political awareness, reflected in the presentation of the government’s water conservation plan by the French President at the end of March, with the aim of achieving 10% water savings by 2030. The plan focuses on 5 key areas: accelerating water efficiency, combating leakage, preventing pollution, improving governance of water management and implementing appropriate pricing, and preventing droughts.
With the publication of its white paper on hydrology and new water management, through innovative solutions, Kinéis is helping to raise awareness of global issues that affect our very survival.
Thanks to the launch of the Kinéis constellation in spring 2024, the first French and European constellation dedicated to the Internet of Things, Kinéis is contributing to these new solutions to meet the challenges of hydrology and water resource management, a vital issue for Humanity.
“Keeping in touch with what matters to you”
Editor: Sébastien Martignac
In collaboration with Guillaume Triquet, Natural Hazards Business Manager, and Florian Hoorelbeke, Project Engineer, at Kinéis.