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1. General description

general info

 

 

2. Project outline

Project description

The subject of the project solution is the implementation of a set of instruments of a multi-channel automated system of monitoring of electrical impedance of the porous environment and its changes caused by loading a monitored site or a monitored point with water. The project follows the experience obtained by solving Project E!3838, when we developed a 128-channel, fully digitised device Z-meter with remote data transmission. The given system works with an indirect method of electrical impedance spectrometry and its implementation allows for measuring both the real (electric resistance or conductivity) and the imaginary parts (reactance) of electrical impedance. The system was primarily applied in monitoring soil moisture changes (electric conductivity) caused by its suction capability (bank, induced, from precipitation) and by water infiltration. The aim of the submitted project is to modify the given system for manual measurement, to extend the offer of the existing system with an option of choice of the number of measuring points in a set each having 16 measuring channels and to enable recharging a battery source with a solar panel in case of its permanent mounting at a monitored site. To achieve the given aim, we will again apply the principle of monitoring changes of non-electric quantity through electric quantities, when the indirect non-invasive method is electrical impedance spectrometry (or tomography). The method of electrical impedance spectrometry (EIS) allows for indicating changes in electrical impedance in space and time. Its principle is to monitor the given changes in electrical impedance of soils in complex form, whereby it is possible to monitor both changes caused particularly by loading soils with water (measuring the real frequency-independent part of electrical impedance) and changes, if any, in their material composition (measuring the imaginary frequency-dependent component of electrical impedance). The complexity of the problem consists especially in the non-stationary water flow through the unsaturated soil environment. It is experimentally proven that the coefficient of hydraulic conductivity of unsaturated soil is 3 -4 orders lower than in saturated soil and it is generally known that the content of water in soils (moisture) significantly participates in their shear strength. On the one hand, this is caused by the intergranular bonds of clay minerals, which are reduced under the action of water; in grains of larger dimensions forming especially the skeleton of sands, they are increased under the action of the surface tension of water, which is manifested as untrue (false) cohesion. Added to this are viscose effects of water and water pressure in pores under the action of an external load, which changes in relation to permeability by the effect of load action. For this reason, the monitoring of the content of water in earth bodies is of great significance in geotechnical practice. Due to the great variability of soils (granulometry, material composition, consistency, etc.), it is necessary to pay increased attention also to the interpretation of findings detected by monitoring during the application of indirect, but often also direct, methods. The study of the problems of water flow through soil has led to a design and verification of a highly sensitive laboratory electric measuring device, the laboratory verification of which was conducted by solving GACR Projects No. 103/01/0057 of implementations of a laboratory system for application to protective earthen dams. In the course of the solution of Grant Project No. 103/04/0741, a device was developed, allowing for monitoring changes in moisture on dam bodies in situ. When carrying out International Project E!3838, this system was innovative and was verified in other application conditions at different sites. It will be possible to further apply the monitoring of changes taking place in the porous environment being loaded with water, and the measurement of the movement of the free surface water table for the calibration and verification of mathematical models, the location of failures of soil cohesion, the monitoring of soil moisture in terms of irrigation needs, or other changes. Keywords: electrical impedance, monitoring system, environment.

 

Technological development envisaged

The Czech holder -coordinator of the project with a team of co-researchers will deal with the solution, implementation and production of the modular design of the automated system of measuring changes in electrical impedance in the porous environment. The solution includes the implementation of measuring devices Z-meters in the number of measuring points according to market and application demands, including the systems of remote data transmission. The concept of the demanded monitoring will be followed by a design configuration of the measuring device, when emphasis will be placed particularly on low-energy, long-lasting, autonomous operation (recharging the operational battery by a solar cell). An important implementation element is a structural design of measuring probes for the selected application and site. The assumed time of the solution of the given part of the project is 18 months from the commencement of the project. In the course of the set time, suitable sites will gradually be selected according to the demands of the practice (both on the territory of the main project manager and also at the project partners), where the given changes taking place in the porous environment will be monitored. At the partners' workplaces, operators of the device will be trained, ensuring the continuous monitoring, processing and evaluation of the detected data and their delivery to the project holder. The assumed time of the monitoring of the selected sites is 14 months from the installation of the device. At the workplace of the Czech holder -coordinator of the project, work will be focused on both the areas of obtaining new findings during laboratory investigation (final works of bachelor's, master's or doctoral study programmes, laboratory analyses of soil, etc.) and particularly the application spheres of monitoring the state of protective earthen dams and its changes and the verification of detection by means of other methods. It can generally be stated that protective dams are, as compared to e.g. reservoir dams, loaded with greater uncertainties regarding the state of the base materials used as well as installation technology. It is line constructions of not only local but also worldwide significance, the length of which ranges in hundreds to thousands of kilometres. Due to the great variability of the natural environment, its geologic structure, geotechnical variety, rugged morphology, hydrogeology and wide typology of individual constructions, it is necessary to view every protective dam, including their partial segments, as an original and unrepeatable construction. Many of the given constructions are affected by the uncertainty of geological and geotechnical conditions of the environment due to their longevity. In such installations there is usually no documentation describing their composition or the technology of construction. Furthermore, in the past these constructions were heightened, repaired or reinforced, and thus they are again confronted with a serious question of how they can resist extreme hydrodynamic stress at flood flow rates. From the statistical point of view, it shows that most failures and disasters of protective dams were caused by either their spill-over or seepage. It is necessary to re-emphasise that both the phenomena, and above all the matter of seepage (through the dam body and its basement -underflow of the dam body), are closely connected with the great variability of dam construction and the adequate uncertainty of their real parameters. The causes of the given failures then closely relate to the already-mentioned specifics of such constructions, the most striking of which is the effect of their irregular hydrodynamic stress. The rise of the surface in the stream during flooding and its decline when returning to the steady-state hydrological regime brings about distinct changes in the state of the protective dam and its basement. The consequence of the changes in hydrodynamic stress (the most striking is the effect of body force from percolating water in time and space) is a change in stress in soil and in the dam basement, accompanied by a change in their strength. With time and space changes in load, changes include displacements, relative deformations, stress and strength of soil and simultaneously also pressure and velocity of liquid components -liquid and gas which is contained, in case of unsaturated soil, in soil pores and in liquid which partly fills soil pores. The three given components are mutually influenced and also their volumes are changed due to both the deformation of the porous structure of soil and the increase of the degree of its saturation with water and physical and chemical processes at the boundary of, and inside, liquid components (liquid and gas). When water is lowering during the subsiding of extreme hydrological load, the opposite phenomenon occurs. The given changes have often a dangerous impact not only on the local, but also on the global stability of the protective dam and its basement. Increasing the reliability of the prognosis of the development of the state of a given heterogeneous multi-component environment is possible to a certain extent by using methods of statistical modelling. But the reliability of modelling is subject to both the knowledge of conditions which lead to the given changes inside the dams formed by soils and founded on the earthen basement, and the reliability with which the parameters of the numerical model are determined, i.e. the physical properties of soils, particularly their hydraulic conductivity and resistance to the effects of percolating water. Therefore, the demand of the gradual creation of a database of input data needed for the description of the state of protective earthen dams and the behaviour of such installations by means of their continuous long-lasting monitoring is ever more often and urgently being made. The practical result will be a methodological aid applicable for similar sites. Similar activities will take place on the territory of the Slovak partner with an option to extend applications into the areas of agriculture, drinking-water supply and sports use of land. Concurrently, the experimental measurement of soil contamination (e.g. the spraying of salt water along roads during their treatment in winter months) with consequences for the quality of groundwater collected for drinking purposes will take place. The given tests will be performed under the guidance of the Swiss partner's workplace -BASEL TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY, and their results will serve for the verification and calibration of mathematical models and the optimisation of the user software being developed for the given type of tasks at that workplace. At the workplace of the Italian project partner, attention is paid above all to the monitoring of changes in moisture under specific conditions of monitoring the state of the rock environment. The work, under the guidance of the Italian workplace IRSA-CNR, will be focused on the design of suitable monitoring probes, the methodology of measurement and the selection of an appropriate available mathematical model for processing the monitored phenomena. The Cyprian partner's workplace (EEWRC) will focus its attention on the development of software enabling the reproduction of phenomena detected by means of electrical impedance spectrometry and occurring in the monitored porous environment, by testing and calibration of the measuring device for its application in agriculture (CNE). The leader of the Belgian partner's workplace ? OSTEND TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY, in cooperation with the world mining companies JAN DE NUL and DEME, under the prerequisite of extending knowledge in the area of monitoring geotechnical characteristics (grain size distribution, relative moisture, density, hydraulic conductivity, etc.), prepares the implementation of the device in the given area. The final part of the project (4 months) will be devoted to the complex processing of the results of monitoring, their evaluation and the offer of the automated measuring system to practice (particularly to the organisations of Povodi / basin agencies /, local administration, and engineering and safety supervision /TBD/).

Markets application and exploitation

The indicative implementation outputs of the EUREKA project are:

  • Production of a Z-meter;
  • Development and production of a remote data transmission system;
  • Development and implementation of processing and evaluation software for the implemented devices;
  • Results of monitoring at selected sites;
  • Results achieved by mathematical modelling; and
  • Response from the practice.

These will be processed in the form of interim annual reports and in a final report on the course of solution and will be further presented at conferences and in professional journals. There is a prerequisite of the market application of results of the project, particularly due to the non-invasiveness of the selected monitoring techniques and TBD with an impact on the possibility of protection of properties and lives with the appropriate placing and regime on the hydraulic structure (VD). The project solution will enable the qualitative change in end-use properties of the device applying the EIS method -a Z-meter by digitising the measuring route and by implementing remote data transmission (the increase of comfort for users and the facilitation of applicability in practice). From the designing point of view, attention is also paid to the solution of measuring electrodes and their unification for particular applications. An advantage is their vertical division, which allows for transmitting a driving signal and recording responses in a certain layer of the porous environment. When monitoring contamination of the porous environment, contamination spreading in water streams and when performing similar work, it is necessary to install a reference meter of conductivity for monitoring changes in the quality of water. The realisation of the monitoring system and its solution is applied to environmental problems -the safety of earth protective dams (companies 'Povodi' in the CZECH REPUBLIC, SLOVAK REPUBLIC, ZVHS), pollution spreading in rivers, flood protection (water management institutions, municipalities), prevention of natural disasters (for example landslides), protection of ground water sources, contaminants transport and mathematical modelling (CH), water transport (dams on rivers in the SLOVAK REPUBLIC), electrical impedance tomography and device testing, mathematical modelling (CY), and device testing in rock (IT). The expansion to other areas of use and distribution of applications in the partners' countries is ensured by participation in conferences and seminars, both in our country and abroad, by incorporation in educational programs (Faculty of Civil Engineering of BRNO UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY, TU Basel, STU in Bratislava) and within CZV of water management and environmental planners and specialists. The method and market application of the monitoring system will be disseminated by means of the trade network of GEOTEST BRNO, A.S. which will be used in Europe and worldwide, the network of the daughter company GEOTEST BRATISLAVA and pedagogic and scientific and research contacts of the participating universities -the Faculty of Civil Engineering of BRNO UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY, TU Basel, STU Bratislava and the UNIVERSITY OF BARI, CYPRUS and BELGIUM.

 

Project codes

BSI

NACE

 

3. Main participant

Company Geotest Brno, Inc. 
Šmahova, 112
659 01 Brno
Czech Republic
 
  Tel +420 548 12 51 11
Fax +420 545 21 79 79
 

 

 

 

www.geotest.cz

 

Contact Rndr. Lubomir Prochazka 
Director
  Tel +420 602 50 45 66

 

 

 

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Organisation type  SME
Participant role Main


Contribution to project

The tasks of the main participant GEOTEST BRNO, A.S. consist in co-ordination of the activities of other participants and solving some partial problems, especially in application of the EIS method in geotechnics. Knowledge of the water contents in soil is very important for its great influence on shear strength of soil mass. Shear strength of soil mass is one of the main phenomena on stability of slopes, both natural and artificial. Therefore the activity of GEOTEST BRNO is aimed at measurement of the moisture in slopes on embankments of the Water Basin of the Brno dam and in landslide bodies in the CZECH REPUBLIC and in BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA. The small content of water in sands has an influence on increasing its shear strength owing to genesis of false cohesion. It is measured on the locality of Moravian Sahara in the South Moravia Region. Measurement of the water content in the lining of the tunnel in BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA will serve for the design of the reconstruction of the tunnel lining. It is the activity of GEOTEST BRNO as well. Monitoring of water content in grass layers of golf courses allows for determining the most convenient of the concepts of the field irrigation. GEOTEST BRNO undertakes this activity on the golf course at Svratka. The monitoring of the ground water level and pollution spreading are carried out within the orders of GEOTEST BRNO, A.S. not only in the CZECH REPUBLIC and in the SLOVAK REPUBLIC, but also in other countries (such as the Balkans, MONGOLIA). As regards the monitoring of landslides, the company focuses predominantly on the region of Ostrava and on the banks of the Becva river. GEOTEST BRNO, A.S. and its cooperating companies concentrate on ground water and the monitoring of its quality for example in the SLOVAK REPUBLIC (Zitny ostrov), during the monitoring of the stability of motorways in the CZECH REPUBLIC, SLOVAK REPUBLIC, etc. Accredited laboratories resolve mainly issues related to the environment. The developed method, its measurement and evaluation system will extend the implemented projects, contracts and works in both quality and quantity. GEOTEST BRNO cooperates on the construction of EIS Z-meters applicable to hard rock and sands.

 

Expertise

The expertise and experience follows from the business and professional specialisation of the company, recorded in the Trade Register, from the introduced quality systems ISO (International Standardisation Organisation) 9000, 14 000 and 18 000 and related, from the accreditation of laboratories, specialised accreditations and certifications of workers. The success and quality of the solution is supported by references and participations in exhibitions, fairs, seminars and conferences. The professional specialisation is in the fields of geology, geo-technology, water management, the environment, with close links with the government, ministries, companies, municipalities in the CZECH REPUBLIC, Europe, but also in MONGOLIA, America and other countries. The dissemination and application within the EUREKA project into suitable task solutions will result in innovation and a better-quality solution, comparable with the use of similar measuring systems (for example U.S.A., CANADA, ENGLAND). GEOTEST BRNO, A.S. is one of the biggest Czech firms dealing with protection of the environment and geology. The company is a reliable partner with a 40-year tradition and experienced staff including experts with long international experience. The company was established in 1968 under the name GEOTEST BRNO, N.P. In 1992 it was re-organised from a state-owned enterprise into a private company. Besides the headquarters in Brno, which houses 90 percent of our resources, the company also has offices in Praha, Ostrava, Zlin, Dvur Kralove n. L., Zdar n. S. and Ceske Budejovice. Under the name of GEOTEST BRATISLAVA, S.R.O. our subsidiary is well established in the SLOVAK REPUBLIC. GEOTEST?s expert activities may be divided into 6 main branches, each headed by its section manager: -Water and rock protection research, remediation activities for environmental protection. -Waste dumps, waste management, waste management plans. -Geotechnics and engineering geology. -Hydrogeology. -Expert reports, studies, expert opinions (E.I.A., ecological audits, due diligence, risk analysis, feasibility study, cost benefit analysis). -Management Systems -Environmental Management System, Quality Management System, -Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems, Integrated Management Systems, Integrated Pollution and Prevention Control (IPPC). In each of these branches GEOTEST BRNO, A.S. fulfils client's requests for either a start-to-finish sequential project or for only one separate stage in the process. A sequential project generally has 3 levels: 1. The level of studies, expert reports, documentation, opinions, consultations, literature searches, supervision, map documentation etc. 2. The level of exploratory work: complex research including some technical work. Possible courses of action are identified, each with accompanying implementation options. 3. The level of implementation: construction work, remediation, decontamination, geological engineering, geotechnical and on-site supervision, sampling and groundwater regime testing. Specialists of GEOTEST BRNO, A.S. carry out more than 600 various projects a year, involving not only consultancy and advisory services but also complex supplier activities. Successful execution of such projects is guaranteed by the high expertness and proficiency of our specialists as well as the comprehensive technical background represented namely by the hydro-chemical laboratories, laboratories of soil and rock mechanics (both certified by the Czech Institute for Accreditation), along with the geodesy, geophysics and informatics departments.

 

4. Partner

 

Company Slovak Technical University Bratislava/Civil Engineering Fac 
Radlinského, 11
813 68 Bratislava
Slovak Republic
 
  Tel +421 2 52 74 111
Fax +421 2 592 74 606
 
  www.svf.stuba.sk
 
Contact Prof. Ing. Phd Andrej Soltesz
Vice Dean
  Tel +421 2 592 74 320
Fax +421 2 592 74 606
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Organisation type  University
Participant role Interested

 

Contribution to project

The partner's establishment is equipped with a hydraulic laboratory and PC classrooms. It is able to fit out the monitoring system probes professionally, to ensure its full operability, to collect, process and evaluate output data, as well as to evaluate the function of all the evaluating system. Professors, senior lecturers, engineers, as well as doctorands and students working in the cooperating department are experienced in research, development, project work, implementation and operation of water management buildings and equipment related to the environment, which they impart both to professionals and the wider public in the form of scientific lectures and papers. The partner solves or cooperates independently in solving complex practical tasks by physical and mathematical modelling (turning circles of sluices -Ing. Moziesik, studies of the level regime of ground water -Doc. Soltez, Doc. Bednarova, Ing. Barokova, impact of water management buildings on the creation and protection of the environment -Doc. Oblozinsky, hydraulic power stations Doc. Dusicka, etc.). Funding. It emerges from the legal form that funding of the operation of the university will be ensured from government subsidies. The solver and co-workers from the partner's establishment participating in the project solution are bound to devote a part of their jobs to science and research, which is taken into account for funding. The partner's position in the market segment we focus on -Technical University, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Department of Hydro-technology. The partner has experience solving national and international projects (Sokrates/Erasmus, Leonardo, Visegrad Fund, VEGA, grant projects, etc.). It cooperates with major Czech institutions (VUVH, Slovak Academy of Science, Vodohospodarska vystavba (Water management Construction), Bratislava, Hydroelectric Power Stations, Trencin, Ministry of the Environment, companies "Povodi" of Dunaj, Vah, Hron, Bodrog and Hornad and others) and foreign institutions (University of Technology in Prague, University of Technology in Brno, TU Dresden, BOKU Vienna, Austria TU Zagreb, Croatia, TU Gdansk, Poland, ETH Zuerich, Switzerland and others). Calibration and verification of the soil moisture measuring device using a TDR measuring system as well as gravity measuring method in conditions of East Slovak Lowlands. The measurement will be used for measuring soil moisture changes with the creation of wetlands using an artificial hydraulic supply of water in conditions of heavy (clayey) soils.

Expertise

For a long time the partner has been focused on the study of surface and ground water circulation, on the possibilities to monitor the circulation, its physical and mathematical modelling and mutual interaction of the environment and people. In view of the long-term and mutually profitable cooperation of the partner with organisations of "Povodi" SK, for the project solution and extension of the application possibilities of its output, its unambiguous benefit is the possibility to monitor the ground water circulation in the selected location with a quality that differs from the conditions in the CZECH REPUBLIC (specified by the geological description and earth analysis). During application of the monitoring system, trained workers will be able to highlight any weaknesses that may appear during the operation, which will enhance the quality of the final product.

 

4. Partner

 

Company Faculty Of Civil Engineering -Lab. Of Water Management Research (Iws) Brno University Of Technology 
Veveří, 95
602 00 Brno
Czech Republic
 
  Tel +420 541 14 72 84
Fax +420 541 14 72 88
 
  www.vutbr.cz
www.fce.vutbr.cz
www.lvv.cz
 
Contact Phd.-Ing. Jana Pařílková
Assistant Lecturer
  Tel +32 59 56 90 00
Fax +32 59 56 90 01
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Organisation type  University
Participant role Partner

 

Contribution to project

The Laboratory of Water Management Research has long-term experience and tradition in research in branch water structures and water management. Most of the research works carried out in recent years meet the concrete requirements asked by practice. For instance, research determines the capacity and design steps to send water streams from the radial gate during observations of air flow in individual variants of designed bottom outlets of the right by-pass tunnel of the hydraulic structure Les Kralovstvi at the Elbe River, or the research dealing with the sediment transport in streams documented by the physical model of the weir at the Moravka River in Vyssi Lhoty. Many of the works carried out within the research became the methodological rules of the given problem. For example, the design of the object called 'the pear', initiated by the need for kinetic energy absorption of the stream by pleasant natural means, was solved within the research of the B/h characteristic of the riverbed getting wide and narrow. The structure, at present built on the Emme River, SWITZERLAND, was resolved for the concrete locality of the Moravka River. The research into the method of monitoring the earth dike and the process of its breakage and destruction using a new method (thermal scalar field and electrical impedance spectrometry) and electronic devices (THERM, Z-meter) was an answer to the catastrophic floods in 1997 and 2002. The importance of the physical modelling is not only based on the solution of concrete requests. At present, the rapid progress of electronic measurement instruments and computing techniques results in the application of the physical modelling in the mathematical models (Fluent 6, HEC-RAS, MIKE Zero-11 and 21, ANSYS 8, HYDRO 11, and demo version of Aquadyne, SMS 8.1, CCHE2D 2.0) with calibration becoming an integral part of tasks connected with the physical modelling. Monitoring is necessary for the verification and calibration of a mathematical model. As regards further handling of the data, the knowledge of work with digital geo-engineering maps (GIS), experience of available mathematical models of the ground water circulation, orientation towards the possibilities of the use of modern methods and electronic measuring devices used in monitoring are required. The partner's position in the market segment is what we focus on -TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Department of Water Structures. The partner has experience of carrying out national and international projects (grant projects GACR, ESF, Sokrates/Erasmus, Visegrad Fund, Leonardo, etc.). It cooperates with major institutions (VUVH, Czech and Slovak Academy of Science, Water management Construction Bratislava, Hydroelectric Power Stations, Ministry of the Environment, Ministry of Agriculture of the Czech Republic, companies "Povodi" of Morava, Odra, Labe, Vltava and Ohre, Agricultural Water Management Authority, Forests of the Czech Republic, state enterprise, University of Technology in Prague and others) and foreign institutions (University of Technology in Bratislava, TU Dresden, TU Kosice, BOKU Vienna, TU Austria, TU Gdansk, Poland, TU Basel, Switzerland and others). The Laboratory of Water Management Research is the vehicle of the ideas of the EUREKA project.

Expertise

Physical modelling is the specific branch of scientific research allowing the observation of complex phenomena and processes taking place at real constructions on their, usually down-scaled, models, including interdependences. The Laboratory of Water Management Research at the Department of Water Structures of the Faculty of Civil Engineering, BRNO UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY has long-term experience and continues the tradition in this branch of research. The Laboratory of Water Management Research has a more than 85-year tradition and it represents the oldest laboratory in the Austria-Hungary Monarchy and the third oldest experimental laboratory in Europe. The laboratory was constructed between 1914 and 1916. During World War I, the Czech Technical University including laboratory served as a field hospital. Thereupon the beginning of the first experimental work started again in 1917. The research activity has followed practical needs. The earth dikes and their destruction were studied in the context of the disaster on Bila Desna, where the earth dike broke on 8.9.1916. There are theoretical studies known to date concerning the influence of laminar and turbulent flow as well as surface tension on weir discharge measuring. Similarly, questions of model similarity of physical weir models were also experimentally solved at the laboratory. The results of these experiments are well known not only in Europe, but also in the U.S.A. and BRAZIL. Recent scientific research projects are oriented on: * Flow in a reservoir (temperature stratification and water pollution). * Monitoring of earth dike and the process of their breakage and destruction using new method and electronic devices. * Research of riverbed forming processes and stability of watercourses. * Research of intake and outlet structure flowing e.g. in small hydraulic power plants. Research of suspended matter and sediment load of rivers. * Study of the effect of the stream on floating ship and measurements of the acting pressures. * Measurement of turbulent flow, point velocity of flow and experimental calibration of current meter. * Authorised activities for discharge measurements. The Laboratory of Water Management Research uses modern measurement techniques (Laser Doppler Anemometry, Particle Image Velocimetry, Ultrasonic Velocity Profiling, THERMal scalar field, Electrical Impedance Spectrometry and so on). With the expansion of computer techniques and digital data transfer and treatment, physical and mathematical modelling can join together. The main activity domain is young people?s education. For a long time the laboratory has been focused on studying the surface and ground water circulation, on the possibilities to monitor the circulation, its physical and mathematical modelling and mutual interaction of the environment and people. In view of the long-term and mutually profitable cooperation of the partner with organisations of "POVODI" CR, for the project solution and extension of the application possibilities of its output, its unambiguous benefit is the possibility to monitor the ground water circulation in the selected location. The experience gained during the project process will enhance the qualification and abilities of graduates in their application in practice, with specialisations in environment protection, project activities, monitoring, and mathematical and physical modelling.

 

4. Partner

 

Company Geotest Bratislava, Ltd 
Stavbařská, 27
820 08 Bratislava 8400
Slovak Republic
 
  Tel +421 245 640 075
Fax +421 245 640 078
 
  www.geotestba.sk
Contact Ing. Phd. Martin Mikita 
Production Manager
   
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Organisation type  SME
Participant role Interested


Contribution to project

The company offers professional services in the following fields: * Geological survey, * Geological and restoration works for environmental protection and planning, * Engineering service and technical counselling relating to waterworks, * Environmental Impact Assessment, * Solution to the waste management and landfill problems, * Counselling in the field of the introduction of quality management systems according to the ISO 9000 Standard and environmental management systems according to the ISO 14000 Standard, * Corporate finance strategies, * Sale of electric-contact-based level indicators, apparatus for measuring the air-water-oil interface and samplers produced by NPK Europe Mfg. Ltd., a limited liability company. The main contribution to the project is in the application area of the method of electrical impedance spectrometry, where the company has confirmed experiences.

 

Expertise

The expertise and experience follows from the business and professional specialisation of the company. The professional specialisation is in the fields of: -geology, -geo-technology, -water management, -the environment with close links with companies and municipalities in the SLOVAK REPUBLIC (Slovnaft Inc., Slovnaft BENZINOL Inc., CHEMOLAK Inc., ZsVak s.e., OLO Inc. and others) and also in Europe and other countries. GEOTEST BRATISLAVA LTD. has experience with international projects such as EHK OSN, HYTECH-Hybrid technologies for groundwater protection and the EU Program Craft.

 

4. Partner

 

Company Cne Technology 
Democratias, 5
2643 Ergates
Cyprus
 
  Tel +357 22 62 40 90
Fax +357 22 62 40 92
 
  www.cnetechnology.com
Contact Dr. Elias Psimolophitis
Managing Director
   
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Organisation type  SME
Participant role Interested


Contribution to project

The organisation will design and develop a new novel type of system for soil impedance spectroscopy measurements (EIS) complemented with multi-channel wireless EIS electrodes for quick setup and ease of use as well as with integrated GPRS/GPS communication for transfer of data either in the form of simple messages or integrated within an advanced GIS environment for automated irrigation purposes. Potential users of the instruments are Farmers, Academia, Agricultural Research Institutes, Ministry of Agriculture, etc. The following modules will be developed by CNE and can be added as options to the new novel soil moisture system: -EIS electrodes of short length up to 1m and one measurement point; -EIS electrodes of variable length and a number of measurement points at different heights; -Data collection using wireless protocols such as ZigBee, etc, which allows cheap deployments of wireless, and often energy harvesting, sensors in the field domain; -Central field module including meteorological sensors where collected data will be transferred via GPRS/Wi-Fi network technologies; -Central field module ready to be connected and control of an automated irrigation system; -Web-based System to include GIS field owner data, soil moisture mapping, meteorological data, water activities in the fields, historical trends, etc. In addition, the new soil moisture system will be enabled to accommodate future expansions including: -Connect image camera with recognition software for monitoring the product growth and correlate to image information for watering activities; -Water management intelligent software can be integrated within the web-based platform for optimised use of water. The system will be tested at the laboratory and in-situ for verification of its operation to serve the needs of the end customers of the system. The system trial should be carried out at the CYPRUS AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH INSTITUTE where fruit and vegetable fields with automated irrigation systems are currently in place.

Expertise

Established in 1997 in CYPRUS, CNE TECHNOLOGY LTD has become a National Centre of Excellence in the fields of Laboratory Services (Testing of materials, Metrology & Calibration of instruments) and Applied Research. CNE's state-of-the-art Laboratories, housed in privately owned facilities of 1,000 square meters, are fully equipped to perform a wide range of testing, product certification and calibration services under a strict quality system, which is accredited under ISO/IEC 17025 from European accreditation bodies and certified under ISO 9001. The testing laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and serves most of the needs of both the state and the industry in CYPRUS in terms of testing a variety of materials and products (metals, plastics, composites, wood, fabrics, electrical, etc.). Managers of CNE are also members of National Standard Technical Committees. The calibration laboratory is equipped with the highest line of standards in CYPRUS and covers more than 95% of the calibration needs of the industry. The current investments in state-of-the-art equipment surpasses 1.2 million euros and CNE's wide customer portfolio (more than 1,000) includes manufacturing companies, government institutions and academic establishments. Using the continuously upgraded infrastructure and know-how, complemented by strategic partnerships with a number of organisations and academic institutions, CNE designs and implements, or participates in applied research projects for the development of innovative solutions for its customers in order to help them improve their competitive position in the market. CNE's research activities also expand to in-house product developments dealing with specialised market needs and technologically advanced products like instruments, testing equipment complemented with wireless sensor technologies and software development. Among CNE's developments are a patented product titled "Shot Target System" and two products that are in the process of patenting, entitled "Laboratory permeability apparatus for masonry" and "Automated wireless trap system for monitoring agricultural insects". The sales department of CNE with a customer portfolio ranging from industry, academia and government has expanded rapidly the last few years and is able to deal with marketing and sales of its new specialised products internationally. The research department has expertise and has acquired 3D design packages, a 3D rapid prototyping machine and 3D laser scanners, a machine shop and has access to a big range of testing equipment and machinery. It has expertise in the design and construction of innovative prototypes and writing procedures for those. The managers and personnel of CNE have experience in product design, technical filling for CE marking and certification of the products under development for compliance with relevant European directives and a good knowledge and expertise in writing patents. CNE's experience with national and EU projects expands to the following fields: Design and development of prototypes (innovative machinery, equipment & testing instruments); -Wireless sensor and communication technologies; -Image analysis and processing; -Design of new production processes; -Industrial and medical automations; -Testing of materials and products (metals, fabrics, plastics, wood, composites, electrical, machinery, etc.); -Metrology, industrial and field measurements; -Nano-composite materials such as monolayer & multilayer physical vapour deposition (PVD) coatings; Finite Element Analysis (FEM); -Energy conservation technologies, renewable energy, especially solar-thermal; -Conformity testing with technical standards, CE marking and customised specifications.

 

4. Partner

 

Company Water Research Institute Of Cnr National Reseach Council (Cnr) 
Area Di Ricerca Di Roma-Montelibretti Via Salaria Km 29, 3
000 16 Monterotondo
Italy
 
  Tel +39 06 906 72 850
Fax +39 06 906 72 787
 
  www.irsa.cnr.it
Contact Eng. Michele Vurro 
Head Of Research
  Tel +39 080 582 05 49
Fax +39 080 531 33 65
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Organisation type  Research Institute
Participant role Partner

 

Contribution to project

Calibration of soil humidity measuring tools using the Electrical Impedance Spectrometry (EIS) method. ABSTRACT For the study of the processes occurring in an unsaturated zone it is very important to know the degree of humidity or water content of subsoil. The modelling of the water flow and the transport of contaminants possibly found in it cannot do without the measurements of the water retention function which depends on the water content and the pressure under which it is contained in the soil matrix. The study of environmental problems deriving from the transport of contaminants through the unsaturated zone is therefore highly dependent on knowledge of how water content values are distributed in the subsoil. For this reason several devices or probes, with different characteristics and permitting, on the basis of various physical principles, the measurement of the above parameter, can be found in the literature and on the market. In the project, we have the aim to design, to develop, and to realise an automatic system, consisting of Z-meter 2 probes and a detector, to measure water content and to test it in different soils and rocks both in laboratory and in different experimental sites. The CNR-IRSA activity can be added to the work of the laboratory of the Engineering Faculty at Brno (probe design and wireless detection system) and the work of the Swiss and Czech partners (dealing with the device application in the field). The CNA-IRSA activity in this project will be finalised in order to calibrate the designed experimental device (Z-meter 2) in specific laboratory studies, using not only soils but also rocks collected from the selected experimental sites. In particular CNR-IRSA, as the Italian partner, would participate in the project developing the following activities: 1. Calibration of the Z-meter 2 device in laboratory The calibration of the Z-meter 2 device can be conveniently achieved by applying it to laboratory microcosms, using the soil and rock samples. In fact only in a microcosm can the water content be determined and controlled for different experimental conditions. Moreover, the geo-pedological characteristics of each soil type studies will be determined. This fact makes it possible to compare the water content values obtained by the Z-meter 2 probe with the predetermined ones. The function obtained from the regressions, between the values measured by the probe versus those measured with different methods, will allow for obtaining the calibration curve for each selected soil. The tests will be conducted in controlled conditions taking account of the different temperatures, at the CNA-IRSA ROCAS laboratory located in Bari. 2. Calibration of the Z-meter 2 device in field experimental sites There are many difficulties in using in the rock outcrop commercial devices designed to be used with soil, such as tensiometers and probes to measure the water content. For this reason, the aim of the activity of this point is to calibrate the Z-meter 2 device for use with rock by overcoming the difficulties in insertion of the probes in the hard medium and by designing robust probes to be installed in the rock. 3. Data-base design A relational database will be designed and realised in order to store experimental data collected during the activities described in point 1 and 2. An easy interface for date retrieval will also be implemented in order to facilitate potential users.

Expertise

EXPERTISE OF THE INSTITUTE Since 1968, the WATER RESEARCH INSTITUTE (IRSA) has been involved in finding solutions to problems of water resource management and protection, and in developing processes and technologies for potabilisation and wastewater treatment. The institutional activity of IRSA is directed towards the enhancement of scientific and technological knowledge aimed at providing: * Parliament and the administration with all information they need to issue appropriate legislation concerning water; management agencies with the best methodologies for water resource utilisation and protection; and national industries with state-of-the-art processes and prototypes in order to enhance their competitiveness in the market. To achieve such complex goals, IRSA operates over the whole range of technological processes including basic and applied research, environmental studies, processes and methodologies development, and pilot and full-size plant design, supported by cost evaluation and result dissemination. The Institute headquarters are located in Rome. Other territorial sections are located in Bari (water and wastewaters technologies) and in Brugherio -Milano (hydrobiology and eco-toxicology laboratories). The Institute is structured into technical and scientific departments, dedicated to Water Resources Management, Water Quality and Water and Wastewater treatment, covering the main aspects related to water studies. EXPERIENCE OF THE INDIVIDUALS * MICHELE VURRO graduated from the University of Bari as a hydraulic engineer in 1980. He has been a researcher at CNA-IRSA (Water Research Institute, National Research Council) since 1982 and is now Head of Research with responsibility for methodologies and techniques for protecting and managing water resources under limited availability. He has been involved in research into mathematical models of flow, transport and diffusion in groundwater, field measurements of dispersion parameters, groundwater artificial recharge, application of expert systems, and geo-statistical tools applied to groundwater quality. He was contract professor in hydrology and hydrogeology at the University of Basilicata and he is still a lecturer in graduate and post-graduate level courses. He has supervised PhD theses. He is the author of about 80 scientific papers, coordinates contracts and research projects with different National Agencies (Local Authority, Regional Administration, Water Authority, Minister) and has organised national meetings. He has been involved in EU projects such as CHESS (IV Framework Programme) and EWAQC-EWAT (Interreg II C Programme CADSES). Now he is involved in HarmonIT (Harmon-Information Technology aims to develop). * MARIA CLEMENTINA CAPUTO geologist has been with the IRSA since May 1998. She conducts and publishes research on unsaturated flow and contamination problems; scientific lead of the ROCAS project; reviewing papers; teaching and creating instructional materials. Since 2000 she has mainly been involved in research on unsaturated flow with particular attention paid to experimental measurement techniques to evaluate hydraulic properties on samples of coherent porous rock. Her current research includes the design of a new laboratory method, based on quasi-steady unsaturated flow in a centrifugal field, for measuring rock properties and development of instrumentation for the method's implementation. * GIULIA BARBIERO graduated in Mathematics at Rome University in 1971 with an experimental thesis in Information Retrieval. Since 1974 she has worked as a Researcher in the National Research Council-Water Research Institute in the Water Resources Research Management department and since 1988 as Senior Researcher. She is author and co-author of scientific publications concerning creation and management of thematic databases in water resources, geographic information systems and information retrieval. She is in charge of environmental information, statistics and documentation services.

 

4. Partner

Company University Of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland/School Of Architecture, Civil Eng. And Geomatics/Inst Of Civil Eng
Gruendenstrasse, 40
4132 Muttenz
Switzerland
 
  Tel +41 61 46 74 719
Fax +41 61 46 74 610
  www.fhnw.ch
Contact Dr. Ing. Cinzia Miracapillo Jauslin 
Docent For Groundwater-Management
  Tel +41 61 46 74 719
Fax +41 61 74 67 4610
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Organisation type  University
Participant role Partner


Contribution to project

The partner has wide experience in solving national and international projects. It has a modern computer lab with the capacity of 25 seats, meeting the requirements for the task of mathematic modelling. The partner's establishment is multi-branch. It comprises the areas of research, development and testing of innovative technology. Professors, senior lecturers and engineers working at the cooperating university department impart their experience to students and doctorands in the program of life-long education, etc., and to students and doctorands of the University of Technology in Brno as part of Socrates/Erasmus programs as well. Co-solvers at the Swiss university will be managed by Doc. Dr. Cinzia Miracapillo, senior lecturer specialised in ground water modelling. The participating professors and senior lecturers are government employees and on account of their position a part of their jobs is devoted to science and research. The partner's position in the market segment of our focus -mathematic modelling of the water flow in soils -is clearly stated. It is necessary to take into consideration the fact that water flow occurs in a saturated and unsaturated environment and this phenomenon is not stationary. Monitoring is necessary for the verification and calibration of a mathematical model and for a better understanding of the physical processes. Roche, IWB, HydtroCosmos and BBl were partners in the previous EUREKA project E!3838 and can be considered a potential partner of the present project.

 

Expertise

The UNIVERSITY OF APPLIED SCIENCES FHNW has its focus on different disciplines, including environmental disciplines. The environmental discipline Water Resources Management is gaining increasing attention and importance. This field is going to be emphasised in research and teaching activities, as well as in engineering works carried out by the Institute. The Institute will be able to offer, starting from this year, courses on Water Resources Management for the master program which will be carried out at the national level. Groundwater Management, as a part of water resources management, finds there a suitable environment for developing the necessary tools to interpret data and strong support for the implementation of mathematical codes. The previous EUREKA project gave the Institute the EUREKA certificate as a label of qualification in applied research at the international level.

 

4. Partner

 

Company Energy, Environment And Water Research Center (Eewrc)
Kavafi Street, 20
2121 Nicosia
Cyprus
 
  Tel +357 22 20 86 00
Fax +357 22 20 86 25
  eewrc.cyi.ac.cy
www.mti.com
 
Contact Dr. Ing. Nicholas Polydorides
Ceew Post Doctoral Fellow
  Tel +44 1 617 32 48 489
Fax +44 1 483 520 222
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Organisation type  SME
Participant role Interested

Contribution to project

The organisation's contribution to the project will focus on developing the software tools required to produce the soil impedance maps from which the soil moisture distribution could be identified. * This requires a customised software utility that is based on existing state-of-the-art impedance imaging algorithms already developed. The models will be used mainly for three critical applications. * The calibration of the instrument in a laboratory environment. * The assessment of the robustness of the measurement protocol to physical and instrumentation noise, which in turn relates to optimising the sensitivity of the impedance measurement with respect to the targeted region. * The reconstruction of soil impedance images to yield soil moisture distribution or indeed soil spectrum spatial information, based on inverse problems? regularisation technology. * Design a controlled experiment to monitor the impact of pesticide in soil properties using multi-frequency impedance measurements (spectroscopy). * Perform in collaboration with the industrial partners a series of experiments including laboratory benchmarks and field surveys to test the performance and limitations of the instrument in singular frequency and spectroscopic operation mode.

Expertise

The Energy, Environment and Water Research Centre (EEWRC) of THE CYPRUS INSTITUTE addresses science, technology and policy issues concerning energy resources, production and management, water usage and management, and numerous environmental issues such as climate changes and their socioeconomic consequences and production and development of alternative forms of energy. The Centre will exploit its expertise and strategic location in order to address issues on energy, environment and water resources in the region, including the Near East and North Africa and in the EU. One of the main research priorities of EEWRC is to address the expected worsening of water scarcity in CYPRUS and Middle East North Africa countries. In particular, this involves investigating novel ways of reducing water consumption in agriculture, tourism and private households through technological measures as well as more efficient water administration and evaluating methods and procedures for water quality under monitoring conditions of water scarcity. The EEWRC hosts a number of researchers with extensive experience in geophysics, water research and instrumentation in the fields of energy, environment and water research. In effect its suitability for joining this multidisciplinary proposal as a Cyprus partner is profound. It has the infrastructure and the scientific expertise to provide valuable and critical input for the successful completion and dissemination of the project. In its relatively short history, EEWRC has been a recipient of research funding from national, European and international funding agencies, and maintains a close link of collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr Nick Polydorides has ten years of experience in applied electromagnetic inverse problems and impedance imaging algorithms for geophysical prospecting, industrial process monitoring and biomedical spectroscopy. He is the author of EIDORS 3D, the standard tool for impedance imaging research comprising electromagnetic simulators and image reconstruction routines based on inverse problem technology.

 

4. Partner

Company Katholieke Hogeschool Campus Oostende 
Zeedijk, 101 
8400 Oostende
Belgium
 
  Tel +32 59 56 90 00 
Fax +32 59 56 90 01
 
  www.khbo.be
Contact Dr. Ing. Bjoern Van De Walle 
Opleidingshoofd Bouwkunde
  Tel +32 59 56 90 00
Fax +32 59 56 90 01
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Organisation type  University 
Participant role Interested


Contribution to project

KHBO, together with 11 other Flemish University Colleges, is part of the Associatie K.U. Leuven (CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY ASSOCIATION LEUVEN). Together they make up the largest association of its kind in Flanders. This cooperation with the KATHOLIEKE UNIVERSITEIT LEUVEN, one of the oldest universities in Europe, offers the possibility of optimising our courses and guarantees the academic level of our courses. The KHBO has opted for an explicit international emphasis in each of its training courses. Mainly content-oriented cooperation with foreign institutions, but also the classic exchange programmes for students and teachers are, in that regard, the linchpin of our business. This means that students, depending on the chosen course, can opt to do a work placement abroad, lasting several months or perhaps even continue their studies there. In that context, we work towards the best possible transparency of our curricula and avail ourselves, to that end, of the European ECTS system. KHBO wants to elaborate on the relationship between soil parameters on the one hand and the measurement outcomes of the newly developed Z-meter on the other hand, as well as on the use of the Z-meter as a new measurement system to check if rainwater seepage in soils complies with rainwater drainage system regulations in Flanders.

Expertise

The Construction Unit within the Department of Industrial Sciences and Technology of the UNIVERSITY COLLEGE KHBO (associated with the Catholic University of Leuven) has expertise in (1) the domain of sustainable technological development of recycling of building materials and (2) hydraulic engineering and soil dynamics. The research activities within the domain of hydraulic engineering and soil dynamics are focused on fundamental parameter research of soils and development of laboratory and field tests. The Construction Unit participated in the SBO-project IWT 030175 in which the sensitivity to settlement of non-cohesive material was studied under high and low frequencies through cyclic triaxial tests. This research leads to participation in soil parameter research with regard to the development of the offshore windmill farm at the Thornton bank in front of the Belgian coast. Research is carried out through co-operation with the Laboratory of Soil Mechanics of Ghent University and the Department of Civil Engineering of KU Leuven. The PhD research of Bjoern Van de Walle covered the measurements of wave run-up on rubble mound breakwaters in real conditions on the Zeebrugge breakwater as well as in various European laboratories (DENMARK, GERMANY, SPAIN). Research experience is acquired through participation in European research projects: * OPTICREST -The optimisation of crest level design of sloping coastal structures through prototype monitoring and modelling. (MAST3, 1998-2001, MAS3-CT97-0116); * CLASH -Crest Level Assessment of coastal structures by full scale monitoring, neural network prediction and Hazard analysis on permissible wave overtopping (5th Framework, 2002-2004, EVK3-CT-2001-00058); * 'Research on wave run-up and overtopping on rubble mound breakwaters and seawalls constructed using heavy rock' within the 'Access to Research Infrastructures' action of the 'Human Potential Programme' (HPRI-CT-1999-00101). From 2003 until 2004 Bjoern Van de Walle has worked at the consulting company IMDC (International Marine and Dredging Consultants). He co-operated within the geotechnical part of the COMRISK-project and the Oosterweel-project. Since 2004 Bjoern Van de Walle has been lecturer at the UNIVERSITY COLLEGE KHBO. Since October 2008 he has been an affiliated researcher to the Laboratory of Hydraulics of the Civil Engineering Department of KU Leuven.

Poslední aktualizace Středa, 27 Leden 2010 18:37
 

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