Innovative and economical photonics sensor interrogation (Wastewater pipeline sensing system)

1 Oct 2021 - 30 Sep 2022
Macquarie University
$426,314.00 (Cash + In kind)
Asset Management

Challenge and proposed solution

Protecting and managing urban wastewater networks is not an easy task.

Sewer pipes, due to being exposed to harsh conditions, are prone to concrete attacks which lead to rapid deterioration and often result in premature pipe failure, causing financial, public health and environmental burden.

Sensors could be used to detect corrosion. Yet, standalone interrogators – technology that converts sensor readings into actionable data – that could be deployed at multiple sites are not readily available nor are they cost effective. This project takes an innovative approach to develop an alternative solution to the expensive laser-based optical interrogators.

In collaboration with Sydney Water and Melbourne Water, Macquarie University has developed and tested novel photonics-based sensors that monitor concrete corrosion and associated environmental conditions such as humidity in gravity sewers.


  • Melbourne Water,
  • Sydney Water Corporation