Water for a city rising from the desert

2017-11-30 - ABB’s innovative digital control and monitoring technologies supporting sustainable water management for Egypt’s new capital city

In a land of mostly desert, the Nile River has nurtured and sustained Egyptian civilization and Sudanese Kingdoms since ancient times. Nearly all the historical sites and temples of Ancient Egypt are found along the river’s lush riverbanks. Five thousand years later, the Nile river is integral the development of the newest infrastructure project in modern Egypt -- the New Cairo city, one of the cities built around Cairo to alleviate the congestion of the capital city. Precious water is being pumped from the Nile to the site of the new urban area for 37 km right in the midst of the arid land.

The new city, established in 2000, covers 500 square kilometers and could host up to 5 million inhabitants. Officials indicate that its development is a response to the crowding and pollution of Cairo, whose population is projected to hit 40 million by 2050.


To help build an efficient water distribution network in Egypt’s newest city, ABB has provided a state-of-the-art ABB AbilityTM Distributed Control System (DCS), instrumentation and monitoring solution to the country’s utility Construction Authority for Potable Water and Wastewater (CAPW). The technology for this raw water transfer project will supply 500,000 cubic meters of water per day to serve 2.5 million people. The completed project is expected to supply two million cubic meters per day and serve 10 million people.

The capital city’s exploding growth is part of a global urbanization trend, the United Nations estimates that 60 percent of the world’s population will live in towns or cities by 2030. Improvements in urban infrastructure are an important factor in avoiding some of the negative effects of urbanization, such as greater poverty and inadequate housing.

“Sustainable water management focusing on water quality and reliable supply are crucial in Africa as in all growing countries, where water scarcity heavily impacts on development,” underlines Kevin Kosisko, Managing Director of the Power Generation & Water business, part of ABB’s Industrial Automation division. “ABB’s automation technology paired with deep expertise in the field has already helped several African states to make the most out of their water projects, with the highest levels of efficiency and availability”.

Expertise within the water sector

The technology delivered includes field instrumentation and a water leakage detection package. The award winning leakage detection system leverages big data to transform the way water networks are operated and managed by using innovative algorithms to read the raw data generated by the network’s utility. What emerges is a real-time picture of how the network is functioning. The resulting insights help to make better-informed decisions across the entire network, from analysts checking for leaks, bursts and pressure problems to management teams identifying challenges and maximizing resources.

Digitalization is behind many of the benefits of ABB’s current control technology, which draws on a rich heritage of innovation and power generation and water leadership. Its digital control systems add value for customers by carefully collecting, analyzing and providing actionable insights on data in their systems.

ABB is a leading provider of integrated power and automation solutions with unparalleled experience in partnering with the energy and water industries, bringing them improved operations and sustainable progress. We deliver integrated and secure digital systems, services and solutions to automate and optimize the performance of conventional and renewable power plants and water facilities.

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