High-tech radio network will track Lake Erie health and conditions

August 12, 2022




A new network of high-tech radio transmitters is being installed along the Ohio coastline as part of a telecommunications project advocates say will help optimize Lake Erie environmental management and accelerate water-based technology development.

The specialized wireless network is part of the grant-funded Smart Lake Erie Initiative from the nonprofit Cleveland Water Alliance (CWA), which is attempting to increase access to real-time data about environmental conditions used by regional water managers, among others.

The network, which runs on the LoRaWAN (Long Range Wide Area Network) protocol common in smart home devices, is expected to aid in the tracking of toxic algal blooms, chemical spills, urban floods and other situations that require dozens or hundreds of sensors to monitor.

“We intend to operate the network like a public utility and share its combined coverage with those who study, manage, and protect our water systems including water utilities, university researchers, and many others throughout northern Ohio,” said Bryan Stubbs, CWA director.

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