Eng. Fida’a Jibril and Farouq Alomari
Royal Scientific Society / Amman
Scarcity of water in Jordan behaves us to spare no effort in making every drop count. Pollution is recognized to be a major cause of rendering increasing amounts of water resources unfit for various uses. Jordan is exerting tremendous efforts to protect its meager freshwater resources. This has been performed through conventional water quality monitoring programs executed by various testing laboratories.
EMARCU was established by the Higher Council for Science and Technology (HCST) and the Royal Scientific Society (RSS) through a grant to establish a state-of-the-art real-time monitoring system for water (RTMS) provided by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), to ensure sustainable and efficient management and implementation of the National Project for Real-Time Water Quality Monitoring.
EMARCU’s mission is to collate and make available water quality data from a real-time monitoring system (RTMS) and from national water-testing laboratories. Its ultimate objective is public health and environmental protection and sustainability.
The long-term goals of EMARCU are:
- To collect and make available water quality data on the major surface water resources in Jordan.
- To provide a data collection platform for national water quality.
- To help improve decision making in the water and environment sectors through real-time data provision and system modeling.
- To promote data sharing among the national organizations that monitor water quality and conduct research.
Thirteen fully-automated monitoring stations are located on the Jordan, Yarmouk, and Zarqa Rivers, King Abdullah Canal, and at the inlet and outlet of King Talal Reservoir.
The Monitoring Stations:
Each of the thirteen monitoring stations is comprised of an air-conditioned metal container housing three sets of physiochemical water analysis equipment and an embedded personal computer. The three measuring sets are:
- Temperature, pH, EC & Turbidity
- T-N & T-P.
A continuous sampling pump withdraws water from the water body into a conditioning tank inside the container. Samples for analysis are automatically drawn and excess water is drained back into the water body.
Results of analysis are initially stored in the embedded computer and then transmitted through GPRS modem to EMARCU in Amman. Received data are automatically stored in a database in the main server located at EMARCU. Status and alarm signals are also transmitted to draw attention to system malfunction and/or water quality parameters exceeding regulatory standards.
The RTMS is capable of producing data on an hourly basis. The database is designed to handle transmitted data from the thirteen stations and also data provided by national testing laboratories through their regular water-quality monitoring programs. It thus allows data storage, facilitates retrieval and interpretation.
Design of the system was done by Japanese consultants, while the system’s software, civil and electromechanical works were executed by local Jordanian companies.
• Real-time: Allows real-time decision making.
• Accurate and impartial: human interference is curtailed.
• Long-term: data safekeeping, continuity and ease of use.
• Forms a basis for other environmental applications.
• A good demonstration of utilizing IT techniques in serving environmental protection.
Potential System Users:
• Decision makers.
- For long-term planning schemes.
- In emergency cases.
- As early warning system.
- For security concerns.
• Water utility managers.
• Engineering consultants.
• Academics and researchers.
• The public at large.