Solinas Technologies Receives Cleveland Water Alliance Open Innovation Award

Release Date: September 14, 2023 

Solinas Technologies is thrilled to announce we have been selected by the prestigious Cleveland Water Alliance 2023 Open Innovation Challenge seeking innovative solutions to detect underground lead, copper, or galvanized steel pipes.

Established in 2014, Cleveland Water Alliance is a recognized authority in nurturing innovation for the water sector. CWA’s strength lies in a robust testbed infrastructure and distinguished industry expertise, all dedicated to advancing market-driven innovation and sustainable solutions for water-related challenges. CWA’s commitment is underscored by an investment exceeding $500,000 in early-stage innovations.

The CWA’s 2023 Open Innovation Challenge aims to find solutions that can detect service lines or pipes made from lead, copper, or galvanized steel, which are buried underground between commercial and residential properties and the water main. The challenge was open to innovators with early stage concepts and does not require a complete solution or prototype.

The 2023 Open Innovation Challenge extends beyond financial incentives. It provides a global platform for innovators, granting access to grant funding and potential buyers. Participants gain exclusive access to testbeds, enabling them to validate market-driven innovations in partnership with industry leaders.

Judges participated from the following organizations:

  • Cleveland Water
  • City of Sandusky, Ohio
  • Water Works of Cincinnatti, Ohio
  • City of Akron, Ohio
  • AQUA

Solinas will use the development grant and auxillary services as part of the award to further existing work leveraging acoustic engineering principles and advanced signal processing to differentiate between buried material types. The premise of the Solinas Technologies patent pending approach is that copper and Lead service lines and galvanized material have drastically different mechanical properties and physical geometries. Their different densities, elasticity, diameter, and thickness contribute to the pipe’s vastly different natural frequencies. With our technology we can excite these pipes at their natural frequencies and successfully identify their unique acoustic signatures which allows us to easily identify lead copper galvanized or even mixed pipe systems without interruption of the water supply or access to the home.

We are very appreciative of the support offered by the Cleveland Water Alliance and look forward to working alongside with the Alliance in the waterline research facility to further our understanding of acoustic behaviors in different soil types and geographies.

The Solinas Technologies vision is that our device would provide the final material type confirmation before a shovel is put in the ground.