UK River Levels Measured by GE Pressure Sensors

High performance level pressure sensors from the sensing business of GE Measurement & Control Solutions are helping the Environment Agency to forecast floods in England and Wales and to prepare for the possibility of flooding. The sensors monitor river levels throughout the river network of England and Wales and transmit changes in river levels for data gathering systems.

Flood warning data involves many parameters, such as meteorological reports, dew point measurements, wind speeds and humidity. Rainfall and groundwater levels are vital components of any prediction mix. However, flooding is eventually caused when rivers cannot handle the amount of water flowing through them and burst their banks. The results are seen in towns and flood plains, where, based on experience, a number of measures to mitigate the flooding effects can be initiated. An important tool in deciding when and where to institute such measures is provided by flood forecasts, which are assessed for many rivers in England and Wales.

An essential component is the monitoring of water levels at key points. This is achieved through the use of a variety of sensor types. At many sites pressure sensors are immersed in the water flow and the pressure readings indicate the river level at that point. These readings are then transmitted to a control centre, where data from other relevant rivers is analysed and collated. By using sophisticated computer programs it is possible to predict the river levels in towns and flood plains affected by the rivers being monitored so that mitigating action can be taken before flooding occurs.

GE Measurement & Control’s Sensing business has been one of several suppliers of a variety of level sensors to the Environment Agency for many years. Currently it supplies the PTX1830 sensor, which offers high technology, micromachined silicon element design and advanced signal conditioning and packaging techniques to provide a long-term solution for reliable, accurate and economical operation.

Measurement & Control Solutions is part of GE Energy Services. For further information, visit

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