New Sonar technology to detect clogged pipelines

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The Davenport Public Works Department is using new technology to detect blockages in the sewer lines.

It’s called the Sewer Line Rapid Assessment Tool, and it’s a portable device that sends and receives acoustic signals down the pipe.

City officials say the device is a money-saving tool, and it uses the power of sound to find problem areas in sewer lines.

The Sewer Line Rapid Assessment Tool, or SL-RAT for short. 

Public works officials say there are a couple areas that have had sewer backups in the past, and they have been flushing all the pipes in that area. 

“We really don’t need to be flushing that line right now, but because it is in that areas we have been flushing it.” 
 
That’s where the SL-RAT comes in.
 
“We will know what lines we have to do more work with what lines and what lines can be left alone, and what lines can be left to a later date,” said Elmer Shannon, Davenport Public Works equipment director.
 
There is a series of strong acoustic tones that travels through the sewer pipes and the device will rate each line on a scale from 0 to 10. If there is something blocking the pipes the device would give it a 0. If it’s in the clear, the pipe gets the score of 10.
Before using the SL-RAT crews would use this camera and run it through the length of each pipe. 
“The setup is a lot easier. The equipment is a lot lighter, a little more sophisticated than what we have been using. It does help get the job done more efficiently,” said Shannon.
The device will be used in the Keota Ave. neighborhood, and expand throughout the city in the near future. 
 

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