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TAMIU Embraces Smart Technology for Water Savings; Provides Study-Service Opportunity in El Salvador Posted: 3/29/17

TAMIU Embraces Smart Technology for Water Savings; Provides Study-Service Opportunity in El Salvador

 

TAMIU Landscape
TAMIU's beautiful campus will benefit from a new 'Smart' irrigation system.  

Today, technology is wired into virtually all aspects of our lives and can guide crucial differences in the quality of our lives.

At Texas A&M International University (TAMIU), campus leaders wanted technology to address a chronic problem: record water usage for the 300-acre campus. The challenge was to maintain the campus’ grounds, a challenge in the often-hostile South Texas climate, while trying to reduce water costs and inconsistencies.

At a presentation on campus Wednesday, Casey Bambico, national account operations director for Weathermatic, shared an update with TAMIU students and staff on the system and a study-service opportunity.

 Trevor Liddle, TAMIU associate vice president for administration, talked about the importance of the project.

“We found ourselves in an ongoing battle:  trying to maintain the campus in high-heat situations, but wanting to do so in an efficient, water-aware way that would reduce expenses, but not endanger our campus’ special landscape, so much a part of our campus’ distinct experience,” said Liddle.

TAMIU’s campus maintenance partner, SSC Services for Education, has partnered with Weathermatic, a world leader in water conserving innovation through smart irrigation solutions, for help.  

Through Weathermatic, TAMIU identified a “smart” system and savings program used on select A&M System campuses that is data-driven.  Its installation elevates the campus to a select number of Texas’ campuses where data drives solutions resulting in savings, while preserving the campus landscape.

“For example, this SmartLink System can detect optimal irrigation periods based on current humidity and heat index and can initiate irrigation and length of irrigation at the best time for maximum absorption and little waste,” Liddle explained.

“We’ve installed new irrigation system heads and campus sensors, all of which can be controlled from a smartphone or tablet, allowing us to conveniently monitor and adjust our water plan as needed, based on real-time data pushed to us 24/7,” he added.

 “We expect to realize savings that will reduce our former costs by 11-15%.  Visitor and campus residents will no longer see odd water distributions and faulty irrigation, and we’ve already seen measurable differences.

“Most importantly, we’ll be able to sustain our campus landscape and grounds.  It is the primary backdrop for our campus experience and teaching, and is also a popular destination for visitors here.   We are the largest intact green space available to the public, and through biking and walking trails and on-campus activities, have become a destination for both residents and visitors,” Liddle said.

The TAMIU solution is part of a larger Texas A&M University System effort at many A&M regional campuses, and also provides an innovative study-service option for TAMIU students.

“Weathermatic has a long-standing commitment to empowering needy communities world wide with all-important clean water and supports the non-profit organization Living Water International.  Living Water International has developed “Save Water, Give Life” to provide study-service opportunities for students to go to a country, install a clean water system and lead important hygiene classes for residents.  This summer, two TAMIU students will travel to El Salvador in August to transform a community by providing clean water,” Liddle said.

TAMIU students were excited to hear about the opportunity to participate in the study-service opportunity, made possible by SSC Services for Education.

Deadline for students to apply for the El Salvador Study-Service opportunity is April 30. Applications are located here http://sscfacilities.wixsite.com/weathermatic/application TAMIU student inquiries can be directed to Martha Larumbe at 956.326.2752.

A video about the Study-Service opportunity is here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UabQKdVbvGk

A student video about last year’s program to Nicaragua is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfOowQECcos

More information on Weathermatic is here: http://www.weathermatic.com

For more information about the TAMIU campus solution, contact TAMIU’s Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at 956.326.2180, email prmis@tamiu.edu, click on tamiu.edu or visit offices located in the Sue and Radcliffe Killam Library, room 268.

Irrigation discussion

Casey Bambico of Weathermatics discusses the University's water saving system and study-service opportunities for TAMIU students in El Salvador.