About the project
Utilities Manager is a web application which monitors the consumption of water, gas, renewables and electricity. The web application functions as an automated meter reading (AMR) system that calculates the consumption of utilities.
Key functions of Utilities Manager include:
- Presenting interactive graphs and charts of utilities' consumption (quantity and cost)
- Informing the clients and administrators about unusual events, e.g. sudden drops or increases of consumption
- Forecasting estimation utility costs
There are many reasons why Utilities Manager is an exceptional and challenging project. Because within the scope of its development we are on the border of hardware (meters and loggers, namely devices synchronised with the first ones and transferring information on consumption to the licensed supplier) and software. Due to this the development of this product is a very complicated task with many challenges which we have to face.
System of utilities monitoring
During the development works for Single Page Application (SAP), we created an alarms system to notify all users about unusual utility consumption data. Utilities Manager web app both monitors and notifies the amounts of consumed gas, water and electricity. Due to this mechanism everyone who uses the application and manages, for example, a chain of buildings, perfectly knows where and when any excessive drop or increase of utility consumption happens.
Measuring data in real time
eEngine Software House supports the owners of Utilities Manager by developing new methods of collecting data as new problems are encountered or hardware is introduced to the market. The only certainty in the Automated Meter Reading (AMR) industry is that change is constant as hardware manufacturers continuously compete to provide better solutions at lower cost.
In 2016 Utilities Manager Limited, the owners of the software, were asked to provide real-time water data monitoring for a very large sports venue, with the added complication of cellphone network capacity being unavailable. Appropriate local exclusively licensed radio frequency data loggering hardware was identified by Utilities Manager and then we had to develop the scripts to collect real-time data from the hardware using an API. The system was developed and solution provided to ensure the safety of the event and spectators. In previous years the venue employed staff to sit and watch the water meters turning.
Geolocation of devices
We enriched the application also with the possibility to locate the specific meters on the map, on the basis of metadata within pictures placed in the system by the users. We realised this on the basis that the picture is taken with a cellphone with GPS, the application automatically extracts the location data of the data logger attached to the utility meter from the graphic file and then displays the location site on a map.
Responsive client panel
Within the scope of our care of the web application, in addition to developing new functionalities and taking care for scalability of the tool itself, there is also a part of the service dedicated to the clients of Utilities Manager. As a result, some time ago this piece of software was equipped with a fully responsive layout, allowing for comfortable access to the information with the use of a smartphone or tablet.
Presently, we are preparing the application for international markets. As a result, we are upgrading the system so that it becomes a more universal tool than only the one dedicated for the British market. Numeric and date formats for all charts and language packs for additional text can be added to Utilities Manager web application. Additional international markets will bring new hardware that will require integration into Utilities Manager.