IOTA tangle used to improve water distribution in conflict zones

  • IOTA Tangle is used for the construction of a prototype pumping station to improve water distribution in conflict areas.
  • The company behind the prototype, com2m, will integrate IOTA technology into its Internet of Things platform.

In a publication on Medium, developer Olaf Neugebauer published details on building a smart pump prototype to improve water distribution in conflict zones. The prototype was developed by the company com2m and uses IOTA‘s Tangle technology to secure data and monitor water distribution.

Neugebauer is Manager and developer for the com2m company. Based in Dortmund, Germany, com2m is a start-up that develops Internet of Things solutions with the IoT platform. The company com2m offers its clients services that go from the beginning of a project to its application and management.

According to the publication, com2m developed the prototype of a water pump with features applicable to conflict zones. In these areas, the distribution of water is more complicated than sending it from point A to point B. In many areas it is necessary to manage data, but without the intervention of the parties involved in the conflict who may falsify or use the information to their advantage. In that sense, the use of IOTA’s Tangle technology is crucial.

IOTA finds application where Bitcoin and Ethereum fail

Unlike other blockchains such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, said Neugebauer, IOTA’s distributed ledger technology allows individual transactions to be stored on its platform. This is more convenient for monitoring work than storing transactions in blocks, as is the case with “classic blockchains”. Therefore, the development of the prototype is more efficient:

Writing and verifying data on the Tangle is fast and can be performed in a distributed way. Since its open source nature, you can deploy our own private/isolated Tangle (…) With so called Masked Authenticated Messages (MAM) IOTA provides a data streaming layer which, on paper, suites our purpose of rapid IoT data exchange well. These messages are arranged in channels. They are somewhat similar to a linked list. Starting from the root message, you can walk through the channel message by message.

For the development of the prototype of the smart water distribution pumping station, the com2m team configured a private Tangle in a Kubernetes cluster deployed in the Azure cloud. The prototype uses a series of sensors that used a Raspberry Pi as a gateway to IOTA. In addition, the prototype uses an Arduino device on its flow and pump sensor to control the power supply, a temperature and humidity sensor and a water flow sensor, as shown in the second image below. All information from the above sensors and the prototype is taken to the IOTA Tangle:

The Raspberry Pi takes the data from the Arduino and attaches them to the MAM channel and ultimately to the Tangle. To handle loss of connectivity, the outgoing data is cached in a queue and sent once connectivity is available.


Source: _COPY11@olaf.neugebauer/can-blockchain-technology-help-to-monitor-water-distribution-securely-1b5993e51c28


Source: _COPY11@olaf.neugebauer/can-blockchain-technology-help-to-monitor-water-distribution-securely-1b5993e51c28

For the programming of the prototype of the smart pumping station, the development team used a NodeRed for the Raspberry Pi. They used an IOTA NodeRed library to link the communication channels in case of power loss or loss of connectivity. The publication states that the development team was satisfied with the results, but considers that the prototype is not yet in a mass production stage. The company announced that it will integrate IOTA into its IoT platform:

Overall, we are very satisfied with the performance and capabilities of IOTA. We are eager to see how the upcoming MAM v1.1 will perform. Finally, we plan to integrate IOTA into our IoT-Platform and consulting services.

About Author


Reynaldo Marquez has closely followed the growth of Bitcoin and blockchain technology since 2016. He has since worked as a columnist on crypto coins covering advances, falls and rises in the market, bifurcations and developments. He believes that crypto coins and blockchain technology will have a great positive impact on people's lives.

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