Demand-Integrated Network Control Solution

By combining the Operations Automation and Network Control solutions, the control of the entire network of canals is improved further so that the achievable delivery capacity is optimized and the delivery of water to farmers can be made almost on-demand.


Flexibility and responsiveness to farmers’ needs are the hallmarks of an irrigation district that is focussed on customers. Imagine being able to deliver water within an hour or two of a farmers request. Imagine being able to deliver day or night at any hour without increasing your costs. Imagine being able to deliver simultaneously to more farmers than is currently possible. Imagine being able to deliver high and consistent flows to farmers while at the same time eliminating spills at the ends of the canals.

With the Demand-Integrated Network Control solution, farmers enter and manage their water delivery requests through a website called Customer Connect. As soon as a request is entered, the software immediately checks the farmer’s usage and any other rules and regulations necessary, and then calculates whether the canal network can deliver the water. The request is then confirmed to the farmer or adjacent time slots offered for immediate selection. At the same time, demand peaks and troughs are smoothed and orders linked to better utilize the canal’s capacity and to deliver to more farmers simultaneously.

At the delivery time, the farmer’s automated turnout opens and all of the check gates along the length and breadth of the canal system coordinate to supply just the amount of water needed by the farmer at the requested flow rate.

With this level of flexibility and responsiveness, farmers are back in the driving seat. Confident of water delivery, they can increase productivity.

Combining the automated coordination of FlumeGates along the length of the canal in the Network Control solution with the demand smoothing of the Operations Automation solution ensures that the canal capacity cannot be exceeded even in times of high water need.

The result is that the whole canal system behaves with nearly the same responsiveness and efficiency as a pipe but without the high cost of piped networks.

Features and Benefits

Water delivered nearly on-demand
Instead of rigid irrigation schedules like rotations, water can be delivered almost immediately it is requested at any point in the canal system. This is because the full demand of all farmers and the capacity of all canals in the system is known and all control gates and turnouts are fully automated.
More water
By eliminating the spills that are common in canal operation, more water remains available in the river or in storage for irrigation at another time. And farmer turnouts automatically close when the exact amount of water has been delivered, eliminating over-watering and runoff.
Fairer, better service
Farmers are back in control, able to reliably get the water they need, when they need it and with far less effort. All farmers receive the same quality of service: high, consistent flows on request, regardless of whether they are towards the beginning or end of the canal system.
Higher productivity
When water is available when the crop needs it, productivity improves. And with a better service, farmers can be more confident that higher investments in crops will be rewarded. Additionally where gravity irrigation is used on-farm, high, consistent flows to farms means quicker surface irrigations, less nutrient leaching through infiltration and less plant shutdown from waterlogging. The net result is higher crop productivity using less water.
Improve safety
With complete automation, dangerous sites or sites that are difficult to reach are no longer a problem, improving the safety of your staff.
Better environmental outcomes
By eliminating runoff, denutrification, polluted drain water and salinification are all reduced reducing costs and helping the environment.
Reduced risk
The risk of overtopping is reduced because water demand, actual use, and automatic control are fully integrated. Risk to canal damage or damage caused by flooding is reduced.


The Demand-Integrated Network Control solution is made up of modular TCC® technology:


Rubicon’s FlumeGates are combination overshot flow measurement and control gates used in line to regulate the canal system. FlumeGates provide accurate flow measurement, precise motor control, power supply and radio telecommunications, fully integrated in a single device.

Radio Network

Rubicon’s engineers will design and install a communication system that will enable the inter-communication between FlumeGates along the length of the canal and the remote monitoring of all field equipment from the control center.


NeuroFlo Network Control is the software that determines the
response of each FlumeGate, and coordinates the propagation of flow information up (or down) the canal.


SCADAConnect is Rubicon’s SCADA software designed specifically for irrigation. It provides the ability to monitor and manage all field devices, with comprehensive alarm management and the ability to do sophisticated trend analysis.

Network Visualisation

The Network Visualization software function pack provides a visual, schematic representation of the irrigation network and a dynamic summary analysis of the operating behavior. It contains a complete definition of all canal sections, all control gates and meters, their capacities and the connections between them.


Rubicon’s SlipMeters are combination undershot flow measurement and control gates designed for use at farm entry points or smaller canal offtakes. SlipMeters use Sonaray® measurement technology, which was developed by Rubicon specifically for measuring flows in open canals with acoustic transducers. SlipMeters receive instructions from SCADAConnect to open and close automatically at pre-determined times.

Customer Connect

The dedicated web portal provides the ability to communicate directly with farmers, even 24 hours a day. Farmers can manage their water delivery requests and receive immediate response, putting them back in control of irrigation. They can also manage water usage and receive messages or information bulletins by text, fax or email according to their preference.

Orders, Rotations & Scheduling

This software function pack automates the collection and management of water delivery requests. Farmers can place, delete or modify requests 24 hours a day.

Rights & Compliance

This function pack checks water delivery requests are within farmers’ rights and checks compliance with any government or other stakeholder requirements.

Tariffs, Rates & Invoicing

Whatever your tariff structure, this function pack can reflect it, whether made up of water usage or farm size, combinations of fixed or variable costs, or one-time or regular charges. Then have the data sent to your current accounting package.

Automatic Delivery

The Automatic Delivery function pack automates the scheduling of water deliveries, and then sends a message (via SCADAConnect) to pre-program SlipMeters to automatically open and close the gate at the planned time.