Seven solar-powered flood sensors have been installed across Changi Airport’s drain network in Singapore. The sensors are equipped with radars to monitor water levels in drains that have security grilles. To monitor drainage conditions, each sensor is also equipped with a closed-circuit television (CCTV) camera. These sensors are expected to mitigate the effect of flash floods within the airfield that can negatively impact safety, aircraft performance, runway operations and air connectivity.

If the water level in a drain surpasses 60 per cent, Changi Airport Group’s (CAG) engineering and development team is alerted, and the grilles are automatically raised to discharge the collected water like a dam. One outlet drain, located south of the airport’s aerodrome, is particularly prone to overflowing due to its narrower grill bars, which catches debris easily and obstructs water flow.

Four additional sensors will be installed to the airport’s drain network by February 2022. These four areas will be covered in case of floods. CAG has also developed a drain monitoring digital map that will help workers to quickly detect drains that are reaching capacity or may be clogged.