On this continuously updated page, BWI provides a Q&A of frequently asked questions to aid your research before discussing virtual station needs with our sales engineers. If you can’t find your answer, please contact us via the BWI form below, and we’ll respond soon.
Our 3-word pitch is: ‘BWI digitizes basins‘.
As a provider of virtual stations anywhere on water bodies, BWI brings together data, hydraulic models, and machine learning to:
– deepen scientific knowledge in hydrology,
– to help businesses adapt to an era of climate change induced water stress,
– and to better predict water-related hazards such as floods, droughts and water pollution.
At BWI, a virtual station refers to a digitized measurement point located on a water body.
BWI gives their customers the capacity to create and monitor as many virtual stations as necessary without having to physically deploy ground stations, as part of their basin digitization projects.
Virtual stations may be deployed anywhere on the hydrographic networks covered by BWI.
Today, virtual stations have the ability to monitor and predict river discharge.
Tomorrow, BWI will also predict levels, volumes and quality of continental freshwater.
Sure! BWI uses the data sources described on this sketch:
As far as data sources from space sensors are concerned, BWI uses multiple satellites with onboard sensors ranging from radars, altimeters, radiometers, and imagers. This variety of sensors allows BWI to retrieve earth observation parameters on terrain characterization, soil moisture, land use, precipitation estimation, and snow cover up to surface water quantity and surface water quality parameters.
BWI processes data as stated in the following flow chart.
A set of different models are currently combined at BWI: rainfall-runoff models for hydrological purposes, physical models to integrate meteorological parameters and machine learning algorithms to refine the results of previous models against the acceleration of climate change.
BWI stands for Blue Water Intelligence. Should be read ‘Blue; waterintelligence’ with waterintelligence as a tagline to describe what we do.
We commonly refer to the company as either BWI or as just ‘Blue’, and we like to call our talents ‘Bluers’.
In the way BWI conducts its business, it has become apparent that the company is guided by a set of 4 core values shared by all Bluers:
– Meaning, as all talents who have decided to join BWI are here to make an impact on society, that is to say to work to offer solutions to a number of pressing problems. To name just a few of these pressing problems:
– understand the effects of climate change on the water cycle and contribute to science by sharing findings with the hydrological research community,
– help businesses and authorities adapt to climate change induced water stress,
– help the development of hydropower and inland waterway transportation to accelerate the transition to a low carbon society,
– evaluate inland water reserves,
– monitor surface water quality,
– in case of a water-related hazard, warn populations early to contribute to saving human lives.
– Innovation and creativity in everything we do at BWI, particularly by promoting a culture in which each and everyone may be challenged, and is encouraged to challenge other people’s ideas. We at BWI pledge to take time to look at problems from radically different vantage points and come up with non-conventional solutions that will generally favor results and speed to trigger movement and change.
– Global mindset, since the water crisis is everywhere and the stakes are universal. Which means our team has to reflect this global mindset: it is only by bringing together skills, cultures, experiences that will combine into something uniquely different, that BWI will be capable of coming up with solutions that will be applicable worldwide. This is the reason we at BWI will always favor diversity and inclusiveness over conservatism and business as usual.
– Excellence, as BWI wishes to work with the best talents, for the most demanding clients, for the most recognized suppliers and with the most prestigious stakeholders in general. So we at BWI not only want to continuously raise our own standards, but we also want to set the bar even higher so BWI grows together with their community.
Partially. Some of our basin digitization services are already operational and deployed at customers, but not all of them.
For example, BWI virtual stations have been delivering river discharge predictions in some countries – but not yet globally.
BWI is working on adding the new capabilities to virtual stations, namely: water levels of rivers and lakes, water volumes of water bodies, and water quality monitoring and forecasting.
BWI also enters new geographies on a case-by-case basis, so feel free to get in touch to give us a heads up and help us prioritize.
BWI basin digitization services are hosted in the European Union. BWI has chosen a French company named Scaleway as the provider of BWI’s server infrastructure.
Scaleway operates datacenters in Paris, France, but also in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and in Warsaw, Poland. BWI teams manage servers themselves.
Two of the major reasons BWI has chosen Scaleway is it’s easy to get support from Scaleway, and also Scaleway’s datacenters run on renewable energy exclusively, mainly coming from hydropower.
So at BWI, we like this circular way to reinforce the ecosystem.
No. We’re currently starting to work on raising funds for an MVP of 2 nano-satellites (550km inter-tracks, 48-hours revisit rate) aimed at validating all technical assumptions, and at starting to commercialize the data to the market.
This 2-strong MVP will be perfect ground base to raise further capital to launch a space infrastructure of 10 nano-satellites.
If you need water levels data ASAP, then there is an easy way for you to help us secure funding faster: please provide us with a commercially non-binding letter of interest, that would be of much help to showcase market interest to our investors.
Yes, BWI is always looking for the best talents to join the Blue team.
If you feel you’re the right fit, feel free to drop us a line.
We’ll consider your profile and answer you shortly.
Although most Bluers work from one of our two offices, Toulouse and Paris, as human interactions are key to innovating, some Bluers have decided to work remotely.
So yes, BWI does hire remote workers. BWI thinks remote setups work best with software engineers and field sales representatives.
The number one reason talents are joining BWI is our mission. BWI is about helping public authorities and companies adapt to the consequences of climate change on the availability of water as the most vital resource on Earth.
BWI also makes sure to offer competitive packages, a flexible and friendly and yet focused and ambitious work atmosphere, and sound work-life balance routines.
BWI’s run-of-river hydropower streamflow forecasting service is exclusively designed for run-of-river HPP operators, both small hydro and larger hydro – provided these remain run-of-river. This is why account creation isn’t publicly open, and the BWI team qualifies account creation requests.
HPPs that included dams as well as hydropower aggregators may also get in touch, but we’ll deliver to each of these segments another service (different features, different pricing) – still under development, but we’re most happy to recruit alpha users at this stage.
Hemeria and BWI are two private companies incorporated in Toulouse, France, European Union.
Hemeria, a 400-strong smallsat platforms manufacturer born in 2019, and BWI, share the same shareholder in the name of Hemeria Invest, a private holding company that is currently controlled by several European investors.
Hemeria provides technical support (in space systems, communication, finance and accounting, HR, procurement,…) and talents (in all the above mentioned expertises) to BWI on a daily basis, and we share the same office buildings in Toulouse.
More broadly speaking, BWI also shares the same drive for creativity, innovation and excellence.
BWI teams are definitely proud to count Hemeria Invest as a reference shareholder and Hemeria as a prime cousin.
Last but not least, Hemeria Invest isn’t bound to remain the sole shareholder of BWI and is open to new investors getting in touch with BWI.
No. BWI is a software vendor and a data provider, but not a hardware designer or manufacturer.
BWI has selected a number of in-situ sensor manufacturers from whom we purchase equipments as part of our internal validation network of instruments.
So, again, the answer is no, BWI doesn’t manufacture hardware but writes beautiful pieces of software rather.
No. We’re a client, and neither a competitor nor a supplier, for the physical ground measurement industry.
BWI has been deploying its own in-situ infrastructure of ground measurement stations, as an R&D investment to calibrate its algorithmic chains and validate near real-time monitoring data and forecasts.
BWI is always looking to meet ground sensing manufacturers, distributors, installers and maintainers for the sake of making use of the best equipments and service providers everywhere around the world.
However, BWI does NOT deploy physical ground measurement stations for its clients, but rather sells subscriptions to virtual stations (meaning there’s no subsequent physical instrument).
BWI will always be most happy to recommend physical monitoring equipment manufacturers and service providers to clients who are making the request.
Please find how virtual stations compare to physical in-situ monitoring stations in the table below:
No. BWI’s focus is in monitoring the quantitative and qualitative parameters related to inland surface water. Subterranean waters and surface waters are obviously linked in many ways, but BWI isn’t looking at the former.
Whilst near real-time and 1-day hydrological forecasts computed by BWI can be considered accurate, 10-day hydrological forecasts are not yet satisfactory. BWI is working hard on bettering long continental freshwater forecasts, as well as on providing clients with a continuously updated BWI data accuracy index, so the precision of the hydrological algorithm becomes transparent.
No, BWI isn’t a consultancy and doesn’t perform consulting engagements as the company isn’t staffed and organized to do so.
When a consulting mission is needed, BWI prefers to partner with consultants, or to recommend consultancies to clients.
This way, Bluers remain focused on providing subscription-based basin digitization services and BWI keeps its customers happy by sending them the best experts.
Yes, as BWI hydrological predictions are designed to operate globally. If you need surface water monitoring and forecasting for a specific region not yet covered by BWI, drop us a line so we may work on a route to expand service coverage to your area of interest. BWI virtual stations may be deployed anywhere on Earth, including in ungauged basins.