The 2011 ISA Water & Wastewater and Automatic Controls Symposium in St. Louis was a great experience. It was refreshing to attend a conference where everyone had the same automation and controls perspective, and everyone spoke the same “language.”
As my first experience presenting at a conference it was great to share my work experience and lessons learned with others. Large or small systems whether near or across the continent, we all have similar stories to share and solutions that have wider application than many realize. This became abundantly clear to me during the presentations.
We all like to think of our own water systems as unique and special. While that is true in many respects, in terms of the challenges we face as water/wastewater automation professionals, we have a lot more in common than we have differences, no matter where we are from.
I would like to encourage anyone who has the chance to attend the next symposium – whether as an attendee or a presenter – and get a fresh perspective on the issues you face every day. Maybe even share your experience with others. You’ll be glad you did.
About the Author: Matt Phillips is the Water Security Coordinator (SCADA) for the City of Guelph’s Water Services Department, located in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. He co-presented the paper “Modernization of a Municipal Waterworks using SCADA Standardization: Past, Present and Planning for the Future” at the 2011 WWAC Symposium.