Civil engineering company, SE3, continues expansive sewer testing in Kansas City using Uinta Mapping and Data Collection Software

SE3, a civil engineering firm, in Kansas City, MO recently began using Juniper Systems’ Uinta Mapping and Data Collection Software while undertaking a massive sewer testing project with the city.

Andrew Clarke, Field Operations Coordinator at SE3, shared some details about the company’s current Kansas City project and the hardware and software solutions being used by the firm.

The current municipal contract with Kansas City has SE3 testing miles of sewer lines all across the city. This testing is part of Kansas City’s ongoing Smart Sewer System project. The current phase of the project has crews from SE3 pumping smoke into sewer lines searching for leaks and other potential problems with the current system, this also helps discover potential issues with residential and commercial properties connected to the system. The project includes testing how much rainwater is entering the sewer system. The crews at SE3 use Uinta Mapping and Data Collection Software along with Mesa Rugged Tablets and Geode Sub-meter GPS Receivers from Juniper Systems to map and mark locations they find as being defective and that need repair.

Crews from SE3 use the Mesa Rugged Tablet and Uinta to collect data sewer data in Kansas city, MO.

Accuracy meets durability

Before using Juniper Systems’ products, some crews were using iPads™ with internal GPS for data collection. They were also using expensive GIS software. It became evident that the internal GPS of the iPad was not sufficient for proper data collection and the software was very expensive.

In 2017, after a lot of research into potential devices to roll out to crews, SE3 decided on the Mesa Rugged Tablet and Geode receiver for their data collection needs.

“We purchased the Mesas and Geodes after doing a ton of research,” Clarke said. “Juniper seemed like the most reasonable company to go through. Post-purchase support was a big factor.”

The Mesa and Geode provided a rugged hardware solution that offered the accurate mapping and point capturing data that was needed when making reports for stakeholders. One piece of having a total solution still eluded SE3 as they continued to use expensive data collection software.  

A SE3 employee uses the Mesa Rugged Tablet to record test information.

A mapping and data collection software to match

In 2020, SE3 found Uinta shortly after the launch of the product. They were excited to see that Juniper had developed software that made data collection more organized when capturing and exporting coordinates and that worked so seamlessly with Juniper’s hardware.

For SE3, reporting the data it collects is a big part of the firm’s relationship with its clients. Uinta has made that reporting easier and mostly all in one place, unlike the other software that they previously used that required moving data from one system to another.  

“Uinta is exactly what we needed to provide the results our client demands,” Clarke said. “What has stuck out about it is the user-friendliness, Geode compatibility, and being able to use the software without being connected to the internet.”

Efficient mapping and forms with or without an internet connection

Uinta allows users to download area maps while in the office and not be worried about connectivity issues in the field. The GPS coordinates of the Geode then place the accurate points on the downloaded maps. This saves time in the field and saves money by not having multiple devices with data plans.

The current sewer project with Kansas City incorporates a lot of data collection as well as mapping points along roadways and city streets that need to be addressed. Part of the data that SE3 is asked to provide in their reports are photos of defects or damaged areas that need repair. These photos also need to be marked with coordinates. Previously, SE3 had to manually match photos taken with notes taken in the field.

Uinta allows for a point to be mapped as a record and a photo taken all within the application. This function saves time for SE3 crews and makes reporting these defects easier. One feature that also stuck out to SE3 crew members is that even when a mapped record is updated the original photo taken with that record remains and doesn’t need to be retaken.

SE3 crews perform sewer testing with smoke in Kansas City, MO.

Customized data collection software at an affordable price

The initial rollout of Uinta was a smooth transition for the SE3 team. The ability to make customized templates for specific jobs has allowed record types to be easily shared so that workers don’t have to recreate the same templates and record types over and over again.

Templates within Uinta are either set up by the organization or can be set up with the help of Juniper Systems’ customer success team. Templates allow for the base functions of the Uinta software to be customized to include various record types for any given job. For example, different types of assets that are being mapped can be added to a template as a record type. Once a user goes to map that specific asset they can simply select that record type and map the asset. Uinta allows for various icons to be used to mark certain assets. These help with reporting, maintenance, and keeping maps clean and easy to read.

“Our roll-out was smooth and easy,” Clarke said. “It was also so easy to call (Juniper) and find a solution to any question that we had. The customer support is unlike what you get with other products.”

Clarke continues to be relieved that many of the tools previously used at ES3 are gone and have been replaced with tools that are built for the rugged nature of the jobs they are doing and also fit better in the budget. Rugged hardware has replaced consumer-grade equipment and Uinta offers a better, all-in-one software solution at a much lower price than previous software programs.

“The price is amazing,” Clarke said. “I fell into the trap of expensive tools and software. With Uinta, you can get top quality data without paying top dollar. Many have fallen into that trap in this industry.”

To learn more about Uinta and how its customizable record types and professional mapping capabilities can be implemented into your workflow contact us here.

SE3 crews continue sewer smoke testing using Mesa Rugged Tablets and Uinta mapping software.

About SE3:

Based out of Kansas City, MO, SE3 continues to grow in reputation and size. Founded in 2004, SE3 now operates eight offices across five states. SE3 offers full-service transportation and municipal engineering, including planning, design, and construction management. SE3 is a certified DBE/MBE company. Visit them here.

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