Updated on March 18, 2024


Created on August 27, 2015

MoMo Remote Sensor

Low-power and flexible mobile infrastructure sensing device with an integrated GSM cellular connection

Developed By
  1. WellDone
Tested By
  • WellDone
Content Partners


Product Description

MoMo (mobile monitor) is a low-power and flexible mobile infrastructure sensing device with an integrated GSM cellular connection.

MoMo is a modular remote data collection platform which can be used to retrieve sensor data and aggregate it in a central location. This data can then be used to visualize large infrastructure systems, identify weak points and individual failures, analyze trends, and inform plans for future development. It can also trigger automatic notifications to the right people should something go wrong.

Watch a presentation video of MoMo.

Target SDGs

SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation

Market Suggested Retail Price


Target Users (Target Impact Group)

Community, Public Sector Agencies, NGOs

Distributors / Implementing Organizations

MoMo is currently being piloted by WellDone.org. It partnered with WaterAid Tanzania.

Competitive Landscape

Direct competitors include SWEETSense Technologies and AFD-1 Water Flow Sensor.

Manufacturing/Building Method

The MoMo is currently manufactured in low-volumes as part of the piloting process. Manufacturing methods include 3D printing of MoMo enclosures that integrate with water pumps. Off-the-shelf components are used such as the PolyCase's NEMA 4x-rated waterproof enclosure WP-21F. The MoMo operating system is open-source and all documentation is available for users.

Intellectural Property Type


User Provision Model

The MoMo is still in the piloting stage. However, users may contact the design team or sign up for updates on the release. Alternatively, users may build their own version of the MoMo with the provided guidance.

Distributions to Date Status


Design Specifications

  • Technical Specifications:
    • - Microchip PIC® ultra-low-power microprocessors (16-bit PIC24 and 8-bit PIC16 Enhanced Mid-Range family)
    • - Device power consumption during sleep is less than the Li-ion battery self-discharge rate
    • - Inter-module communication using the MIB RPC protocol over I2C (6-pin connectors or RJ12)
    • - Multisensor, includes 1 pulse counter, 3 voltage sensors, 1 current sensor, 1 pressure sensor (requires an additional pressure transducer IC component), 1 serial comm line
    • - See the MoMo documentation and GitHub repository for details
  • The first MoMo sensor board has hardware support for a large number of different logical sensors, namely: Pulse Counting, 3 voltages, 1 current, pressure readings, and UART serial communication.
  • MoMo was built to work with the standard GSM module. The GSM communication module is quad-band (850/900/1800/1900MHz), requires a microSIM card, supports both GPRS and SMS data transfer with automatic fallback and retry logic, and has been optimized to minimize power consumption by turning on only to initiate a transmission.
  • MoMo modules use Microchip PIC ultra-low-power processors (the PIC24 and PIC16 families). MoMo requires a 3.8V Lithium Ion battery, the standard option being a 1400 mAh unit, and manages charging that battery when an external DC power source is connected. This can be a discrete constant-voltage power source (such as a standard 5V mico-USB cell phone wall charger) or, more commonly for rural deployments, a small 5V solar panel.
  • MoMo has been designed to fit into PolyCase's NEMA 4x-rated waterproof enclosure WP-21F. While not required, this case makes an excellent foundation for an enclosure that integrates with the infrastructure to be monitored. WellDone has successfully prototyped MoMo enclosures that integrate with water pumps using 3D-printing technology.
Strato Management Portal:
  • WellDone manages a server infrastructure called Strato which collects reports from deployed MoMo units, supports management of those remote units when available (i.e. remote configuration and firmware reflash). Strato provides an interface to view and analyze historical data from remote monitors and management of those devices, as well as a REST API for programatic access to data and integration with other software applications. Strato also supports basic configuration of triggers which can be used to send SMS and email alerts to certain people when specific threshholds are hit. For instance, this could automatically send an SMS to a pump's assigned mechanic when the MoMo on that pump detects no water flow for 24 hours.
  • The basic procedure for MoMo operation is:
    • 1- Sensor boards collect information from the MoMo's surroundings at predetermined intervals. For instance, MoMo could read the flow rate in a pipe every 10 seconds and also detect the voltage of a solar panel powering the water pump every 10 minutes.
    • 2- The controller aggregates the raw data to conserve bandwidth and sends this information regularly (i.e. every day) to a communication module, which takes care of transmitting the report back to a central server. The report is also stored locally so it can be manually recovered if necessary.
    • 3- The Strato data server receives the report, parses it, and performs further analysis to compute aggregate statistics and, if configured, send SMS or email alerts to key stakeholders. The raw and aggregate data is stored securely and can be visualized in the management portal as well as accessed via a REST API.
    • 4- Alerts and reports are distributed via email or SMS to key recipients to ensure that the data is put to good use.

Product Schematics

Technical Support

Unknown, however as an open-source solutions users are equipped with troubleshooting guidelines and substantial design details enabling self-support.

Replacement Components

Available for purchase via online retailers.



Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters

Performance Targets include:

  • - Long battery life
  • - SMS and GPRS data transfer
  • - Configurable data verbosity and reporting frequency
  • - 1MB local Flash storage
  • - Bluetooth Low Energy for non-intrusive local configuration and debugging
  • - Remote configuration and firmware reflash (when GPRS is available)

Vetted Performance Status

Unknown, however experts advise that an important performance parameter to take into account is the average battery life for different samples frequencies. Additionally, it is useful to consider the network topology used to connect sensors to the central point to estimate the complexity of the deployment.


No hazards listed.

Complementary Technical Systems


Academic Research and References

  1. Evan Thomas Luis Alberto Andrés Christian Borja-Vega Germán Sturzenegger. Innovations in WASH Impact Measures: Water and Sanitation Measurement Technologies and Practices to Inform the Sustainable Development Goals. 10.1596/978-1-4648-1197-5
  2. Cooper, Nathan John and Swan, Andrew and Gamble, Will and Pritchard, Martin (2018) Using smart pumps to help deliver universal access to safe and affordable drinking water. Engineering Sustainability, 171 (6). pp. 277-285. ISSN 1478-4629
  3. Michael Nique and Kennedy Opala (2014): The Synergies between Mobile, Energy and Water Access: Africa. GSMA Mobile Enabled Community Services

Compliance with regulations


Evaluation methods

Field trials.

Other Information

MoMo received funding from the World Bank. MoMo is the 2015 Winner of the Vodafone Wireless Innovation Project Competition. Experts state that the solution requires infrastructure in order to be deployed in isolated areas. It can be complemented with multihop networks with technologies like ZigBee or Bluetooth.

Comments from the Community


  1. Matt McCambridge says:

    Not much here to react to. the photo does not match the description of a 4-wheeled vehicle with a solar panel. However both seem to describe something used for outdoor mobility vs indoor mobility–moving around the community vs. inside a home or inside a bathroom stall. if this is true they should define their user group more carefully as people who are comfortable walking / crawling / being carried indoors (example: amputee who walks indoors with crutch, polio survivor who crawls, child with a caregiver) or need a device indoors as well (example: spinal cord injury) but have an additional separate mobility device they use indoors.

    All in all, there is not enough information about this device to include it alongside actual products.

  2. E4C.COMMENTS says:

    wilfredo.torres says:

    it could be interesting to know how is the network topology used to connect sensors to the central point. Understanding that with GSM/GPRS centralized (star) and large-coverage topology is used, an important additional performance parameter to take into account is the AVERAGE BATTERY LIFE for different samples frequencies.

  3. E4C.COMMENTS says:

    Yoo-Yoo Yeh says:

    Hello – Were any research studies on efficacy and behavioral change carried out using this sensor? It looks like the sensors have all stopped working – is there any plan to replace the batteries and keep them going?
    Who would be a good person to contact about this project? Thank you very much.

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