Stories of Technology, Innovation, & Entrepreneurship in the Southeast

Knoxville Business News Tennessee Mountain Scenery Background - Default Cover Image
January 20, 2014 | Tom Ballard

Slatton says SecureWaters “has a lot of things in the works”


(EDITOR’S NOTE: This is another is a series of articles providing updates on start-ups previously profiled on

By Tom Ballard, Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurial Initiatives, Pershing Yoakley & Associates, P.C.

We caught-up with Ray Slatton of SecureWaters, Inc., recently and learned of a number of developments at the company that we first profiled about 18 months ago in a article.

“We have a lot of things in the works,” the company’s Chief Executive Officer said, the most notable being a new iteration of its AquaSentinel product.

When we first met Slatton, the Soddy Daisy-based businessman was negotiating a license with Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) for the AquaSentinel, a patented bio-sensor technology that can monitor and protect water utilities.

After securing the license in late 2010, Slatton and his team began developing a Generation 3 device, while also presenting the technology at various conferences and seeking outside investors. One of the Gen 3 devices is currently deployed for beta testing at an American Water Works facility in Virginia.

Like many start-ups, SecureWaters’ journey has not been linear.

In early 2013, the company moved manufacturing to Tullahoma, although Slatton continues to be based in Soddy Daisy.

“We did a pivot a few months ago,” Slatton told us at a recent event at Tech 20/20.

That change brought about a rebranding with a new webpage and tagline – “The Voice of WaterTM” – and a corresponding emphasis on the environmental rather than industrial market.

Securing outside investors has been a challenge, although the soft spoken Slatton believes it will be easier with the advent of the Generation 4 device.

He explained that the “heart of the AquaSentinel” is a device called a fluorometer. When SecureWaters signed the license with ORNL, the company was using a fluorometer that cost $21,000.

“The new design reduces the cost of the unit 80 percent compared to a year ago,” Slatton said. The savings come from a sole purpose fluorometer, designed specifically for the AquaSentinel, with a significantly lower manufacturing cost.

Like what you've read?

Forward to a friend!

Don’t Miss Out on the Southeast’s Latest Entrepreneurial, Business, & Tech News!

Sign-up to get the Teknovation Newsletter in your inbox each morning!

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

No, thanks!