Attenuation cells, (also known as Storm Cells, Soakaway Modules, and Storm Crates) are the modern equivalent of a soakaway. They allow surface water to be stored in one location and gradually released back to the ground, a bit at a time, at a pace the ground can handle, rather than in one sudden deluge, as happens during a storm or downpour. In effect, the transfer of water from the surface to the ground is attenuated, is slowed down and stretched out over a longer period.
If you dump 1,000 litres of water onto a patch of ground in one go, unless you’re on sand or gravel, it’s unlikely the ground will be able to absorb all that water instantly: attenuation cells work by taking all the water as fast as it’s delivered, returning what it can to the ground as quickly as possible, but storing the surplus until the ground is ready and able to absorb it.
Attenuation cells are specially manufactured, modular cells that provide lots of space (void space, as it’s termed) within a cheap, lightweight structure that is capable of supporting quite significant loads when buried. Some cells can be placed beneath pavements and are strong enough to carry both foot and low-speed vehicular traffic.
As part of a full drainage system, a soak-away will provide an effective and low environmental- impact solution to surface water run-off.
Over recent years in Britain there has been a change in the rules and regulations that cover drainage. Soak-aways are the most popular form of SUDS (Sustainable drainage systems) when used in conjunction with paving. Soak-aways function by gradually returning the surface water back to the environment. With the use of load bearing attenuation cells (storm cells or storm crates), we can install a soak-away directly underneath your drive or lawn.