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Title: A Proof-of-Concept Study for Hydraulic Model-Based Leakage Detection in Water Pipelines Using Pressure Monitoring Data
It is estimated that about 20% of treated drinking water is lost through distribution pipeline leakages in the United States. Pipeline leakage detection is a top priority for water utilities across the globe as leaks increase operational energy consumption and could also develop into potentially catastrophic water main breaks, if left unaddressed. Leakage detection is a laborious task often limited by the financial and human resources that utilities can afford. Many conventional leak detection techniques also only offer a snapshot indication of leakage presence. Furthermore, the reliability of many leakage detection techniques on plastic pipelines that are increasingly preferred for drinking water applications is questionable. As part of a smart water utility framework, this paper proposes and validates a hydraulic model-based technique for detecting and assessing the severity of leakages in buried water pipelines through monitoring of pressure from across the water distribution system (WDS). The envisioned smart water utility framework entails the capabilities to collect water consumption data from a limited number of WDS nodes and pressure data from a limited number of pressure monitoring stations placed across the WDS. A popular benchmark WDS is initially modified by inducing leakages through addition of orifice nodes. The leakage severity is more » controlled using emitter coefficients of the orifice nodes. WDS pressure data for various sets of demands is subsequently gathered from locations where pressure monitoring stations are to be placed in that modified distribution network. An evolutionary optimization algorithm is subsequently used to predict the emitter coefficients so as to determine the leakage severities based on the hydraulic dependency of the monitored pressure data on various sets of nodal demands. Artificial neural networks (ANNs) are employed to mimic the popular hydraulic solver EPANET 2.2 for high computational efficiency. The goals of this study are to: (1) validate the proof of concept of the proposed modeling approach for detecting and assessing the severity of leakages and (2) evaluate the sensitivity of the prediction accuracy to number of pressure monitoring stations and number of demand nodes at which consumption data is gathered and used. This study offers new value to prioritize pipes for rehabilitation by predicting leakages through a hydraulic model-based approach. « less
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Frontiers in Water
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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