A water distribution system consists of a complex network of interconnected pipes, service reservoirs and pumps which deliver water from the treatment plant to the consumer. Water demand is highly variable, both by day and by season. Supply by contrast, is normally constant. Consequently, the distribution system must include storage elements and must be capable of flexible operation.
Part of the design of such systems is to carry out an analysis of the system in order to determine various parameters such as pipe sizes, flows, material etc. An analysis is generally carried out by computer simulation, in which a numerical model of the system is initially calibrated to the field data before being used in a predictive mode. The model is a simplified version of the real system, and in particular, demands from the system are assumed to be concentrated at pipe ends or junctions.
Shown above is the simulation of a network system which I carried out using the EPANET sofware. This software was developed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Water Supply and Water Resources Division.
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