Impact of emerging water scenarios on performance of urban water networks

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Zhuang, Janice Gu

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Concerns over the impacts of urban growth have prompted the development and adoption of water-demand management strategies. Water and energy savings from increasingly efficient technologies, diversified water sources, and water savings policies are typically quantified from an individual demand-side basis, but network-wide potential is not well studied. This paper studies the effects of residential demand profiles on the performance of urban water networks, in response to emerging demand management strategies. To assess the performance of three demand scenarios: 1) base, 2) conservation, and 3) load-shifting, hydraulic simulations were conducted. Four metrics of network performance are suggested to evaluate responses to scenarios: water loss, water age, energy loss, and peak flow. The results revealed network performance for energy and flow metrics improved under both conservation and load-shifting scenarios. However, these scenarios had either a negative or an insignificant impact on water age and losses throughout the network. The results indicate potential savings from these demand profiles cannot be fully realized without adjustments in network operation, and may come at a cost in terms of water quality. This works suggests an initial tool for evaluating network-wide effects of different demand management strategies.


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