Control of water distribution networks with dynamic DMA topology using strictly feasible sequential convex programming

Robert Wright, Edo Abraham, Panos Parpas, Ivan Stoianov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


The operation of water distribution networks (WDN) with a dynamic topology is a recently pioneered approach for the advanced management of District Metered Areas (DMAs) that integrates novel developments in hydraulic modeling, monitoring, optimization, and control. A common practice for leakage management is the sectorization of WDNs into small zones, called DMAs, by permanently closing isolation valves. This facilitates water companies to identify bursts and estimate leakage levels by measuring the inlet flow for each DMA. However, by permanently closing valves, a number of problems have been created including reduced resilience to failure and suboptimal pressure management. By introducing a dynamic topology to these zones, these disadvantages can be eliminated while still retaining the DMA structure for leakage monitoring. In this paper, a novel optimization method based on sequential convex programming (SCP) is outlined for the control of a dynamic topology with the objective of reducing average zone pressure (AZP). A key attribute for control optimization is reliable convergence. To achieve this, the SCP method we propose guarantees that each optimization step is strictly feasible, resulting in improved convergence properties. By using a null space algorithm for hydraulic analyses, the computations required are also significantly reduced. The optimized control is actuated on a real WDN operated with a dynamic topology. This unique experimental program incorporates a number of technologies set up with the objective of investigating pioneering developments in WDN management. Preliminary results indicate AZP reductions for a dynamic topology of up to 6.5% over optimally controlled fixed topology DMAs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9925-9941
Number of pages17
JournalWater Resources Research
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • dynamic topology
  • flow modulation
  • optimization
  • pressure management
  • water distribution networks

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