Different methods have been developed in the past to formulate and solve steady-state hydraulics of a water distribution system (WDS). The most widely used method nowadays is probably the global gradient algorithm (GGA). The loop-flow method (also known as the ΔQ method) represents a viable alternative to GGA, especially when combined with suitably preprocessed network data. The main advantage of the ΔQ method over the GGA is in the smaller number of unknowns to solve for, which is coming from the fact that real WDSs typically have far less loops than nodes. A new loop-flow-type method, relying on the novel triangulation based loops identification algorithm (TRIBAL) that was implemented in the corresponding new hydraulic solver (ΔQ), is presented in this paper (TRIBAL-ΔQ). The new method aims to exploit this advantage, while overcoming key drawbacks of existing ΔQ methods. The performance of the TRIBAL- ΔQ-based solver is compared with the GGA-based solver on four large real networks of different complexity and topology. The results obtained demonstrate that, despite requiring an increased number of iterations to converge, the TRIBAL-ΔQ method-based solver is substantially computationally faster, has slightly better numerical stability, and is equally accurate in making predictions when compared with the GGA-based hydraulic solver.
|Journal of Water Resources Planning and Management
|Published - 1 Apr 2018
- Global gradient algorithm (GGA)
- Loop flow
- Minimal loops
- WDS analysis
- ΔQ method