The optimal placement of sensors in water distribution systems for burst/leak detection is usually formulated as an optimization problem. In this study three different risk-based functions are used to drive optimal location of a given number of sensors in water distribution network. A simple function based on likelihood of leak non-detection is compared with two other risk-based functions, where impact and exposure are combined with the leak detection likelihood. The impact is considered proportional to the demand water volume while the exposure is related to the importance of the connections and it is evaluated on social, economic or safety considerations. The methods are applied to a district metered area of the Harrogate network by means of a modified EPANET model, to take into account the pressure driven functioning conditions of the system. The results show that the exposure can lead to a different sensor location ranking with respect to other used criteria and hence the proposed methodology can represent a useful tool for the water system managers to distribute the sensors in the network, complying to hydraulic, social and economical requirements.
- leak detection
- risk management
- water distribution systems
- First received 19 December 2016.
- Accepted in revised form 4 April 2017.
- © IWA Publishing 2017