project

Co-creating design software for the distribution network

Development of DiVerDi software for GeoWater

Expert(s):
Andreas Moerman MSc, Bram Hillebrand MSc, Mirjam Blokker PhD, Mark Morley PhD

  • Start date
    01 Oct 2019
  • End date
    01 Oct 2019
  • Principal
    The PeopleGroup
  • collaborating partners
    The PeopleGroup, Brabant Water

Drinking water utilities strive to achieve maximum quality in the provision of drinking water to customers. This aspiration relates not only to the treatment of drinking water, but also to its distribution. A well-structured and grounded design process is essential to ensure preparedness for the challenges of the future.

The PeopleGroup, in collaboration with KWR, have developed the ‘GeoWater’ design tool for Brabant Water for the purpose of (1) standardising and (2) accelerating the design of tertiary pipe networks. GeoWater supports Brabant Water in accelerating the replacement of its distribution network.

Uniformity and acceleration of the design process: a challenge

It is anticipated that in the (near) future the demand for greater capacity for the design and installation of water mains will increase as a result the growing number of network rehabilitations. At Brabant Water, this acceleration is known as the  ‘Masterplan Vitalisatie’. The challenge in this acceleration process is to ensure the uniformity and the quality of the pipe network design. This is especially so in cases where the pipe network design is sub-contracted to third parties. Supporting the design process with design software provides a solution here. By having all the designers proceed through the same design steps, the uniformity can be ensured. Thanks to the increased design efficiency, it also becomes possible to execute more design projects with the same capacity (man-hours).

GeoWater: co-creation of design software

The PeopleGroup developed the GeoWater design tool on a commission from Brabant Water. GeoWater streamlines the entire design process of the tertiary pipe network, from sketch to list of materials. GeoWater is able, on the basis of public data sources (BAG, BGT, etc.) and of data from the drinking water utility, to create a cost-optimal design for the tertiary pipe network. The hydraulic test of the designs created by GeoWater has been developed by KWR on the basis of the ‘DiVerDi’ software (Dimensioneren Vertakt Ontwerp), which KWR developed previously. DiVerDi controls the tertiary design assuming a minimal service pressure and minimal flow velocity for self-cleaning.

KWR collaboration with The PeopleGroup: future opportunities

GeoWater has now been delivered to Brabant Water. The current GeoWater/DiVerDi version is equipped with a basic testing function for the hydraulic design – that is, on the basis of what is known as the q√n method.

KWR expects there will be several chances in the future to further improve the design of tertiary pipe networks. The collaboration between KWR and The PeopleGroup, and the further development of GeoWater, offers various opportunities in this context, for example:

  • the use of SIMDEUM patterns  for household and non-household consumption, to produce better designs of tertiary pipe networks;
  • acceleration of the design process through the application of optimisation algorithms to determine the ideal pipe diameter;
  • the prevention of hotspots in the pipe network by taking account of the impact of shadows – e.g., trees and buildings – on the design profile.