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On Site Leak Location in a Pipe Network by Cepstrum Analysis of Pressure Transients (PDF)

  • Author(s): Shucksmith, James D.; Boxall, Joby B.; Staszewski, Wieslaw J.; Seth, Allyson; Beck, Stephen B.M.
  • Publications: Journal - American Water Works Association
  • Issue Date: August 2012
  • Volume / Number: 104, Number 8
  • Page(s): E457-E465
  • DOI:
  • Product Number: JAW_0076277
Full Text: pdf
Expanded Summary: pdf

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Leakage is a major source of lost revenue in pipeline distribution networks. In United Kingdom water distribution networks, the amount of treated water lost within distribution networks can reach up to 40% of the total supply. Existing leakage location techniques are heavily dependent on acoustic sensing, which can perform poorly in situations in which the noise created by a leak is small or attenuates rapidly. A reliable, nonacoustic-based location technique would be a significant advance for the water industry. The work presented here applies a pressure transient-based technique for leak location, which has previously only been tested under laboratory conditions, to a live water distribution network. The method has the potential to increase the speed and accuracy of leak locations and reduce the occurrence of inaccurate leak diagnosis. A single device that fits to standard fire hydrants is used to generate a mild transient and collect the required data. This method is based on analyzing pressure waves reflected by leaks and other features in a pipeline and accurately identifies reflections in measurements of the small pressure wave caused by pipeline features, including leaks. The technique requires accurate estimation of the wave propagation speed; a simple empirical approach for determining this is included.

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