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How to prioritize where the pipeline for water and sewage is to be renewed?

Published: 2 October 2018

Andreas Nilsson och Fredrik Stoltz have studied Master Programme in Civil Engineering at Luleå University of Technology. The have now finalized and published their Master Thesis work. The thesis is about how water utilities can prioritize in which areas the pipe system needs to be renewed.

The have developed an evaluation model that aim to keep or increase the service level of the customers. In-data for the model was based on statistics about operational failures and information about the pipes (age, material and soil conditions). Open source programs were used for analyses and visualization of the needs of renewal. The Master thesis work was conducted in co-operation with Boden Municipality.

"The results of the analysis show that there was a clear correlation between leakages on potable water pipes and impacting factors such as soil conditions, pipe material and pipe age," Fredrik Stoltz explains.

A method has been developed to support water utilities to identify critical factors in a specific municipality, in relation to available information. A methodology was also developed about how water utilities efficiently can compile old reported pipe failures and illustrate these with open source programs.

"We have also developed an evaluation method for utilities to be used to identify in which areas the water utility should go for renewal of the system," Andreas Nilsson says.

A recommendation about how the municipality the coming years should prioritize pipe renewal in relation to service level and pipe conditions was also developed for Boden municipality.

"Fredrik and Andreas have tackled one of the water sector’s main challenges with great energy and creativity, and their results will support us in our coming plans of pipe renewal," Magnus Bäckström, division leader at the Water Utility of Boden, says.

Annelie Hedström

Hedström, Annelie - Professor

Organisation: Urban Water Engineering, Architecture and Water, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering
Phone: +46 (0)920 492309
Kajsa Simu

Simu, Kajsa - Adjunct Senior Lecturer

Organisation: Construction Management and Building Technology , Industrialized and sustainable construction, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering