Discrete Gradient Optimization of Water Systems

by Chan F. Lam, Asst. Prof.; Dept. of Biometry, Medical Univ. of South Carolina, Charleston, S.C.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Hydraulics Division, 1973, Vol. 99, Issue 6, Pg. 863-872

Document Type: Journal Paper

Discussion: Charles Carl O. A. (See full record)
Discussion: McBean Edward A. (See full record)
Closure: (See full record)


With the present optimization techniques, diameter of pipes is assumed to be continuous. At the end of the optimization process, the diameter of pipes is then rounded to the nearest available size. This will give an approximate minimum at best, and possibly a nonfeasible solution. A discrete optimization technique that treats pipe diameter as discrete variable and flow and head loss as continuous variable is formulated. It has been applied to a fairly large water transmission system with good results. This technique can be used to design a completely new system as well as an expanding one. Other pipe networks, such as oil pipeline and aircraft fuel system, can also be designed by means of this technique.

Subject Headings: Pipe sizes | Oil pipelines | Pipe networks | Head loss (fluid mechanics) | Power transmission | Pipe flow | Water pipelines

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