Philadelphia's Water System Automation Plan

by Carmen F. Guarino, (M.ASCE), Water Commissioner and Chf. Engr.; Water Dept., Philadelphia, Pa.,
John J. Smith, Jr., Corporate Mgr.; Process Design, Black, Crow and Eidsness, Inc., Gainesville, Fla.,
Robert E. Day, Northeast Regional Mgr.; Black, Crow and Eidsness, Inc., Gainesville, Fla.,
Patrick R. Cairo, (A.M.ASCE), Asst. Chf.; Research and Development, Water Dept., Philadelphia, Pa.,
Alan Hess, (M.ASCE), Chf. of Treatment; Water Dept., Philadelphia, Pa.,
Joseph V. Radziul, Chf.; Research and Development, Water Dept., Philadelphia, Pa.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Environmental Engineering Division, 1976, Vol. 102, Issue 5, Pg. 953-968

Document Type: Journal Paper


The writers describe the development of a 5-yr master plan to implement a modern integrated total system automation of the City of Philadelphia's water treatment and distribution facilities including associated components. Analytical instrumentation and other devices located in the rivers, the treatment process, and distribution system provide information through communication links to process control computers. The data are analyzed by the master control computer which utilizes especially derived algorithms to determine adjustments of chemical feeds and process flows via supervisory control of the plant's equipment. This paper examines the multidisciplined approach taken to the problem, starting with the review of the treatment processes, continuing with strategies for improving treatment methods, the development of the five-level hierarchical control structure and the derivation of advanced control strategies for computer-based process control and management.

Subject Headings: Water treatment plants | Structural control | Automation | Information systems | Computer analysis | Chemical processes | Management methods | Integrated systems | Philadelphia | Pennsylvania | United States

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