Maintaining water pipeline integrity

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ConferenceAWWA Infrastructure Conference and Exhibition: 12 March 2000, Baltimore, Maryland
Pages113; # of pages: 13
SubjectWater mains; Leak detection
AbstractRecent developments in the field of diagnostic techniques for water distribution and transmission systems have given water utilities new options for inspecting and assessing the condition of their pipelines. These new techniques include the remote field effect for inspecting both metallic and prestressed concrete pipes, refinements to leak detection systems for inspecting plastic and large diameter pipes, and impact echo, spectral analysis of surface wave and acoustic emission monitoring systems for the inspection or monitoring of prestressed concrete pipes. These techniques can provide specific information on the condition of the pipes and may indicate the depth of corrosion pits in a cast iron pipe, the number of wires broken in a prestressed concrete pipe or the precise location of leaks in a plastic pipe. However, the best uses of the data from the new techniques are not necessarily clear. While the presence of a leak would normally call for repairs, the appropriate action to deal with a corrosion pit of a specific depth or aparticular number of broken wires depends on many factors, including the size and type of the pipe, past break histories, surrounding environmental conditions and the way in which the pipe is likely to fail. This paper gives an overview of an approach to using diagnostic and other information tools for maintaining pipeline integrity. The key components to the approach will be presented. Some of these components include knowledge of the failure mechanisms for the various pipe materials, the diagnostic techniques themselves, methods for estimating the likelihood of pipe failure, and techniques for prioritising pipereplacements or repairs. Areas where further research is needed will be indicated and the implications of the approach for pipeline management will be discussed.
Publication date
AffiliationNRC Institute for Research in Construction; National Research Council Canada
Peer reviewedYes
NRC number43986
NPARC number20331196
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Record identifier59cd0b4f-1f93-42b3-be50-2bba0a82d524
Record created2012-07-18
Record modified2016-05-09
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