Performance Evaluation of a Water Distribution Network with the help of a Computer Model – Breman Asikuma

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It is pertinent that in a bid to minimise cost and yet still provide excellent services, water utilities find means of operating and maintaining their water systems efficiently and effectively. Computer modelling which is now catching up in Ghana has been adopted all over the world as the key to effective monitoring of water supply systems. They are used to monitor the system through pressurised nipes as well as water quality changes from the treatment to the final consumer. This study examines the Breman Asikuma network constructed to serve a population of about 12,200 in the Central Region. The study involves an assessment of pressure levels and water quality in the system. Computer software that was developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency EPANET was used in building the model and assessing it. Two (2) models with 5 different scenarios were built for the network. The hydraulic component used is from data collected from the design report and calibrated to reflect changes on the ground, Measurements were also carried out during the fieldwork, water quality results are from past records and laboratory test carried during the fieldwork. The models confirmed adequate pressures when compared to GWCL guidelines set in their manual. In two of the scenarios different pump units were recommended to boost pressure in the system. The water quality in terms of residual chlorine was inadequate and needed improvement. For all the scenarios, residual leaving the main elevated tank had to be increased with additional boosting at the hospital and one other node. Consumption of potable water was rather low in the community whereas the use of well, rain harvested and river water was relatively intense. Production at the treatment works is very low. it was recommended that extensive public education and sensitisation be carried out In the community as well as frequent monitoring of water quality. The use of models would go a long way in assisting the GWCL in planning maintenance schedules, assessing water quality and pressure levels in any network.
A thesis submitted to the Board of Postgraduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, in partial fulfilment of the requirement for the award of Master of Science in Water Supply and Environmental Sanitation, 2000