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Project Summary
Under normal steady state conditions, leakage from potable water systems occur outwards due to the positive pressure differential between the water in the pipe and the lower pressure in the surrounding ground.  There are possibilities that under transient dynamic conditions the pressure in the pipe is sufficiently lowered so that a negative pressure with respect to the surrounding ground water pressure will occur.  This could drive ingress of water and fine sediment into the pipe.  If the intruded water contained contaminants then a risk to human health would exist. Three factors must coincide for contaminant ingress to occur: (i) a change in the hydraulic conditions must generate low or negative pressure, (ii) an aperture must be present in the pipe system and (iii) a contaminant source must be present.

This project undetook an investigation of the ingress processes by constructing a sophisticated laboratory experimental rig that allowed for the impact of the changes in a number parameters to be assessed and subsequently to inform and verify modeling tools to evaluate the potential for contaminant ingress within complex water distribution networks.

Industrial Collaborators

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Southern Water

This project was funded by EPSRC grant EP/G015546/1 EPSRC Logo
Maintained and updated by Sam Fox and Richard Collins, June 2015