The University of Sheffield
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journal contribution
posted on 2017-09-01, 14:58 authored by C Loubser, HE Jacobs, SE Basson
Intermittent water supply is a worldwide phenomenon, that adversely impacts water availability,water quality, human health, reticulation network operation, maintenance, service life as well as water demand. A need was identified to develop an index designed to categorise, classify and better understand intermittent water supply in all its forms. Research to date has addressed the prevalence, causes, impacts, water quality, health problems, water demand and operational problems associated with intermittent water supply. Despite the available body of research, an index has not been developed to quantify the extent of intermittent supply in any given supply system, or part thereof. A study was conducted on the experience of intermittent water supply and lessons learnt throughout the world, with the specific aim of developing an index comprising all relevant parameters. The study included an extensive literature review and detail analyses of causes, impacts and magnitudes associated with intermittent water supply. As part of this research,all the relevant parameters were identified and incorporated to conceptually develop a generic index for intermittent water supply. It was found that intermittent water supply is often complicated by other factors leading to ephemeral periods of non-supply, especially in developing countries. Parameters that were available in quasi real-time, such as reservoir levels, flow rates and water pressure, were considered useful in view of future application to control and manage distribution systems so as to prevent areas of intermittent supply. With the index fully developed it will become possible to compare intermittent water supply in a global context, get an understanding of the causes, classify severity and potential impacts of intermittent water supply, better plan remedial action, and increase reticulation network resilience.


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    Department of Civil and Structural Engineering