Leakage–pressure relationship and leakage detection in intermittent water distribution systems

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Field investigations were conducted to identify the relationship between leakage rate and pressure in selected areas of the water distribution system of the Holy City of Makkah, Saudi Arabia. Noise correlators were used to detect leaks in areas where the water leakage exceeded 20% of the total water supplied. The leakage rate was found to be related to pressure raised to the nth power. The value of n was found to be 0.50 for the network of asbestos-cement pipes and 1.16 for the network of mixed pipes. Considering the age of the network, the leakage rate was found to be linearly related to the age of the network and related to pressure raised to the 1.10 power. About 63.15% of the leaks were found to be at the property connections. The rest were either in the service lines or at the junction of the service lines with the property connections. The galvanized iron property connections were found to be highly corroded, with circular holes and/or longitudinal corrosion cracks.

Keywords: leak detection, leak localizing, leakage, water distribution network, water losses

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