Asset management and nondestructive evaluation of force mains in New York City

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Management of infrastructure assets has been gaining increased attention recently because of aging infrastructures. Wastewater infrastructures, such as sewers, force mains, etc., maintained by various municipalities across the nation are at increased risk of failure since they are buried underground and are usually scheduled for maintenance/repair only after a breakage. Force mains are a vital link in the wastewater infrastructure since they carry wastewater under pressure from a low point in the collection system to a high point and then drain to the water pollution control plant. They seldom undergo inspection to identify critical damages before breakage occurs because of inaccessibility and lack of redundancy. This paper presents the work carried out recently by the authors on development of a comprehensive asset management system for the force mains of the New York City Department of Environmental Protection. The paper discusses three key aspects of asset management system, namely, development of asset inventory database, standards for inspection ratings, and technologies for internal inspection. Feasibility of a selected technology using ultrasonic scanning has been demonstrated through pilot testing on a 100 ft. pipe segment.

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