Development of a semi-automated model identification and calibration tool for conceptual modelling of sewer systems

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Applications such as real-time control, uncertainty analysis and optimization require an extensive number of model iterations. Full hydrodynamic sewer models are not sufficient for these applications due to the excessive computation time. Simplifications are consequently required. A lumped conceptual modelling approach results in a much faster calculation. The process of identifying and calibrating the conceptual model structure could, however, be time-consuming. Moreover, many conceptual models lack accuracy, or do not account for backwater effects. To overcome these problems, a modelling methodology was developed which is suited for semi-automatic calibration. The methodology is tested for the sewer system of the city of Geel in the Grote Nete river basin in Belgium, using both synthetic design storm events and long time series of rainfall input. A MATLAB/Simulink® tool was developed to guide the modeller through the step-wise model construction, reducing significantly the time required for the conceptual modelling process.

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