On the weaknesses and limitations of EPANET as regards energy

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

With more than 1,500 citations in ranked journals and hundreds of thousands of downloads, EPANET is the benchmark software for analysis and design of pressurized water distribution networks. User-friendly, powerful and reliable, its public domain use has spread throughout the world. However, from an energy standpoint its capacity is limited to the point at which, in certain circumstances it can supply erroneous results. This is understandable because on the one hand its main aim was to model water quality, and on the other hand, because it was conceived and developed towards the end of the last century before people started talking about the water–energy nexus. Increases in the cost of energy and the need to limit greenhouse gas emissions, however, have made energy efficiency a primary and inescapable objective. As the transport of pressurized water is a big consumer of energy, it seems convenient for EPANET users, particularly for those who applied this software to pressurized irrigation networks, to understand, as far as energy is concerned, its weaknesses and limitations which, in the end, is the aim of this paper.

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