Demonstrating Innovative Water Leakage Reduction Strategies - Correlating Continuous Acoustic Monitoring, Satellite Imagery, and Flow Sensitive Pressure Reducing Valve System
June 25, 2021
Energy Research and Development (500)
Electric Program Investment Charge - EPIC
Tori Yokoyama, P.E., Peace Maari, EIT, Emily Von Hagen, EIT, Lynn Grijalva, P.E., Benjamin Stanford, Ph.D., Minhua Xu, P.E., and Zia Bukhari, Ph.D.
The project team installed and evaluated the latest in advanced correlating continuous acoustic monitoring technology, satellite imagery leak detection, and flow sensitive pressure reducing valve systems to reduce water leakage and prevent water loss in California water utility networks. Because of the embedded energy in water pumping and treatment, reduced water loss directly correlates with reduced energy loss. Evaluation was a cooperative effort with the vendors to improve the developing tools. During the project, the team also evaluated the financial and water/energy saving benefits associated with the technologies and provided guidance for utilities to evaluate the technologies for applicability to other systems.
The project team compared the performance of continuous acoustic monitoring technology and satellite imagery leak detection, but a key conclusion was that both technologies are effective in locating subsurface leaks that would have been invisible to the casual observer and should be considered for future applications. Based on budget, resources, schedule, system characteristics, and other factors, future users should consider what is best for their systems. Using both technologies in the same system may be an effective way to take advantage of the strengths of each method. The two technologies found leaks that would have resulted in 57-170 million gallons of lost water, equal to 140-419 megawatt-hours of energy savings.