A framework for improving reliability of water distribution systems based on a segment-based minimum cut-set approach

Seokhyeon Kim, Hwan Don Jun, Do Guen Yoo, Joong Hoon Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


A framework is presented to effectively improve the water distribution system (WDS) reliability. The proposed framework first classifies pipes in a WDS into three reinforcement types through topological analyses and hydraulic simulations over the WDS; type 1: no reinforcement, type 2: increasing pipe durability, and type 3: installing valve(s) at both ends. Then two rules, rules 1 and 2, are implemented, in which rule 1 first reinforces the pipe with the lowest reliability but rule 2 preferentially reduces damage size by pipe failures represented as the expected number of customers out of service (EN). The proposed method was applied to Cherry Hill network, and considerably improved the WDS reliability from 0.137 to 0.483. Both approaches showed notable differences in changes of the EN at each step of reinforcement, where rule 2 showed a better capability to reduce the EN and detect vulnerable areas in the WDS than rule 1. In addition, a practical approach, maximizing valve installations and minimizing pipe replacements according to the reinforcement types in the system, provided an improved WDS reliability (0.423) close to that of the rule-based approach (0.483) using only 21% of the construction cost by the rule-based approach. The proposed framework can be guidelines for improving the WDS reliability under restricted budget and site conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1524
JournalWater (Switzerland)
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jul 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding: This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MSIT). (No. 2019R1A2B5B03069810).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 by the authors.


  • Minimum cut-sets
  • System reliability
  • Unintended isolation
  • Valve
  • Water distribution system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Aquatic Science
  • Water Science and Technology


Dive into the research topics of 'A framework for improving reliability of water distribution systems based on a segment-based minimum cut-set approach'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this