Robust meter network for water distribution pipe burst detection

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


A meter network is a set of meters installed throughout a water distribution system to measure system variables, such as the pipe flow rate and pressure. In the current hyper-connected world, meter networks are being exposed to meter failure conditions, such as malfunction of the meter's physical system and communication system failure. Therefore, a meter network's robustness should be secured for reliable provision of informative meter data. This paper introduces a multi-objective optimal meter placement model that maximizes the detection probability, minimizes false alarms, and maximizes the robustness of a meter network given a predefined number of meters. A meter network's robustness is defined as its ability to consistently provide quality data in the event of meter failure. Based on a single-meter failure simulation, a robustness indicator for the meter network is introduced and maximized as the third objective of the proposed model. The proposed model was applied to the Austin network to determine the independent placement of pipe flow and pressure meters with three or five available meters. The results showed that the proposed model is a useful tool for determining meter locations to secure high detectability and robustness.

Original languageEnglish
Article number820
JournalWater (Switzerland)
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Oct 26


  • Meter network
  • Pipe burst detection
  • Robustness
  • Water distribution system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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