Intermittent Water Supply

Abstract: Providing citizens with clean water in a stable manner is one of the key responsibilities of a developed society. Although 24-hour supply of piped water is desired, many urban residents in India and other developing countries do not receive it. In Jamshedpur, India, water is supplied to local residents only four hours a day: two hours in the morning and another two hours in the evening. Exacerbating the problem is the fact that the water is stored in a large reservoir, the Central Water Tower, and the main force transferring the water is gravity. This means that those who live near the tower get better water supply than those who live far away.

This situation, some version of which occurs in numerous Indian cities, has manifold negative effects. One of the most pressing is the fact that inconsistent water pressure can allow wastewater to flow into the pipes, contaminating the water supply that residents depend on for drinking, bathing, and other basic needs. (Andey & Kelkar, 2007) In addition, those who live far from the central distribution point may get as little as 15 minutes of water supply per day, in some cases forcing them to buy, trade, or steal to get the water they need.

The first step to solving this problem is to understand the pipe network and the water pressure behavior in pipes during water delivery. We will use mathematical modeling to comprehend the system and enable detection of leakage and pollution. The long-term goal is to increase efficiency and facilitate active management of urban water systems in India.