A Comprehensive Decision Support System(CDSS) for Optimal Pipe Renewal using Trenchless Technologies
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Water distribution system pipes span thousands of miles and form a significant part of the total infrastructure of the country. Rehabilitation of this underground infrastructure is one of the biggest challenges currently facing the water industry. Water main deterioration is twofold: the main itself loses strength over time and breaks; also, there is degradation of water quality and hydraulic capacity due to build of material within a main. The increasing repair and damage costs and degrading services demand that a deteriorating water main be replaced at an optimal time instead of continuing to repair it. In addition, expanding business districts, indirect costs, and interruptions including protected areas, waterways and roadways require examination of trenchless technologies for pipe installation. In this thesis a new threshold break rate criterion for the optimal replacement of pipes is provided. As opposed to the traditional present worth cost (PWC) criterion, the derived method uses the equivalent uniform annualized cost (EUAC). It is shown the EUAC based threshold break rate subsumes the PWC based threshold break rate. In addition, practicing engineers need a user-friendly decision support system to aid in the optimal pipeline replacement process. They also need a task-by-task cost evaluation in a project. As a part of this thesis a comprehensive decision support system that includes both technology selection knowledge base and cost evaluation spreadsheet program within a graphical user interface framework is developed. Numerical examples illustrating the theoretical derivations are also included.
- Masters Theses