Developing and Validating a Model to Assess Sewer Sediment Issues from Changing Wastewater Inflows and Concentration

Madhu K. Murali, Matthew R. Hipsey, Anas Ghadouani, Zhiguo Yuan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperConference paperpeer-review


Sewers are critical for the maintenance of both public and environmental health in urban areas through their transport of wastewater for treatment. Despite significant costs associated with excess sewer solids deposition causing blockages and reduced hydraulic capacity, there are still gaps in our knowledge of sewer solids processes. This is particularly a concern with the implementation of Decentralised Water Recycling (DWR) and further reductions in per capita water consumption. This will reduce wastewater inflow to and increase the concentration of solids in sewers, leading to increased blockages and reduced hydraulic capacities in sewers. Sewer solids can be divided into two main groups based on their size: Gross solids and sewer sediments. This paper details the development, initial calibration, and validation of a comprehensive sewer sediment transport model to assist in quantifying the impacts of changing wastewater inflows and concentration. This model aims to facilitate the transition to more sustainable cities by reducing the uncertainties in the implementation of sustainable water measures, such as DWR and water use reduction. OpenFOAM, an open-source computational fluid dynamics package, was used to develop the sewer sediment model. This model has components that model flow, suspended sediment transport, bedload transport, and deposited bed development. Model calibration, using a square hydraulic flume, shows model results for flow and sediment transport are promising. Model validation experiments in a pilot-scale sewer system show that reducing sewer inflows are going to be a concern for sewer solids, especially in non-ideal or ageing sewers.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNew Trends in Urban Drainage Modelling - UDM 2018
EditorsGiorgio Mannina
PublisherSpringer-Verlag Berlin
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)9783319998664
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019
Event11th International Conference on Urban Drainage Modelling, UDM 2018 - Palermo, Italy
Duration: 23 Sept 201826 Sept 2018

Publication series

NameGreen Energy and Technology
ISSN (Print)1865-3529
ISSN (Electronic)1865-3537


Conference11th International Conference on Urban Drainage Modelling, UDM 2018
OtherThe 11th International Conference on Urban Drainage Modelling (UDM) has been running since 1986 and in 2018 will be held the 11th edition, a monumental achievement of the urban drainage community. The UDM conference series started back in 1986 in Dubrovnik, former Yugoslavia. The second edition of UDM was organized in 1991 also in Dubrovnik. After the first two editions in Dubrovnik, the conference has travelled across the globe to the River Volga (1994), London (1998), Orlando (2001), Dresden (2004), Melbourne (2006), Tokyo (2009), Belgrade (2012) and Québec (2015). In 2018 we will be meeting in Europe once again. The UDM Conference deals with the main and advanced topics related to modelling the urban drainage system (e.g., water quality and quantity, urban flooding and modelling, urban flood forecasting and risk analysis, socio-economic interactions and modelling tools, etc… ) by focusing the attention on the interrelationship among the entire water cycle, environment and society. The UDM seeks to create a forum for promoting the discussion amongst scientists, professionals and academia on urban drainage thus providing to women and men of this field decisive ideas. We also hope that your participation to the Conference in Palermo will provide you the opportunity to explore the rest of Italy, to savor its diverse and rich mixture of ethnic traditions, culture, cuisine and religious sites. We look forward to welcoming you to the colorful and vibrant city of Palermo and see you in 2018.
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