Gravity flow water distribution systems are reliable and cost effective over pumping systems as no external power is required to maintain the flow. Generally, the gravitational networks are designed as branched systems and in order to maintain their looped configuration the missing links are joined by pipes of nominal diameters. This approach does not take full advantage of looped configuration for economy and reliability. Presented herein is an algorithm for the design of a gravity flow distribution system with looped configuration and multiple input points. A linear programming (LP) technique has been used to solve the discrete problem for the optimal pipe design, keeping the looped configuration intact. Also developed is a criterion for the choice between the pumping and gravity systems where the elevation difference is marginal. It is hoped that the algorithm will be useful to engineers engaged in the design of gravity flow water distribution networks.

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