Assessing the functioning and the performance of urban drainage systems on both rainfall event and yearly time scales is usually based on online measurements of flow rates and on samples of influent and effluent for some rainfall events per year. In order to draw pertinent scientific and operational conclusions from the measurement results, it is absolutely necessary to use appropriate methods and techniques in order to i) calibrate sensors and analytical methods, ii) validate raw data, iii) evaluate measurement uncertainties, iv) evaluate the number of rainfall events to sample per year in order to determine performance indicator with a given uncertainty. Based on previous work, the paper gives a synthetic review of required methods and techniques, and illustrates their application to storage and settling tanks. Experiments show that, despite controlled and careful experimental conditions, relative uncertainties are about 20% for flow rates in sewer pipes, 6-10% for volumes, 25-35% for TSS concentrations and loads, and 18-276% for TSS removal rates. In order to evaluate the annual pollutant interception efficiency of storage and settling tanks with a given uncertainty, efforts should first be devoted to decrease the sampling uncertainty by increasing the number of sampled events.
Accounting for sensor calibration, concentration heterogeneity, measurement and sampling uncertainties in monitoring urban drainage systems
J.-L. Bertrand-Krajewski, J.-P. Bardin, M. Mourad, Y. Béranger; Accounting for sensor calibration, concentration heterogeneity, measurement and sampling uncertainties in monitoring urban drainage systems. Water Sci Technol 1 January 2003; 47 (2): 95–102. doi: https://doi.org/10.2166/wst.2003.0094
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