In The Netherlands, wastewater is collected in municipal areas and transported to large centralised WWTPs by means of an extensive system of pressure mains. Over the past decades these pressure mains did not receive much attention in terms of monitoring of performance or maintenance. For that reason, in practice their state of functioning is often not known. Failure of operation is only noticed when the capacity of the system proves to be insufficient to fulfil the minimum design capacity demand. A recent inventory showed that half of the pressure mains show an increased pressure loss for no directly obvious reason. Many causes may account for the reduction of the system's nominal capacity like an increased wall roughness, scaling or occurrence of free gas in the pipeline. The occurrence of free gas may be caused by degassing of dissolved (bio) gas or by air entrained at the pumps' inlet or at air valves. A research study is started that will focus on three main issues:

  • • The description of the gas-water phenomena in wastewater pressure mains with respect totransportation and dynamic hydraulic behaviour,

  • • A method to diagnose gas problems, and

  • • To overcome future problems by either applying remedial measures or improving the design ofwastewater pressure systems.

For this study, two experimental facilities are constructed, a small circuit for the study of multi-phase flow and a second, larger one for the research into diagnostic methods. This paper describes the preliminary results of the experiments in the multi-phase circuit.

This content is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.