The unsteady flow analysis of pipeline systems provides useful guidelines for implementing data acquisition components such as data filtering ranges, sensor locations and sampling frequencies. A theoretical integration among hydraulics, free vibration analysis and signal processing is proposed for a comprehensive approach aiming at enhanced design and operation of data acquisition system. Transient analysis is performed to extract flow variation by a valve modulation in a pipeline system. Frequency transformation analysis is developed to convert pressure variations between time domain and frequency domain. Free vibration analysis provides spatial distribution of impedance characteristics and pressure variation for determining optimum sensor location. A real-time filter can be designed to secure valid signals of any particular unsteady event. Hypothetical and experimental applications show that the proposed method has potentials of the leakage detection of a pipeline system as well as an efficient design of data acquisition system.

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