Monitoring & control of water processes

Our group has been a clear pioneer and developed many new monitoring applications. The scientific success is probably best measured through the impact that DTS has had over the past ten years in environmental sciences. The Trans-African Hydro-Meteorological Observatory (TAHMO) is a more recent but even more ambitious development in which we seek to install and operate a dense network of 20,000 weather stations across sub-Saharan Africa. The computation aspects come to the fore in the eWaterCycle project, which is the first global operational forecasting model with high resolution, data assimilation, and lateral movement of water.

Better understanding of the availability of water over time and space is extremely important in a world that needs to double its food production by 2060, while reducing the total amount of water diverted for irrigation. The societal relevance is probably most acute in the Global South, which is why many of our projects are located in Asia and Africa. Large reservoirs bring benefits to people in the form of flood control, water for irrigation and electricity products. However dams can also have adverse side effects on downstream ecosystems. With more optimal operation of dams floods can be reduced, energy and agricultural production can be maximized, navigation can be enabled and environmental damage can be minimized.

Monitoring and control research in the drinking water supply was concentrated around the development of a simulator of a drinking water treatment plant for operation and training purposes. Therefore integration of models and platforms was needed and new algorithms were developed to rapidly exchange information. In addition, models were developed for the prediction of drinking water use to operate the system energy efficient. New algorithms were made to identify pipe bursts in real time with limited data and adaptive calibration, taking into account accuracy of prediction and size of the burst in relation to size of the area.