Development of a TFR-Based Method for the Simultaneous Detection of Leakage and Partial Blockage in Water Supply Pipelines

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17 Citations (Scopus)


Pipe leakage and partial blockage are the two common types of pipe defects in water supply systems. In practical systems, these defects, which may cause great waste of water and energy resources and can induce potential reduction of system operation capacity, are usually formed simultaneously. This paper develops an effective transient frequency response (TFR)-based method to characterize and detect simultaneously these two types of pipe defects. To this end, an analytical expression is first derived to characterize the simultaneous effect of leakage and partial blockage on TFR in water pipelines. The obtained results are then validated through laboratory experimental tests for the detection of multiple pipe defects. After validation, extensive numerical applications that cover typical ranges of test conditions are adopted to further investigate the applicability and accuracy of the developed TFR-based method. The application results demonstrate high accuracy and wide applicability of this TFR-based method to detect simultaneously potential leakage and partial blockage in water supply pipelines. The advantages and limitations of this TFR-based method are discussed in the final section for practical applications in urban water supply systems.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1764
JournalJournal of Hydraulic Engineering
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2020


  • Blockage
  • Detection
  • Leakage
  • Transient frequency response (TFR)
  • Water pipeline

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Mechanical Engineering


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