Water distribution networks (WDNs) represent a class of critical infrastructure networks. When a disaster occurs, component failures in a WDN may trigger system failures that result in larger-scale reactions. The aim of the paper is to evaluate the evolution of system reliability and failure propagation time for a WDN experiencing cascading failures, and find the critical pipes which may reduce system reliability dramatically. Multiple factors are considered in the method such as network topology, the balance of water supply and demand, demand multiplier, and pipe break isolation. The pipe-based attack with multiple failure scenarios is simulated in the paper. A case WDN is used to illustrate the method. The results show that the lowest capacity gets stronger when a WDN is short of supply, becoming the dominant factor that decides the evolution of system reliability and failure propagation time. The valve ratio (VR) and system reliability present a flattened S curve relationship, and there are two turning points in VR. The critical pipes can be identified. With the fixed 5% valves, a WDN can improve system reliability and resist cascading failures effectively. The findings provide insights into the system reliability and failure propagation time for WDNs experiencing cascading failures. It is proven to be useful in future studies focused on the operation and management of water services.
Shuang, Q., Liu, Y., Tang, Y., Liu, J., & Shuang, K. (2017). System reliability evaluation in water distribution networks with the impact of valves experiencing cascading failures. Water (Switzerland), 9(6). https://doi.org/10.3390/w9060413