Energy-saving measures in water supply and distribution systems can be realized in many ways from field testing and proper maintenance of equipment to the use of optimal computer control. Energy usage can be reduced by decreasing the volume of water pumped (e.g., adjusting pressure zone boundaries), the head against which it is pumped (e.g., optimizing tank water level range), or the cost of energy (e.g., avoid peak hour pumping and make effective use of storage tanks such as filling them during off-peak periods and draining them during peak periods), and increasing the efficiency of pumps (e.g., ensuring that pumps are operating near their best efficiency point). Utilities can further reduce energy costs by implementing on-line telemetry and control systems (SCADA), and by managing their energy consumption more effectively and improving overall operations using optimized pumping operations and reservoir control.

The Scheduler is designed to assist water distribution system operators and training new operators in selecting cost-effective pumping policies to reduce operational costs and provide more reliable operations. The program makes use of the latest advances in the Genetic Algorithm optimization technology with sophisticated Elitist and Global Search Control strategies to automatically determine the optimal pump operation policy for each pump station in the water distribution system. The goal is to pinpoint the scheduling that best meets target hydraulic and water quality performance requirements at maximum cost savings. The operation policy for a pump station represents a set of temporal rules or guidelines (pump operating times) that indicate when a particular pump or group of pumps should be turned on and off over a specified period of time (typically 24 hours). The optimal pump policy is the schedule of pump operations that will yield the lowest operating cost while satisfying the desired hydraulic operational requirements of the system. These requirements prescribe lower and upper limits on system pressures, tank and water quality levels, maximum pipe velocities, maximum pumped flows or volumes, alternative supply sources, and other system constraints aimed at ensuring safe, reliable operations. Both energy consumption ($/kWh) and demand charges ($/max kW) are explicitly considered.

An invaluable water distribution planning and operational tool, the Scheduler lets you improve the operational efficiency of your water distribution systems, evaluate various rate schedules, optimize storage/pumping trade-offs, and assure more reliable and safer operations. You now have the tool to help you produce the best possible pumping schedules with a minimum effort and at significant cost-savings.