Water resources systems simulation & optimisation

The University of Manchester’s Department of Mechanical, Aerospance and Civil Engineering (MACE) is leading the FutureDAMS water resources systems simulation and optimisation. The team is developing a decision-making framework and online integrated assessment toolset with the aim to help plan and design better infrastructure in complex natural resource systems, with a focus on developing countries.

 

Water resources research

  Title/downloadSummary
10/2020Journal articleBalancing services from built and natural assets via river basin trade off analysisThis paper demonstrates the value and use of optimised many-objective trade-off analysis for managing resource-systems providing diverse and sometimes competing services, using Kenya’s Tana River basin for demonstration.
03/2020Journal articleFilling Africa’s Largest Hydropower Dam Should Consider Engineering RealitiesResearch pointing out that some negotiated strategies for filling the GERD dam could be infeasible in critical river flow conditions due to the limited ability of the dam to release water at low water levels.
10/2020Journal articleEfficient and robust hydropower system design under uncertainty - A demonstration in NepalThis paper proposes a novel multi-method decision-making under deep uncertainty approach to hydropower system design.
07/2019Journal articleSpatial and sectoral benefit distribution in water-energy system designThis paper presents a framework to couple integrated water-power network simulators with multi-objective optimisation under uncertainty to explore the implications of explicitly including spatial topology and interdependencies in the design of multi-sector integrated systems.
06/2020Journal articleAssessing river basin development given water-energy-food-environment interdependenciesThe application of a multisector spatial computer‐aided design approach to the Rufiji river basin in Tanzania considering linkages across the water‐energy‐food‐environment sectors.
03/2020Journal articleWater at COP25: Resilience enables climate change adaptation through better planning, governance and financeA brief review of reports relevant to water management published in the run-up to COP25, and a summary of overarching themes discussed during the event.
02/2020Journal articleWhat do economic water storage valuations reveal about optimal vs. historical water management?This paper compares valuations for California's Central Valley revealing that carryover storage values derived from historical operations are typically greater than prescribed values.
01/2020Journal articleA water resource simulator in PythonA new generalised water resource network modelling Python library, Pywr, is presented.
12/2019Journal articleDecision-Dependent Uncertainty in Adaptive Real-Options Water Resource PlanningWe formulate a multistage real-options water supply capacity expansion optimization model incorporating uncertainty and describe its effect on cost and option selection.
12/2019Journal articleAn open-source data manager for network modelsWe present a data storage platform, written in Python, which exploits the commonality of network representations to store data for multiple model types within a single deployment.
08/2019Journal articleReservoir system expansion scheduling under conflicting interestsThis work proposes a many objective approach where a schedule of new dams is optimised along-side dam selections and operating rules
10/2018Journal articleEstimating the Economic Value of Interannual Reservoir Storage in Water Resource SystemsThis paper examines how the economic valuation of end‐of‐year carryover storage can lead to optimal amounts of carryover storage in complex large water resource systems.
06/2018Journal articleReal-Options Water Supply Planning: Multistage Scenario Trees for Adaptive and Flexible Capacity Expansion Under Probabilistic Climate Change UncertaintyWe apply a model to a real‐world utility with many investment decision stages using a generalized scenario tree construction algorithm to efficiently approximate probabilistic uncertainty.
05/2018Journal articleA python framework for multi-agent simulation of networked resource systemsWe propose the Python Network Simulation (Pynsim) Framework, an open-source library for building simulation models of networked systems.

Research update video

This video was produced for the FutureDAMS annual forum (November 2020) as a summary of the team’s current research progress.

https://youtu.be/A-ZIApHi01o

River basins and energy systems – what synergies are possible and how can they be discovered?

Traditionally planners considered the effects of water and energy systems on the other in simplified ways or not at all. This has often led to inefficient use of resources and a somewhat arbitrary allocation of benefits and costs across sectors and geographic regions....

Filling Africa’s largest dam risks political tension if engineering realities are ignored

A hydro dam currently under construction in Ethiopa is set to be the largest hydropower plant in Africa, but could be heading towards controversy for international agreements on water sharing. New research from FutureDAMS points out that some negotiated strategies for...

Video: New approaches for managing water under regional resource conflicts

Watch Julien Harou's FutureDAMS presentation 'New approaches for managing water under regional resource conflicts'.  The webinar was part of the ‘Water Research at Manchester - Water and Sustainable Development’ event convened by Manchester Environmental Research...

Stakeholders should get a fair share of benefits from inter-connected water-energy systems

By Julien Harou, Mathaios Panteli, Jose Gonzalez Cabrera, Gloria Salmoral and Rose Sumner. Traditionally planners considered the effects of water and energy systems on the other in simplified ways or not at all. This has often led to inefficient use of resources and a...

Resilience shift: ‘Seeing the bigger picture – the water-energy nexus’

Read the Resilience Shift blog 'Seeing the bigger picture - the water-energy nexus' by FutureDAMS researchers Mathaios Panteli, Eduardo Alejandro Martínez Ceseña and Julien Harou. The authors discuss the opportunities and challenges in jointly planning and developing...

Water management for climate change adaptation: emerging trends and new research

Water at COP25: Resilience enables climate change adaptation FutureDAMS' researchers Julien Harou, Judith Plummer Braeckmann and Sanna Markkanen presented at COP25 (Madrid, December 2019). Reflecting on their experience, they have contributed to the latest Institute...

5th Batch of Young Water Professionals (1st Batch of Myanmar Water Academy) training: Myanmar

During the second week of January 2020, Professor Aung Ze Ya of Yangon Technological University (Ministry of Education, Myanmar) delivered a three-day workshop to the 5th batch of young water professionals (YWP), which is also the 1st batch of the Myanmar Water...

Understanding how the FutureDAMS modelling and visualisation interface can support Kenya’s Water Resources Authority

3-day workshop, December 2019, Nairobi, Kenya FutureDAMS is co-developing a state-of-the-art online integrated assessment modelling toolset for assessing and optimising water-energy-food-environment system designs. Anthony Hurford travelled to Nairobi to deliver a...

FutureDAMS at COP25

Members of the FutureDAMS consortium were active at COP25 in Madrid, running two events. ‘Building Better Dams: the Past, Present and Future of Hydropower’ UK Pavilion, 4 December This event was convened by the Centre for Sustainable Finance, University of Cambridge...

Podcast: Innovative data manager for network models with Steve Knox

Welcome to the first FutureDAMS podcast. In this episode Stephen Knox discusses his latest paper which presents an innovative data manager developed by FutureDAMS researchers, which supports models for resource networks like water or energy. Steve is the software...

UN Climate Change Conference COP 25

FutureDAMS presented two sessions at this year's UN Climate Change Conference COP 25 (Madrid, 2 - 13 December 2019). Search for #FutureDAMS on Twitter for live coverage of the events. Building Better Dams: the Past, Present and Future of Hydropower Wednesday 4...

FutureDAMS at World Water Week

World Water Week, Stockholm, 25-30 August 2019 Julien Harou and Anthony Hurford attended Stockholm World Water Week to present FutureDAMS research. The theme for 2019 was Water for Society: Including all, which drew attention to broad solutions to humanity's major...

Watch: Prof Julien Harou at the Geneva Water Hub

Professor Julien Harou was recently invite to give a 15 minute talk at the Geneva Water Hub. The Water Talks series is an open-speech opportunity for researchers to expose and explain their ideas, their stances on contemporary challenges linked to water governance....

New research demonstrates updating dam operating rules could save billions

New open access research by The University of Manchester’s Robel Geressu and Julien Harou shows that if dam re-operation is considered in planning systems of dams, future designs of these costly water-energy-food systems can be drastically improved. They were able to...

WWF and TNC advocate for FutureDAMS style trade-off analysis

‘Connected and Flowing’, the recent report by WWF and The Nature Conservancy was co-authored by FutureDAMS research director, Julien Harou. It recommends that any new dams should be subject to a system scale trade-off analysis, of the type that FutureDAMS is...

Workshop with the Kenyan Water Resources Authority

By Anthony Hurford On 8 May I travelled to Embu in Kenya to conduct training for Water Resources Authority (WRA) staff on the benefits of water resources system simulation modelling within a browser-based interface. Partners from Jomo Kenyatta University of...

Watch: Prof Julien Harou on how to improve dam decision making

This autumn at UNESCO in Paris the International Hydropower Association held a meeting entitled ‘Improving decision-making for hydropower’. FutureDAMS Research Director Julien Harou was an invited speaker and gave the following 10 minute presentation on the...

What’s the economic value of water stored in dams? New open access research

Researchers at the University of Manchester have developed a systems modelling approach which determines how much water managers should store across complex constellations of dams. The approach could save California alone over $100 million annually.   FutureDAMS...