Methodology for improving pump operation efficiency

Lindell E. Ormsbee, Thomas M. Walski, Donald V. Chase, Wayne W. Sharp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


A methodology to optimize the operation of water supply pumps is developed for use in minimizing pump operation costs. The developed methodology is directly applicable to complete water distribution systems or isolated pressure zones with a single dominant storage facility and multiple pump stations. The optimal pump operation methodology involves two basic phases: the development of an optimal tank trajectory, and the development of an optimal pump operating policy to achieve the optimal trajectory. The optimal trajectory is determined using dynamic programming while the associated pump policy is determined using an explicit enumeration scheme. In order to test the applicability of the developed methodology it was applied to the third high pressure zone of the Washington D.C. water system. To examine the impact of a variable electric rate schedule and a variable system demand schedule on the resulting optimal pump policy, the methodology was applied to four different representative days. Annual energy usage cost savings of approximately 6.7% were projected.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-164
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Water Resources Planning and Management
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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