Sensing Events Affecting Liquid Flow in a Liquid Distribution System

TitleSensing Events Affecting Liquid Flow in a Liquid Distribution System
Publication TypePatents
Year of Publication2010
AuthorsPatel SN, Fogarty JA, Froehlich J, Larson EC
Date Published2010
AssigneeUniversity of Washington

By monitoring pressure transients in a liquid within a liquid distribution system using only a single sensor, events such as the opening and closing of valves at specific fixtures are readily detected. The sensor, which can readily be coupled to a faucet bib, transmits an output signal to a computing device. Each such event can be identified by the device based by comparing characteristic features of the pressure transient waveform with previously observed characteristic features for events in the system. These characteristic features, which can include the varying pressure, derivative, and real Cepstrum of the pressure transient waveform, can be used to select a specific fixture where a valve open or close event has occurred. Flow to each fixture and leaks in the system can also be determined from the pressure transient signal. A second sensor disposed at a point disparate from the first sensor provides further event information.