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Journal of the South African Institution of Civil Engineering

On-line version ISSN 2309-8775
Print version ISSN 1021-2019


MULLER, A L; GERICKE, O J  and  PIETERSEN, J P J. Methodological approach for the compilation of a water distribution network model using QGIS and EPANET. J. S. Afr. Inst. Civ. Eng. [online]. 2020, vol.62, n.4, pp.32-43. ISSN 2309-8775.

This paper presents the development of a methodological approach based on the integration of free-of-charge open-source software, e.g. QGIS and EPANET, and engineering practices applicable to water distribution network design. The use of QGIS and EPANET, as well as the integration thereof with sound engineering practices and judgement, proved to be both viable and practical to enable practitioners to create a water distribution network model of an existing network in smaller developments or towns. Typically, in the latter smaller developments or towns, the professional cost associated with the additional time required when commercial licensed software is used, could be lower than the actual cost associated with the procurement of the licensed software itself. Hence, the developed process flow diagrams will not only potentially save time and money in comparison to a traditional, manual approach in EPANET, but will also provide guidance to practitioners and assist smaller municipalities in southern Africa facing challenges in terms of outdated records and budget constraints. It is envisaged that the implementation of the overall methodology will contribute to improved water infrastructure planning, design and management, especially in the southern African context where water resources are scarce and service delivery remains a pressing issue.

Keywords : EPANET; GHydraulics; GIS; QGIS; Voronoi polygons; water ‑distribution network.

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