Response Surfaces for Water Distribution System Pipe Roughness Calibration

Sanghoon Jun, Georg Arbesser-Rastburg, Daniela Fuchs-Hanusch, Kevin Lansey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Water distribution system (WDS) model calibration research has focused on estimating model input/output parameters and analyzing several uncertainties (e.g., model uncertainty) to improve models with best-fit parameters. Numerous studies have shown that optimization algorithms generally quickly converge to very good parameter solutions. However, the generality and reasoning behind this have not been identified. This paper examines the shape and convexity of WDS response surfaces (i.e., objective function surfaces) and whether the surfaces have single global or multiple local optima. To that end, three networks with different network topologies are evaluated: (1) the Modena network as presented, (2) a modified form of the Modena network, and (3) a real Austrian network. Various conditions were evaluated to consider field measurement error, parameter uncertainty through pipe grouping, and model uncertainty. Results demonstrate that the response surfaces remained smooth and convex even when uncertainties are introduced, but the best parameter solutions are shifted from the true solution. The impact and sensitivities of the uncertainties are evaluated by examining the change in best-fit parameter estimates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number04021105
JournalJournal of Water Resources Planning and Management
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Fitness landscape
  • Hydraulic modeling
  • Sensitivity analysis
  • Uncertainties

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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