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CP502  An Effective Large (100mm) Meter Replacement Strategy Metering
Project Appreciation and Objectives

50 to 150mm turbine type meters form a critical part of a water company's metering stock for non-household revenue, bulk metering and district meter applications. As these meters wear, their performance changes, particularly at low flow-rates, affecting accuracy, repeatability and starting flow.

Replacement on failure is no longer adequate as meters can operate for many years at poor performance levels, particularly at low flows. This has implications for the accuracy of nightlines, used for leakage estimation and targeting of leakage control activities, under-registration and revenue. Having a quantitative understanding of long term performance of this group of meters is now critical as their outputs are being used by increasingly sophisticated software to maintain and further reduce leakage and to manage distribution networks. Replacement therefore needs to be a balance between the change in performance and the cost of replacement - replacement too early leads to unnecessary costs balanced against replacement too late that leads to poor data, inaccurate nightlines and revenue losses.

This new project will help identify where that balance lies and looks in depth at one specific group of meters - the 100mm turbine meters - chosen for their importance in district and commercial metering. However, given that other meter sizes are geometrically similar, results should be scalable using a suitable flow-related factor which will be identified. The primary objective of this work is to gain evidence on how key performance attributes - accuracy, repeatability and starting flows - change as meters age to help plan replacement strategies.

Business Benefits to Clients

  • Cost effective meter replacement for medium sized (50-150mm) meters
  • Maintenance of performance for nightlines to improve leakage management
  • Protection of revenues
  • Reduced non-household meter under-registration
  • Improved data for sophisticated network analysis tools.
  • Work Programme

    1. Participant companies will supply an agreed sample of meters.
    2. Meters will be tested across their operating range.
    3. WRc will supplement these results with additional data from its test database.
    4. Identify a suitable scaling factor by comparing results with test data from WRc's database for other meter sizes.
    5. Analysis of results for trends and reporting with recommendations and guidance on replacement strategies.

    Project Output and Implementation.

    • Full technical report including all test data and analysis with recommendations and guidance.
    • Electronic database of 100mm meter test results that can be used to cross check their own meter stock when developing replacement strategies.

    Related WRc Work

    • CP324 Long term performance of domestic meters (2008)
    • CP360 Commercial meter under-registration (2010)
    • CP461 District and commercial meters - the new generation (2012)

    WRc's Portfolio Programme
    Summary of the £1.5 million per annum research programme

    More details...

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