Impact of self-cleansing criteria choice on the optimal design of sewer networks in South America

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This paper aims to analyze different sediment self-cleansing criteria and to find out what the corresponding implications are on the optimal design of sewer systems. A methodology based on enumeration is used to find the sewer network design that minimizes the costs of construction while fulfilling a number of design criteria including self-cleansing constraints. Three stormwater and wastewater sewer networks are used for the analyses. The results indicate that in cases where the terrain slopes and design flow rates are higher, the self-cleansing restrictions are irrelevant to the optimal design. However, when the terrain slopes and the design flow rates are lower, these restrictions affect the final design. Using the results obtained, a graph is constructed showing the limit at which self-cleansing restrictions become a constraining parameter in optimal design for sewer networks. It is expected that this graph will be useful for the design of future sewer networks in low-income areas, where the design of traditional, gravity-based sewer systems is essential.