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Issues to be explored include:

We want to assign a Likelihood of Failure score to each pipe to prioritize our next projects. 

  • What are our options? What do advanced analytics -including Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning- achieve that a utility’s in-house scoring approach does not? (#2 and #3- to be published September 14 and September 21, 2022) 

  • Can we trust results from a black box?

  • Can we use results from the Physical Condition Assessment of a portion of our system, and extrapolate to the whole system?

  • We are a small utility. We have little data. Can we also benefit from advanced analytics?

We want to assess Long-term Rehabilitation & Replacement (R&R) needs.

  • What’s wrong with using generic Effective Useful Lives to determine long-term R&R needs?

  • How do we estimate the Likelihood of Failure of pipes in the future, and leverage those results to optimize our long-term R&R plan?

  • Our board set a 1% R&R objective. Will it be enough to control our break rate? Could we do less for a few years? (#1 - to be published September 7, 2022) 

We know that the quality of analytical results, such as breaks predictions, depends on the quality of the data.

  • Which data is needed?

  • What are the typical issues with data and what can be done to improve data quality?

  • Is there more to data cleaning than filling data gaps and flagging incoherent values?

  • Data quality matters; what about quantity?

  • What analytical alternative do we have if we do not have the data (yet), or are a small utility?

How does our utility compare with others?

How much do the approaches described in the series cost?