A virtual pipe rig for testing acoustic leak detection correlators: Proof of concept

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Brennan, M. J. [UNESP]
Kroll De Lima, F. [UNESP]
De Almeida, F. C.L. [UNESP]
Joseph, P. F.
Paschoalini, A. T. [UNESP]

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Acoustic correlators have been used for many years to locate and detect leaks in buried water distribution pipes. Currently, the only way to compare different correlators directly is in the field. This can be problematic as it may be difficult to present exactly the same conditions to each correlator. In recent years, the way in which leak noise propagates in buried water pipes has been determined, and this has enabled the development of a virtual pipe whose behaviour can be simulated in the computer. By coupling the filtering properties of the pipe with electrodynamic shakers, a proof-of-concept virtual pipe test-rig has been developed that will allow different correlators to be compared directly in laboratory conditions. Different situations, such as pipe material and size, and measurement positions, as well as leak strength can be simulated. The theoretical basis of the test-rig and details of the proof-of-concept system are discussed in this paper. It is shown that careful consideration of the dynamics of the shakers is vital if the system is to faithfully model situations that are found in the field.



Correlation, Pipe vibration, Water leaks

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Applied Acoustics, v. 102, p. 137-145.