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10 E. CABRERA ET AL.

(8)

Where At=tank section area, z=level of water in the tank and Qi=incoming flow rate.
If the tank supplies water, the first term of the equation would be negative and the
second becomes an outcoming flow rate Qo.

An example of static boundary (or non dynamic) condition would be a valve opening
(being in this case autonomous) or a simply free discharge through a pipe burst, (non
autonomous).

Although the system characteristics have their own influence to select the model to be
applied for solving a given hydraulic problem, the characteristics of the boundary
conditions are, doubtlessly , the most important ones for the final choice of the model.

In fact, the more quickly the disturbance takes place, the bigger influence of the
elastic properties will have on the system response, falling into the domain of the elastic
model As the variations become smaller, the rigid model becomes sufficiently accurate
to use, so making it more convenient to use since requires less effort.

If finally, the variations of the boundary conditions are very small, the inertial effects
will become negligible being the quasi-static model the most convenient one because
we are able to get the final solution as a superposition of different steady states
corresponding to boundary conditions varying slowly in time.

Summarizing, it can be said that:

-The inertial and dynamic elastic model (colloquially known as water hammer) is
characterized by a system of partial differential equations (2) and, at least, a boundary
condition rapidly variable with time.

-The rigid inertial model (also denominated as lumped approach) is characterized by an


ordinary differential equation (6) and, at least, one boundary condition significantly
variable with time.

-The quasi-static model (widely used in extended period simulation, that gives name to
the model) is characterized by an algebraic equation in Q (7) and, at least, a boundary
condition slowly variable with time.

-The static model is characterized by an algebraic equation (7) and by stationary


boundary conditions.