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System Identification of Irrigation Channels with Overshot and Undershot Gates (Civil Project)

Water resources in Australia are limited. For a farmer the access to water is crucial and due to the dry climate the farmers in Australia can not rely on precipitation. Irrigation is therefore a very important part of the farming industry.

The Coleambally Irrigation Area is situated in the southern parts of New South Wales close to the border of Victoria. The Irrigation Network often supplies the irrigation channels with too much water to be sure that the demand of water is satisfied. Due to this over supply a great amount of water gets wasted. Design of a better control system would be able to reduce the water wastage.

A mathematical model describing the dynamics of the irrigation system can be used as a tool for the control system design. The aim of this project was to build a mathematical model with the system identification approach.

The model should be able to describe the downstream water level of a single pool of an irrigation channel which has both undershot and overshot gates. A model was built by estimating unknown parameters of a chosen model structure from a set of experimental data. The data was collected from an experiment performed on the real irrigation system in Coleambally.

The result of the system identification was a first order output error grey box model. The model performs well on validation data and may therefore be used for design of a more efficient control system. The model gave such good results that it additionally may be used for various simulation purposes.
Source: Uppsala University
Author: Euren, Karin

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