Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

DayWater prototype of stand alone vulnerability screening tools

One of the negative effects of urbanization is the overloading of the city sewer system. To solve this problem, on-site storm water infiltration proves very promising due to its near natural characteristics and multiple effects on the drainage of stormwater runoff in urban areas. However, the judgment of whether a local area is appropriate to be drained in this way and which infiltration measures are optimal is rather complex and involves analyzing a set of influential factors. This judgment depends on not only relevant theoretical considerations, but also a large amount of practical experience and the availability of relevant data, as well. Such a judgment is an unstructured problem and relates to changeable knowledge.

To fulfil this task, a so-called expert system, or knowledge-based system, is a possible tool. One of the advantages of an expert system is that it provides automation of expert-level judgment. This is extremely helpful when an expert-level judgment is needed repeatedly for a large amount of cases, like in the planning of on-site stormwater infiltration systems for an entire city or a river catchment.

Within DAYWATER an expert system tool called FLEXT was developed and applied within the Wupper case study, Germany. Compared with other expert systems the combination with a Geographical Information System (GIS) is new.

FLEXT can be used as a vulnerability screening tool as well as a tool for developing scenarios. Both possible applications are major tasks of river basin management, which is becoming more and more important due to the European Water Framework Directive.

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