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[Group 04] Maintaining London Water Supplies

The Group Design Projects are an educational exercise and the projects undertaken and designs developed during them should not be reported as representative of projects undertaken by or designs developed by the Supporters.

Week 4

posted 16 Jun 2012, 14:22 by Group Design Projects Imperial

And so came the rain…Thames Water lifted the hose pipe ban. The Task Force had the additional task of convincing ourselves that our brief was still relevant. Taking into account the projections our team had made with regards to climate change and population increase, London would definitely have a water shortage, surely, right? Uncertainty was the key word for the project, as affirmed by our supervisor.

This final week was about trawling through all the research that had been done over the past month in order to put together our final solution for the client. After spreadsheets, graphs and a lot of statistics it was time to do what we do best – engineering. This involved coming up with construction sequences, geotechnics and flow rates – suddenly we powered through with the knowledge that had been gathering over the years with a bit of help from Kanye, Jay-Z and the Miami Dolphins’ cheerleaders. CAD obsession has taken hold over the team: they will provide great visuals for the final presentation along with the brilliance from our Matlab lovers in the team also.

The last critical session was a great success and we really feel we have bonded with the clients during this project. If that wasn’t enough to bring the week to a great end, the sun came out! Ice creams all round (call me maybe)! So the big question is: How do you make a pipe exciting and creative? Well, you will just have to wait and see next week, see us at the poster event!

Week 3

posted 9 Jun 2012, 05:53 by Group Design Projects Imperial

Wish we could put up some pretty pictures but the only ones that we could provide are screen shots of excel sheets, and you probably don’t want to see them! (They’ll be in our appendix). Thanks to the Queen, we were given an extra bank holiday but who would then quench the thirst of London? So the Task Force was in on the Tuesday number crunching away, whilst the Queen tucked into some Victoria sponge cake!

Apart from learning the geography of the British Isles when routing pipelines and watercourses; we had the joy of attempting to predict the future: one subteam came back with the weather forecasts all the way up to 2080 (watch out Michael Fish!). When Google failed us it was time to hit the old-school paper reports; after a wild goose chase around London we ended up at an Imperial College office where we hit the jackpot (yes, reports do delight us) and we had our hands on a bunch of reports on Thames Water’s secret methods in using statistics to estimate demand and supply of water.

Our innovation for this week was the AMR, (soon to be patented by the Task Force), a robot that could effectively solve the drought crisis and maybe even cause flood risks in London!!! That’s efficiency for you! It turns out that leakage in London could actually be contributing immensely to the low reservoir levels.

Did you hear? Central Line was flooded this week due to burst pipes and East London had no water for a while, just shows how hot this topic is. The week ended with a very successful critical session to the clients, where we have established a game plan for the final stretch. The Task Force will soldier on!

Week 2

posted 2 Jun 2012, 09:03 by Group Design Projects Imperial

This week saw Hydroline Task Force (that’s right we have a name!) go online on the twittersphere…and boy have we been shouting about us on the world wide web…so follow us @Hydroline_TF !

A lot of things happened in our second week: we saw some bromance develop amongst a couple of the team members, Mac&Tyre logo creations (you’ll get it eventually) and the potential use of Robots in our solution. Three presentations in one week really took its toll on the team… but luckily our incredibly inspiring PM, boosted the team spirit with four chocolate muffins to share amongst the nine of us (you do the maths). 

We began with a critical session involving the client, where we ‘exceeded expectations’, think the incomprehensible numbers being spat out by our team really impressed them. This positive start had us pumped for the development presentation to the rest of the year the next day, where once again the Task Force was well smart, the head himself, Prof Buenfeld, gave us a great compliment (hope the peer assessments are just as amazing!).

Midweek saw a dip in drive and along came the clouds, rain had us questioning: is London really in a drought? What happened to the glorious sunshine?! But no, the statisticians of the team convinced the doubting Thomas’s that reservoir levels were indeed low and a bit of drizzle wasn’t going to solve our brief. 
As we get more and more engrossed in the project, radical ideas keep popping up including shall we relocate the population of London? And so what if we take Bristol’s water? With Nandos Thursdays, Brown Tuesdays and other socials to be scheduled by our new events officer there is a lot of love between the group and we can’t wait for the next week!

Week 1

posted 30 May 2012, 15:08 by Group Design Projects Imperial

Yes we are the team with someone building a model ship…all will be revealed in our presentation scheduled for Tuesday (or so he claims).

London is running out of water, and having the Olympics just around the corner really does not help the case; as future engineers, the team has been called in to bring water to the capital both to solve the crisis at hand with a short term solution and provide a solution to eventually maintain water levels in the long run.
Shortage numbers were being quoted in the realms of giga litres and billions of cubic meters, making it difficult to really understand what we were dealing with here. At one point the words ‘’this is impossible’’ may have been spoken and we sat in awe trying to comprehend the huge task we had been handed. It wasn’t just a case of dumping a few tankers full of water into reservoirs, in which case our report would be just a page long.


Crazy ideas were being thrown about, in order to find some innovative ways, including sprinkling silver iodide into clouds, towing icebergs, moving mountains, relocating Londoners and did you know 85% of human blood is made up of water (something to think about).

H2O has taken over our thoughts and at the end of the first week we may indeed be in love with water, with members speeding through brushing their teeth in the mornings in order to reduce water consumption, but whether this passion will continue in the weeks to come…only time will tell.

With a drought imminent in 60 odd days, it is up to team (yet to be named) to come up with a plan to quench the thirst of Londoners quick…bring it on!

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