60 seconds with...Femke Verhaart, Deltares

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60 seconds with...Femke Verhaart, Deltares

Femke Verhaart

Femke Verhaart

Deltares' Hydraulic Expert shares her views on the challenges facing engineers carrying out CFD and simulations in the water industry ahead of her presentation at the Institution's technical seminar.

Please briefly explain your role, involvement, and experience with hydraulic modelling and the water industry

Femke Verhaart (FV):  I’m involved in the hydraulic design of pumping stations (intakes) and (pressurised) pipeline systems for applications ranging from wastewater systems and drinking water systems to cooling water and irrigation systems. As Deltares we are asked as hydraulic design experts for the non-standard systems and the renovation of old systems. My work varies from expert advise via numerical modelling (mainly water hammer studies and interpretation of CFD studies) to physical model testing and field measurements.

What is the top challenge facing your industry at present?

FV:  I see two main challenges:

How would you say your industry has evolved over the past five years?

FV:  In the wastewater industry people more and more realise that their systems are deteriorating and reach the end of their theoretical lifetime, while the systems are in fact forgotten or at least neglected in the last 20 years. There becomes awareness that specs and design documents are lost over the years and that action is now really required.

What developments are going on in your industry that may have an impact on the development of future approaches to the use of modelling?

FV:  Hydraulic modelling will more and more be used to obtain insight in the current status of a system and the remaining possibilities of a system instead of a design tool.

What will you be presenting at the ‘Hydraulic Modelling’ seminar and how will this benefit participants?

FV:  I will present our experiences in hydraulic modelling. I will focus on our experiences in the wastewater sector. On the one hand, I will present knowledge obtained in research projects. Among others, I will focus on the effect of air in pressurised pipelines. When will this be a problem? How could it be avoided? On the other hand I will provide tips and tricks for hydraulic modelling of challenging aspects such as air entrainment.

Which other speakers and presentations are you looking forward to hearing at the forthcoming seminar?

FV:  I like to hear stories on practical situations. How are challenging projects assessed? What lessons could be learned?

Why is it important for engineers and industry to come together at this event and share best practice?

FV:  The best way to make steps forward and to work effective is to learn from each other. We could only learn from each other when we meet each other.

The Hydraulic Modelling for the Water Industry seminar will take place on 19 June 2023 at the Severn Trent Academy in Coventry.

Attend to learn about recent and ongoing projects taking place within the water and wastewater industries and how new technologies are contributing to new developments in risk management and energy storage, as well increases in energy efficiency, waste reduction and maintaining the supply and quality of drinking water.