Research & innovation priorities

UWMH works on new disruptive technologies and options able to change the way we think about the water cycle and its link to energy and materials within the regional and urban environment.

Smart and resilient water and water-energy infrastructure

 
DIGITALISATION IS A CHERISHED ALLOY OF OPPORTUNITIES AND PERILS

which forge the future of our societies, and holds a predominant role in our work, as a force that reshapes the water sector and water-energy nexus elements at their core, pushes the boundaries of traditional system designs and challenges the security and resilience of our infrastructures. Re-thinking water and water-energy infrastructures under a combined cyber-physical system (CPS) paradigm lays at the core of the digital transformation principles that guide our developments, notably ingrained on the system modelling tools and decision support platforms.

In view of the diverse and boundless field of resilient smart infrastructures, we build upon:

  • robust communication protocols and data structures (e.g. FIWARE),
  • advanced analytics for real-time and fine-scale data,
  • Agent-based modelling approaches to render real-life behaviours (incl. cyber-attacks and target selection) and
  • state-of-art paradigms from the domains of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning,

This broad-spectrum of capabilities are put to use for diverse resilience questions such as pressures and impacts of climate change, ageing infrastructures, non-revenue water, energy and climate neutrality as well as those of security and cyber-physical resilience of the critical infrastructures (CI) in the dawn of Industry 4.0, but also help pave the road towards the “holy grail” of a Digital Twin approach for the water sector.

Through adaptive smart water network modelling approaches that integrate hydraulic modelling, remote real-time control and information and communication technologies (ICT), we render complex mechanisms, bring down information silos and allow the in-depth understanding of cyber-physical designs, their capabilities and limitations.

Of special interest to our research is the investigation of design vulnerabilities, modelling of the opportunistic behaviour in target selection and the identification of critical assets (both tangible and intangible), the detection of optimal design configurations (incl. sensor placement), the stress-testing of the system under different scenarios, which may or may not come to pass, and the evaluation of its resilience against explicit Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

Usability, visualisation, and operationalisation of smart applications are not neglected, for there is tight integration to an all-in-one solution which standardises procedures to minimize user-errors, allows interdepartmental communication and empowers management with actionable key information to better prepare the organization for whatever the future brings.

RELEVANT PUBLICATIONS
  • Kossieris, P., Kozanis, S., Hashmi, A., Katsiri, E., Vamvakeridou-Lyroudia, L.S., Farmani, R., Makropoulos, C., Savic, D., 2014. A Web-based Platform for Water Efficient Households. Procedia Eng. 89, 1128–1135. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.proeng.2014.11.234
  • Kossieris, P., Tsoukalas, I., Makropoulos, C., Savic, D., 2019. Simulating Marginal and Dependence Behaviour of Water Demand Processes at Any Fine Time Scale. Water 11, 885. https://doi.org/10.3390/w11050885
  • Makropoulos, C., Nikolopoulos, D., Palmen, L., Kools, S., Segrave, A., Vries, D., Koop, S., van Alphen, H.J., Vonk, E., van Thienen, P., Rozos, E., Medema, G., 2018. A resilience assessment method for urban water systems. Urban Water J. 15, 316–328. https://doi.org/10.1080/1573062X.2018.1457166
  • Moraitis, G., Nikolopoulos, D., Bouziotas, D., Lykou, A., Karavokiros, G., Makropoulos, C., 2020. Quantifying Failure for Critical Water Infrastructures under Cyber-Physical Threats. J. Environ. Eng. 146, 04020108. https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)EE.1943-7870.0001765
  • Moraitis, G., Nikolopoulos, D., Koutiva, I., Tsoukalas, I., Karavokyros, G., Makropoulos, C., 2021. The PROCRUSTES testbed: tackling cyber-physical risk for water systems, in: EGU General Assembly 2021. pp. EGU21-14903. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu21-14903
  • Nikolopoulos, D., Makropoulos, C., Kalogeras, D., Monokrousou, K., Tsoukalas, I., 2018. Developing a Stress-Testing Platform for Cyber-Physical Water Infrastructure, in: 2018 International Workshop on Cyber-Physical Systems for Smart Water Networks (CySWater). IEEE, pp. 9–11. https://doi.org/10.1109/CySWater.2018.00009
  • Nikolopoulos, D., Moraitis, G., Bouziotas, D., Lykou, A., Karavokiros, G., Makropoulos, C., 2020. RISKNOUGHT: Stress-testing platform for cyber-physical water distribution networks HS5.2.3-Water resources policy and management: digital water and interconnected urban infrastructure. https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-19647
  • Nikolopoulos, D., Moraitis, G., Makropoulos, C., 2021a. 7. Strategic and Tactical Cyber-Physical Security for Critical Water Infrastructures, in: Cyber-Physical Threat Intelligence for Critical Infrastructures Security: Securing Critical Infrastructures in Air Transport, Water, Gas, Healthcare, Finance and Industry. Now Publishers. https://doi.org/10.1561/9781680838237.ch7
  • Nikolopoulos, D., Ostfeld, A., Salomons, E., Makropoulos, C., 2021b. Resilience Assessment of Water Quality Sensor Designs under Cyber-Physical Attacks. Water 13, 647. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13050647
  • Nikolopoulos, D., van Alphen, H.-J., Vries, D., Palmen, L., Koop, S., van Thienen, P., Medema, G., Makropoulos, C., 2019. Tackling the “New Normal”: A Resilience Assessment Method Applied to Real-World Urban Water Systems. Water 11, 330. https://doi.org/10.3390/w11020330
  • Pelekanos, N., Nikolopoulos, D., Makropoulos, C., 2021. Simulation and vulnerability assessment of water distribution networks under deliberate contamination attacks. Urban Water J. 18, 209–222. https://doi.org/10.1080/1573062X.2020.1864832
  • Stewart, R.A., Nguyen, K., Beal, C., Zhang, H., Sahin, O., Bertone, E., Vieira, A.S., Castelletti, A., Cominola, A., Giuliani, M., Giurco, D., Blumenstein, M., Turner, A., Liu, A., Kenway, S., Savić, D.A., Makropoulos, C., Kossieris, P., 2018. Integrated intelligent water-energy metering systems and informatics: Visioning a digital multi-utility service provider. Environ. Model. Softw. 105, 94–117. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsoft.2018.03.006
  • Tsiami, L., Makropoulos, C., 2021. Cyber—Physical Attack Detection in Water Distribution Systems with Temporal Graph Convolutional Neural Networks. Water 13, 1247. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13091247
  • Ugarelli, R., Koti, J., Bonet, E., Makropoulos, C., Caubet, J., 2018. STOP-IT – Strategic , Tactical , Operational Protection of water Infrastructure against cyber- physical Threats, in: La Loggia, G., Freni, G., Puleo, V., Mauro, D.M. (Eds.), HIC 2018. 13th International Conference on Hydroinformatics. EasyChair, Manchester, pp. 2112–2119.

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