Water Distribution

Oral

394935 - Modeling Drinking Water Lead Exposure from Premise Plumbing

Thursday, June 7
8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Location: Lakeshore C
Co-Authors: Hyoungmin Woo, Cincinnati OH – Pegasus; James Mason, Cincinnati OH – ORAU; Regan Murray, Cincinnati OH – US Environmental Protection Agency

Exposure to drinking water contaminants, specifically lead, remains an important health concern. Modeling lead release within home plumbing systems includes quantifying the dissolution of lead into the water from all lead sources, and the transport of that lead through the pipes/appliances to the points of water use (e.g., faucets). An appropriate chemical reaction model, accurate mapping of plumbing materials/sizes/configurations within a plumbing system, and unique water demand patterns in the home must be incorporated in a modeling effort. Each water use event in the demand pattern drives flow in the system and moves varying amounts of water to each faucet or fixture. However, the lead content of water consumed at a faucet is impacted by both current and previous water uses within the system. A modeling effort was undertaken to understand the impacts of premise plumbing layout and water usage patterns on exposure risk.

In this study, EPANET and EPANET-MSX were used to model lead dissolution in premise plumbing and were compared to data collected in a Home Plumbing System Simulator at the United States Environmental Protection Agency. The modifications made to EPANET and EPANET-MSX to account for stagnant flow conditions found in premise plumbing systems will be discussed. A validation and parameterization study was conducted to highlight the impact of various relevant parameters—specifically, the impact of lead service line length, number of users in the home, configuration and size of the home plumbing system and types of usage patterns on lead concentration at the tap.

Jonathan Burkhardt, MS, PhD

Environmental Engineer
US Environmental Protection Agency

Jonathan Burkhardt received his PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Cincinnati in 2013. He is a Chemical Engineer with the Environmental Protection Agency's National Risk Management Research Laboratory. His research currently focuses on modeling fate and transport of chemicals within water distribution systems, and investigating optimal configurations of event detection software for realtime monitoring of a variety of applications.

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394935 - Modeling Drinking Water Lead Exposure from Premise Plumbing



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