# GEOG 110 – Lab #6 – Modeling Surface Water Contamination

```GEOG 110 – Lab #6 – Modeling Surface Water Contamination
Due Date:
11:59pm, Friday, December 9, 2005
Objectives:
Familiarize yourself with the dynamic dissolved oxygen model described
in Chapter 5 of the course text, construct a model that makes use of the
mathematical relationships and system structure as they have been
described, and model surface water contamination in the system, such that
you can examine the impact of adding a wastewater treatment facility to
the system.
Background: Managing surface water contamination is an activity that is critical to
human life in the modern age: As we live in greater and greater
concentrations in urban environments, we are faced with the dual
problems of maintaining a safe drinking water supply upstream of the
population, while still managing and disposing of wastewater downstream
in a fashion that both does not adversely affect water quality and
unreasonably increase the risk of contamination for those that live further
down the river. As you might guess, addressing such a problem can be
accomplished through a simulation approach, as contamination in a
surface water system can exhibit complex behavior. We need some means
of assessing the likely impact of management decisions before we decide
where to build a wastewater treatment plant, and modeling can provide
that means.
Resources:
This lab exercise does not include the background and theory required for
you to understand contamination in a surface water system. For that
information, you should look to material from the lectures and the entirety
of Chapter 5 (pp. 113-126) of the course text, paying special attention to
Sections 5.2.2 through 5.3 where the system structure and mathematical
relationships are described. At this point, you should have already
successfully completed five labs, and you should be getting very
comfortable with using STELLA, and building models in STELLA to
represent systems based solely on a description of that system. You can
refer back to the course text’s background material on perturbation
experiments and sensitivity analysis (Section 3.5, pp. 77-87), if you should
choose to use these approaches to examining the behavior of the model
you create. This lab continues the trend in the lab sequence, where each
successive lab’s procedure becomes a little less step-by-step, and a little
more open-ended. You have already constructed one model from first
principles in Lab 5, and you will need to do the same in this lab, using the
background on contamination in surface water systems in the text to guide
you through the process.
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Procedure:
Be sure to read Chapter 5 before attempting this lab, in order to familiarize
yourself with this model’s components and how they function.
1. Get STELLA started from the Citrix server.
2. For this lab, we are going to use a model that is substantially similar to
the one depicted in Figure 5.5 on page 122 of the text.
In order for you to best understand the system, you might want to try
constructing this model yourself, based on the system’s structure and
mathematical relationships as they are described in the text. You can
check your work against the Chap5a.stm model provided on the disc
that accompanies the textbook.
3. Let us begin by examining the model in its basic form, initially using
the parameters provided on page 124 of the text, and then perform a
sensitivity analysis (3 runs, varying the initial value by 50%) on each
of the six specified parameters to get a sense of how the system
behaves when those parameters are changed. Run through the
sensitivity analyses to get some sense of how the system functions,
describe them in your lab report and answer question 1) in the
exercises below.
4. Now we are ready to examine the impact of adding a wastewater
treatment plant to the system. The most straightforward way to
accomplish this without modifying the model structure would be to
assume that the treatment plant effluent will mix with river water, and
use some data about the characters of the sources of water being mixed
to arrive at some new initial values of DO and BOD for our model.
The course text provides the required values on pp. 125-126. Use the
mass balance equations provided in Chapter 5 along with the provided
data to arrive at the new initial DO and BOD values that we will use
for our simulation that includes the wastewater treatment plant.
2
that you use to arrive at your new DO and BOD values. Based on the
distance and velocity to determine the simulation time.
5. Now, run the simulation again, keeping all the other values as they
were set previously, and change the DO and BOD initial values to
those from your calculations in order to incorporate the presence of the
wastewater treatment plant into the system. Repeat the sensitivity
analyses you did in step 3 above (each of the six parameters, 3 runs,
+/- 50%), using the new values of DO and BOD as a starting point for
those variables and the current values for the others (remember despite
the fact that only the initial values of DO and BOD changed, other
parameters may display different behavior across their range), and
answer questions 3) and 4) below, noting the changes in model
behavior now that the initial DO and BOD reflect the presence of the
wastewater treatment plant.
Exercises:
In addition to providing the full lab report format described below, also
1) If you change a parameter and then let the model continue to run, does the
DO value move towards equilibrium point? Is it a “stable” model? Be
sure to answer this question for every parameter you examine, and be sure
to examine any and all parameters that might have an impact on the
stability of the model. For each simulation (or group of simulations if you
use sensitivity analysis) that you ran, explain what you did and what your
results were. Is there any variable that seems to “drive” this system?
2) Using the mass balance equations provided in Chapter 5, and the data
regarding the characteristics of both the river and wastewater treatment
plant, calculate the new DO and BOD values we will need to model the
system once the wastewater treatment plant has been built. Be sure to
3) Repeat the analyses you describe in question 1), using the new DO and
BOD values that reflect the presence of the wastewater treatment plant in
the system. Compare and contrast the behavior you see in the system now
with that which you observed before you modified the values to include
the wastewater effluent. Does the presence of the effluent shift the model
output into a mode of behavior that is entirely different from that you
observed previously or not?
4) What will the DO concentrations of the water be at the time that the
discharge-river mixture reaches the fishing location 40 kilometers
downstream? Are these concentrations on a downward, upward, or flat
trajectory (i.e. can we expect the problem to get better, keep getting worse,
or remain the same as the waters move downstream)?
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What to do:
water pollution model in your course directory (e.g. mine would be
davidten-lab6.stm). Write a lab report that includes the elements specified
below, saving it in a Word document in your course directory, following
the same naming convention as the model (e.g. mine would be davidtenlab6.doc).
The following should be included in your lab report, as has been required
in previous reports. Be sure to include a complete section describing the
models and the various ways in which you used them to examine the
system behavior and answer the exercises. Do NOT repeat the same thing
over and over when some aspect of the model remains unchanged between
successive simulations, but DO point out the places where you do change
the model between simulation runs and describe the changes fully:
1. Objectives
2. Models
2.1 A brief description of the model
2.2 The systems diagram with each component properly labeled
2.3 The system components:
a) Reservoirs:
b) Processes:
c) Converters:
d) Relationships: Define them mathematically, e.g.
Births=Birth_rate*Population
2.4 Rate Equation for each reservoir: identify the impact of each
converter on the rate equation.
3. Results: Put the model results in your lab report and provide a brief
explanation for the model behavior as see in the graph.
4. Discussion: Answer the questions in the exercises in a Word document
that you’ll also save in your course directory, following the same
naming convention as the model (e.g. mine would be davidtenlab6.doc).
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