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10 years of supervisory control and data acquisition modernization in northern California (1996 - 2006)




Perkins, Dennis, author
Styles, Stuart, author
U.S. Committee on Irrigation and Drainage, publisher

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The Bureau of Reclamation, Mid-Pacific Region, Water Conservation Field Services Program (WCFSP), and the Irrigation Training and Research Center (ITRC) at Cal Poly State University, San Luis Obispo, have been working with Reclamation irrigation water contractors and others on district delivery system modernization and Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) development for the past 10 years. In 1994, the WCFSP encouraged the ITRC to develop concepts for district modernization to improve water delivery efficiencies. Dr. Charles Burt and the staff at ITRC observed that in many instances, water delivery systems were operated as more of an art than a science. Every canal or pipe system was different and required intricate knowledge and visual observations by the operators to maintain relatively crude levels of flow balance. The development of affordable, non-proprietary automation systems were considered feasible as SCADA applications were becoming common in other industries such as the automotive manufacturing industry. Coupled with mechanical canal level management equipment design improvements over the years, the industry has made large advances in affordable district level water technologies over the last decade.


Presented at SCADA and related technologies for irrigation district modernization, II: a USCID water management conference held on June 6-9, 2007 in Denver, Colorado.

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