MÖDERL, M., SITZENFREI, R., FETZ, T., FLEISCHHACKER, E., RAUCH, W. (2010):
Building theories from case studies is a common research approach that can also be applied to the analysis of networks. Although case studies of real systems bridge the gap between theory and practice, they are nevertheless investigations of a subset of cases, each with specific characteristics. To tackle this problem a multitude of networks with diverging characteristics are generated using the graph theory based Modular Design System (MDS). In this paper the application of this MDS is demonstrated by generating a set of 2,280 virtual Water Supply Systems (WSSs). The layout and the properties of these systems are representative of typical examples encountered in practice. Scatter plots, density and cumulative distribution functions are used to characterise several network parameters. A comparison of the virtual set with three real-world case studies shows similar characteristics. Finally, the potential of the methodology is demonstrated by analysing the impact of increased water demand on hydraulic performance. It can be shown that the allowed maximum and minimum diameters envelope a range of impacts on mean values for nodal pressure.