A. Sadowska, B. De Schutter, and P.-J. van Overloop, "Event-driven hierarchical control of irrigation canals," Proceedings of the USCID Seventh International Conference on Irrigation and Drainage, Phoenix, Arizona, pp. 457-471, Apr. 2013.
We present a novel, simple and cost-effective strategy for control of irrigation canals to aid water deliveries to the users through the canal. The method enhances water deliveries through the canal by incorporating, alongside local PI controllers maintaining water levels in each canal pool at some predefined setpoints, a higher-layer centralized controller. The purpose of that centralized controller is to coordinate the local controllers by modifying the setpoints in individual pools. This speeds up the delivery process so that water is available to users faster than when only local controllers are used. Because the higher-layer centralized controller is invoked only when deliveries are requested and in normal operating conditions the canal is maintained merely by the local upstream PI controllers, the method is computationally efficient and resilient to temporary communication failures. We use Time Instant Optimization Model Predictive Control as the main control framework to design the higher-layer centralized controller and present a simulation study to illustrate the method proposed in this paper.