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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Maricopa, Arizona » U.S. Arid Land Agricultural Research Center » Water Management and Conservation Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #176270


item Clemmens, Albert
item Strand, Robert
item Bautista, Eduardo

Submitted to: United States Committee on Irrigation and Drainage Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/3/2005
Publication Date: 4/2/2005
Citation: Clemmens, A.J., Strand, R.J., Bautista, E. 2005. Field testing of sacman automated canal control system. In: United States Committee on Irrigation and Drainage Conference. p. 199-209.

Interpretive Summary: Competition for water supplies is increasing, which prompts water districts to improve their operations. Canal automation provides potential for many water districts to improve their operations and conserve water. Most of the canal automation that has been used in practice consists of local automatic control for individual gates or a centralized control scheme developed for a particular canal. Few of the published centralized control schemes have actually been tested on real canals. In this paper, a centralized control scheme is presented that can be applied to any canal system. The paper also presents results from testing of this control scheme on an irrigation canal over a period of 30 days. The control scheme successfully delivered water to users. These results will be of use to irrigation and large water districts, the Bureau of Reclamation, and consultants.

Technical Abstract: Many irrigation districts currently operate their main canals, pumping plants, etc. remotely with Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) software. This is usually manual operation with perhaps a few local automatic control features. SacMan (software for automated canal management) is a software package that adds canal automation logic to commercially-available, windows-based SCADA packages. It allows the user to implement a variety of automatic control features, including complete automatic control, where feasible. It was developed through research at the U.S. Water Conservation Laboratory in Phoenix, AZ. SacMan has several levels of implementation ranging from manual control to full automatic control, including upstream level control, flow rate control, routing of known demand changes, and full (distant) downstream level control. SacMan interfaces with commercial Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) software, currently iFix by GE Fanuc (formerly Intellution, Inc.), but potentially applicable to other SCADA packages. SacMan was field tested on the WM lateral canal at the Maricopa Stanfield Irrigation and Drainage District (MSIDD) in central Arizona. In July/August 2004, SacMan successfully operated the WM canal for a period of 30 days, nearly continuously. This paper describes the features of this canal automation software and some results from this long-term testing.