The problem of the optimization of regional wastewater systems may be generally formulated as follows: to define the transport and treatment system in a region or water basin, which assure compliance with given pollution control criteria, with minimum cost. In addition, one may try to satisfy other objectives, such as minimum environmental impact, better effluent reuse or adequate phasing. From the optimization point of view, the two main problems that render the solution difficult are the dimensionality and the concavity of cost functions. The matter has been dealt with by many authors, who have produced varied techniques to try to solve this problem. This paper begins with a brief review of the work of those authors who have produced models specifically designed to study the problem. Then, solution strategies are discussed concerning three major items: definition of the objective function and constraints, optimization method and practical applicability of the models. The paper concludes with the discussion of topics for future research.
- Facility location
- Regional wastewater treatment systems