The Infrastructure Digital Twin
The digital twin structure consists of a series of mappings. The ‘minimum viable product’ (MVP) in the project will consist of:
- Mapping of flood depth (or other weather hazard) to an individual asset’s availability status, based on combination of available data, with expert knowledge of the asset owners on consequence of given combination of conditions and mitigation strategies
- Mapping from individual asset status to system- level outcomes
- The network model, based on dependence relationships derived from the networks’ structures (i.e. A requires B, A required B and C, A requires B or C, etc.), including dependence both within and between the three networks. This allows the identification of ‘cascade effects’ arising from the mutual dependence of water, electricity and communication systems.
As well as providing practical insights, this MVP will demonstrate how the Information Management Framework (IMF) of the National Digital Twin programme supports interoperability of data between organisations. The ambition of the project extends beyond this, however, and plans extend also to consider network restoration and resilience, as well as considering whether a more detailed engineering model of the three networks is required. CReDo will demonstrate how cross-organisational information sharing across a system-of-systems will improve outcomes for asset owners and citizens, as shown in the diagram above.
Weather and Climate
As stated above, the infrastructure digital twin will directly map a weather scenario to system-level consequences. This can be used directly for studying system operation in given weather conditions, and one contribution of CReDo will be to demonstrate how this can also be used in capital planning through scenario-based decision support.
In principle, a fully logical consistent decision analysis would require consideration of all possible future climates and weathers, which is clearly not possible. CReDo will also therefore demonstrate how a logical framework can be developed for climate resilience investment decisions, based on consideration of a finite number of scenarios that can feasibly be analysed.
The data will be securely hosted and a focus on security throughout the project will help to identify the priority security measures to consider in developing the information management framework and in connecting data sets and digital twins.
Asset owners will need to be able to use the digital twin model to ensure that they are prepared for various flooding scenarios and able to minimise the resulting cost and disruption. The outputs of the digital twin model will therefore need to be available to the asset owners in the form of a decision support tool that relates scenarios, uncertainty and outcomes to their own planning and response processes. CReDo will develop a prototype of such a tool for testing and subsequent development.