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Global sensitivity analysis for micropollutant modeling by means of an urban integrated approach

  • Authors: Mannina, G.; Cosenza, A.; Viviani, G.
  • Publication year: 2015
  • Type: Proceedings (TIPOLOGIA NON ATTIVA)
  • Key words: Contaminants of emerging concerns, mathematical modelling, Monte Carlo simulations, sensitivity analysis, urban water quality.
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The paper presents the sensitivity analysis of an integrated urban water quality system by means of the global sensitivity analysis (GSA). Specifically, an home-made integrated model developed in previous studies has been modified in order to include the micropollutant assessment (namely, sulfamethoxazole - SMX). The model is able to estimate also the interactions between the three components of the system: sewer system (SS), wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) and the receiving water body (RWB). The analysis has been applied to an experimental catchment nearby Palermo (Italy): the Nocella catchment. Five scenarios each characterized by different combinations of sub-systems (i.e., SS, WWTP and RWB) have been considered applying the Extended-FAST method. Results demonstrated that GSA is a powerful tool for increasing operator confidence in the modelling results; the approach can be used for blocking some non-identifiable parameters thus wisely modifying the structure of the model and reducing the related uncertainty. The model factors related to the SS have been found to be the most relevant factors affecting the SMX modeling.