The HOWS project - "Human-Computer Optimisation for Water Systems Planning and Management" - began this month. The project, which is funded by the EPSRC is a collaboration between academics within Engineering and Computer Science, and will look at ways in which state-of-the-art optimisation tools can be used within the water industry. Often, such methods are not intuitively understood by engineers, which can limit their use to more basic approaches.
The HOWS team will investigate interactive optimisation techniques, putting the engineering expert at the heart of the optimisation process. By exposing the inner-workings of the optimiser, the engineer will be better placed to make informed decisions, resulting in highly optimised solutions to optimisation problems faced within the water industry, that are also suitable for implementation in the real world. To maximise the project's potential, the team - lead by Prof. Dragan Savic and Dr Ed Keedwell - are working closely with partners from the water industry as well as visualisation and optimisation experts.