Project: Water Distribution System, Nicaragua
Sponsors: Just4Water and the Las Curenas Community
Team Members: Jesse Anderson, Josue Hernandez, Oscar Herrera
Faculty Advisors: Mr. Smith and Mr. Stark
Las Curenas is a village in mountainous northern Nicaragua. It has access to clean water from two wells, but has no distribution system in place to direct water from the wells to each of the houses. Villagers walk long distances to the wells and then carry the water back to the village in large buckets. AVODEC, a Nicaraguan NGO, lacked the engineering proficiency to design and implement a water distribution system for the village. Just4Water, a student organization at Texas A&M University partnered with AVODEC to sponsor a design project with Biological and Agricultural Engineering (BAEN) seniors to help.
The project goal was to design an effective, cost-efficient water storage and distribution system to meet the water demands of each household. The team also designed and implemented a rainwater catchment system for water storage, including the piping layout, pipe and pump specs, and recommendations. Students used mathematical equations to determine the pressure losses across the system and based on their calculations, sized pumps and piping diameters. Working with EPANet and ArcGIS, they mapped the system and provided clear points of data to use in the equations. The storage tank was sized using predetermined methods outlined in Nicaragua by the partners. The tank will hold half of the daily water demand and keep allowance for excess requirements. The team also provided a datasheet with all piping dimensions, pump specifications, tank dimensions, and cost.