Gas companies have long felt the need for flow modelling in natural gas transmission and distribution systems.

With the emergence of digital processing of the information related to an in_depth physical study of gas phenomena it became possible to develop network calculation. And, the evolution of DP hardware combined with their ever decreasing cost expanded their use.

Two main categories of applications make use of these calculations:

pipeline sizing studies and pipeline management network monitoring and control

The first category corresponds to static applications where the totality of the network's component parts have to be considered in order to find a technical economic optimum of the capital investments both as concerns network reinforcements and network extensions.

The second category entails the analysis of dynamic physical quantities such as flow rates and instantaneous pressures acquired and processed in real. time. In this case, the aim is to give the monitoring station operator a snapshot of his network and prediction of its behavior under various operating configurations.

The present paper analyzes the DP hardware and software suitable for these two kinds of application and pays special attention to the interactive and ergonomic aspects.

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