Utility feature classification

There are two predefined fields on each feature class in a domain network and structure network that provide a classification system for all the features in a utility system. These type attributes allow you to define feature types with specificity while limiting the number of feature classes, which is important for the performance of a utility network.

Asset group values for a gas pipe assembly feature class

The image above shows sample asset groups for a gas pipe assembly feature class. These are configured in the geodatabase using subtypes.

Type attributes

A utility network has two system-provided fields that are part of the default schema for network feature classes. These fields are set up during the configuration of a utility network to extend the asset classification in each feature class.

Asset group

The asset group attribute represents the major classification of utility features. The ASSETGROUP field is part of the schema for all datasets in the structure network and domain network, with the exception of the SubnetLine class. It is also defined as the subtype field. Subtype values are configured to define the major classification of your assets. Further classification of assets is accomplished by assigning attribute domains at the subtype level on the ASSETTYPE field.

The following are examples of asset group subtype values:

  • Devices in an electric domain network: Breaker, Capacitor, Fuse, Recloser, Switch, and Transformer
  • Lines in a gas domain network: Connector, Distribution, GatheringWater, StationPipe, and Transmission
  • Assemblies in a water distribution domain network: CompressorStation, PumpStation, RegulatorStation, and TownBorderStation

Asset type

The asset type attribute represents the minor classification of utility features. This allows further classification for each asset group. The ASSETTYPE field is part of the schema for all datasets in the structure and domain network, with the exception of the SubnetLine class. To extend the classification of assets, attribute domains are assigned on the ASSETTYPE field at the subtype level (asset group) for each network feature class. This allows a rich classification of network features using the asset group as a major classification and asset type as a minor classification of features.

The following are examples of asset type values:

  • The transformer asset group in an electric distribution domain network uses the asset type to represent the type of transformer: StepTransformer, PowerTransformer, and DistributionTransformer.
  • The distribution main asset group for the line feature class in a water domain network uses the asset type to represent materials: Copper, Concrete, Galvanized pipe, Cast iron, and so on.

See Configure a utility network for more details on the configuration of these attributes.

The following is important to keep in mind when managing subtypes and attribute domains used for network feature classification:
  • Ensure the split policy for the coded value domain is set based on the desired behavior for splitting utility network features. It is recommended to use a duplicate split policy for domains assigned to the asset type field. Review split policies for attribute domains.
  • The code value for the asset type attribute domain and asset group subtype cannot exceed 1023.

Subtype group layers

ArcGIS Pro supports the use of subtype group layers. This is a composite layer of subtype values in a feature class and allows you to edit and display these multiple layers as if they were distinct layers on the map. When a domain network or structure network feature class is added to a map, the asset groups are used for symbolization if you're using subtype group layers. These layers draw more efficiently than an equivalent set of individual layers because a single request is made to the data source for the entire subtype group layer for operations such as panning and zooming.

To learn more, see Subtype group layers.