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Volume 13, December-1

Energies, Volume 13, Issue 24 (December-2 2020) – 280 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): HT-ATES (high-temperature aquifer thermal energy storage) systems are a future option to shift large amounts of excess heat from summer to winter. This study characterizes the potential of water-bearing reservoirs in former hydrocarbon formations in the Upper Rhine Graben for heat storage, pointing to a storage capacity of approximately 10 TWh a−1. View this paper.
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Open AccessArticle
Sludge Stabilization Process, Drying Depth and Polymeric Material Addition: Implication on Nitrogen Content, Selected Chemical Properties and Land Requirement in Sand Drying Beds
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6753; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246753 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 556
Abstract
Drying beds are a simple and economical means to dewater municipal sludge and are widely used in places with a suitable climate for air-drying. However, research-based information on drying thickness/drying depth effects on nutrient content and land size requirements for sludge drying is [...] Read more.
Drying beds are a simple and economical means to dewater municipal sludge and are widely used in places with a suitable climate for air-drying. However, research-based information on drying thickness/drying depth effects on nutrient content and land size requirements for sludge drying is scarce. In this study, aerobically digested (AeD), and anaerobically digested without polymer (AnDP0) and with polymer (AnDP1) sludge types were dried in sand drying beds at 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25 cm depths in South Africa. Measured nitrogen (N) fractions and other parameters were more strongly influenced by sludge types than by drying depth. Total N content followed the order of AeD > AnDP1 > AnDP0. Polymeric material addition tended to increase total and inorganic N content and reduce the length of sludge drying period and land size requirement. The study showed that larger land size is required to dry sludge at shallower depths, even though the sludge dried more quickly. Drying sludge at 15 cm was the best option across sludge types in winter, taking an average land area between 261 and 383 m2 over the fewest days of sludge drying, whereas in spring, drying at 20 to 25 cm depth was most favorable. The findings suggest that drying bed management can be based on land area requirements with little concern for biosolid quality changes. For wastewater treatment plants relying on drying in beds, adding polymeric materials may be beneficial where land area for drying beds is limited, but not otherwise. Therefore, land availability is critical in decision making for sustainable sludge drying thickness. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy and Matter Recovery from Organic Waste Processing and Reuse)
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Open AccessArticle
Gasoline Demand Elasticities at the Backdrop of Lower Oil Prices: Fuel-Subsidizing Country Case
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6752; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246752 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 623
Abstract
This study investigates the income and price elasticities of gasoline demand for a fuel subsidizing country case, applying three different time-varying coefficient approaches to the data spanning the period from January 2002 to June 2018. The empirical estimations concluded a cointegration relationship between [...] Read more.
This study investigates the income and price elasticities of gasoline demand for a fuel subsidizing country case, applying three different time-varying coefficient approaches to the data spanning the period from January 2002 to June 2018. The empirical estimations concluded a cointegration relationship between gasoline demand, income, and gasoline price. The income elasticity found ranges from 0.10 to 0.29, while the price elasticity remains constant over time, being −0.15. Income elasticity increases over time, slightly decreasing close to the end of the period, which is specific for a developing country. In the short run, gasoline demand does not respond to the changes in income and price. The policy implications are discussed based on the findings of the study. Research results show that since the income elasticity of demand is not constant, the use of constant elasticities obtained in previous studies might be misleading for policymaking purposes. An increase in income elasticity might be the cause of the inefficiency of the existing vehicles. The small price elasticity allows to say that if policy makers plan to reduce gasoline consumption then increasing its price would not substantially reduce the consumption. The current situation can be utilized to increase energy efficiency and implement eco-friendly technologies. For this purpose, the quality of existing transport modes can be improved. Meanwhile, to meet households’ needs, policies such as providing soft auto loans need to be formed to balance the recent drop in car sales. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mathematical and Statistical Models for Energy with Applications)
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Open AccessArticle
Degradation Rate Location Dependency of Photovoltaic Systems
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6751; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246751 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 315
Abstract
A main challenge towards ensuring improved lifetime performance and reduction of financial risks of photovoltaic (PV) technologies remains the accurate degradation quantification of field systems and the dependency of this performance loss rate to climatic conditions. The purpose of this study is to [...] Read more.
A main challenge towards ensuring improved lifetime performance and reduction of financial risks of photovoltaic (PV) technologies remains the accurate degradation quantification of field systems and the dependency of this performance loss rate to climatic conditions. The purpose of this study is to address these technological issues by presenting a unified methodology for accurately calculating the degradation rate (RD) of PV systems and provide evidence that degradation mechanisms are location dependent. The method followed included the application of data inference and time series analytics, in the scope of comparing the long-term RD of different crystalline Silicon (c-Si) PV systems, installed at different climatic locations. The application of data quality and filtering steps ensured data fidelity for the RD analysis. The yearly RD results demonstrated that the adopted time series analytical techniques converged after 7 years and were in close agreement to the degradation results obtained from indoor standardized procedures. Finally, the initial hypothesis that the RD is location dependent was verified, since the multicrystalline silicon (multi-c-Si) systems at the warm climatic region exhibited higher degradation compared to the respective systems at the moderate climate. For the investigated monocrystalline silicon (mono-c-Si) systems the location-dependency is also affected by the manufacturing technology. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Optimization of Electric Vehicle Charging Points Based on Efficient Use of Chargers and Providing Private Charging Spaces
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6750; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246750 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 454
Abstract
Electric vehicles are a mobility innovation that can help significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change. However, increasing numbers of electric vehicles require the construction of a dense charging infrastructure with a sufficient number of chargers. Based on the identified requirements [...] Read more.
Electric vehicles are a mobility innovation that can help significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change. However, increasing numbers of electric vehicles require the construction of a dense charging infrastructure with a sufficient number of chargers. Based on the identified requirements for existing electric vehicle users and potential new customers, the paper proposes a charging point model for an urban area equipped with a local transformer station and a sufficient number of low-power chargers. In particular, the model focuses on efficient use of chargers throughout the day, considering private rental of chargers paid by residents in the evening. The model uses an optimization method that compares the non-covered fixed costs due to unsold electricity to nonresidents and the annualized costs of building an additional transformer. The proposed optimal charging point solution was tested in a case study using real data capturing users’ habits and their arrivals in and departures from the car park. As our model results show, the great benefit of a park-and-ride car park equipped with chargers consists of a simple increase in car park efficiency, ensuring sufficient numbers of private charging lots, optimizing operating costs, and supporting the development of electromobility. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Branch and Bound Algorithm Based on Prediction Error of Metamodel for Computational Electromagnetics
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6749; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246749 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 275
Abstract
Metamodels proved to be a very efficient strategy for optimizing expensive black-box models, e.g., Finite Element simulation for electromagnetic devices. It enables the reduction of the computational burden for optimization purposes. However, the conventional approach of using metamodels presents limitations such as the [...] Read more.
Metamodels proved to be a very efficient strategy for optimizing expensive black-box models, e.g., Finite Element simulation for electromagnetic devices. It enables the reduction of the computational burden for optimization purposes. However, the conventional approach of using metamodels presents limitations such as the cost of metamodel fitting and infill criteria problem-solving. This paper proposes a new algorithm that combines metamodels with a branch and bound (B&B) strategy. However, the efficiency of the B&B algorithm relies on the estimation of the bounds; therefore, we investigated the prediction error given by metamodels to predict the bounds. This combination leads to high fidelity global solutions. We propose a comparison protocol to assess the approach’s performances with respect to those of other algorithms of different categories. Then, two electromagnetic optimization benchmarks are treated. This paper gives practical insights into algorithms that can be used when optimizing electromagnetic devices. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Process Monitoring in Heavy Duty Drilling Rigs—Data Acquisition System and Cycle Identification Algorithms
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6748; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246748 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 343
Abstract
The monitoring of drilling processes is a well-known topic in the mining industry. It is widely used for rock mass characterization, bit wear monitoring and drilling process assessment. However on-board monitoring systems used for this purpose are installed only on a limited number [...] Read more.
The monitoring of drilling processes is a well-known topic in the mining industry. It is widely used for rock mass characterization, bit wear monitoring and drilling process assessment. However on-board monitoring systems used for this purpose are installed only on a limited number of machines, and breakdowns are possible. There is a need for a data acquisition system that can be used on different drilling rigs and for an automatic data analysis procedure. In this paper, we focused on the automatic detection of drilling cycles, presenting a simple yet reliable system to be universally installed on drilling rigs. The proposed solution covers hardware and software. It is based on the measurement of electric current and acoustic signals. The signal processing methods include threshold-based segmentation, a short-time envelope spectrum and a spectrum for the representation of results. The results of the research have been verified on a real drilling rig within the testing site of its manufacturer by comparing the results with the data of the on-board monitoring system installed on the machine. Novel aspects of our approach include the detection of the pre-boring stage, which has an intermediate amplitude that masks the real drilling cycles, and the use of the percussion instantaneous frequency, which is estimated by acoustic recordings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mining Technologies Innovative Development)
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Open AccessArticle
Free and Forced Vibration Analysis of H-type and Hybrid Vertical-Axis Wind Turbines
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6747; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246747 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 366
Abstract
Vertical-axis wind turbines (VAWTs) are compact and efficient and have become increasingly popular for wind energy harvesting. This paper mainly focuses on free and forced vibration analysis of two different types of VAWTs, i.e., an H-type VAWT and a new hybrid VAWT. The [...] Read more.
Vertical-axis wind turbines (VAWTs) are compact and efficient and have become increasingly popular for wind energy harvesting. This paper mainly focuses on free and forced vibration analysis of two different types of VAWTs, i.e., an H-type VAWT and a new hybrid VAWT. The H-type VAWT has a lower cost, while the hybrid VAWT has a better self-starting capability at a low wind velocity. Both of them can be used for wind energy harvesting. By using the assumed modes method, the two VAWTs are simplified by a single degree-of-freedom (SDOF) model. By utilizing the method of structural mechanics, a multi-degree-of-freedom (MDOF) model is developed for the two VAWTs and the turbines in them are reasonably simplified. Natural frequency analyses for the SDOF and MDOF models of the two VAWTs are conducted. A beam element model (BEM) of the two VAWTs is created to calculate their natural frequencies and mode shapes and to verify natural frequency results from the SDOF and MDOF models. By using the BEM of the two VAWTs, their amplitude-frequency responses are obtained from harmonic response analysis. To analyze forced vibrations of the two VAWTs, aerodynamic loads on the two VAWTs are obtained from computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulation. By using solid element models of the two VAWTs, forced transient responses of the two VAWTs are calculated by using the aerodynamic loads from CFD simulation. Steady-state forced response amplitudes of the 1 m-mast hybrid VAWT are 23.8% and 20.5% smaller in X- and Y-directions than those of the 1 m-mast H-type VAWT, respectively. Frequency contents of the aerodynamic loads from CFD simulation are calculated, which confirm that they are periodic, and the power efficiency of the H-type VAWT is about 2.6% higher that of the hybrid VAWT. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Wind Turbines) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
Patent Analysis on the Development of the Shale Petroleum Industry Based on a Network of Technological Indices
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6746; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246746 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 309
Abstract
This study investigated the technological developments in the shale petroleum industry by analyzing patent data using a network of technological indices. The technological developments were promoted by the beginning of the shale industry, and after the first five years, it showed a more [...] Read more.
This study investigated the technological developments in the shale petroleum industry by analyzing patent data using a network of technological indices. The technological developments were promoted by the beginning of the shale industry, and after the first five years, it showed a more complex development pattern with the convergence of critical technologies. This paper described progress in the shale petroleum technologies as changes in relatedness networks of technological components. The relatedness represents degree of convergence between technological components, and betweenness centrality of network represents priority of technological components. In the results, the progress of the critical technologies such as directional drilling, increasing permeability, and smart systems, were actively carried out from 2012 to 2016. Especially, unconverged technology of increasing permeability and the converged technology of directional drilling and smart system has been intensively developed. Some technological components of the critical technologies are more significant in the form of converged technology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Development of Unconventional Reservoirs 2020)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Study on Process Derivation and Characteristic Analysis for BLDC Motor Design Using Dual Rotor Structure with High Torque Density
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6745; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246745 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 362
Abstract
In this paper, the design process of brushless DC (BLDC) motor adopting the dual rotor structure that can reduce the overall size of the motor while generating the same torque as the conventional permanent magnet BLDC motor is analyzed. A simple size is [...] Read more.
In this paper, the design process of brushless DC (BLDC) motor adopting the dual rotor structure that can reduce the overall size of the motor while generating the same torque as the conventional permanent magnet BLDC motor is analyzed. A simple size is selected by obtaining the torque per rotor volume (TRV), and a method of matching the counter electromotive force by selecting the pole-arc of the magnet through a magnetic equivalent circuit is analyzed. Since the efficiency is low because the 120-degree commutation method is selected, the middle stator is optimized through detailed design through the experimental design method. Afterwards, it has the advantage of being able to shift without stopping due to the characteristic of a dual rotor. For this, an analysis of the driving characteristics for each mode is performed. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Design and Decomposition Analysis of Mixing Zone Structures on Flame Dynamics for a Swirl Burner
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6744; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246744 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 326
Abstract
The recirculation zone and the swirl flame behavior can be influenced by the burner exit shape, and few studies have been made into this structure. Large eddy simulation was carried out on 16 cases to distinguish critical geometry factors. The time series of [...] Read more.
The recirculation zone and the swirl flame behavior can be influenced by the burner exit shape, and few studies have been made into this structure. Large eddy simulation was carried out on 16 cases to distinguish critical geometry factors. The time series of the heat release rate were decomposed using seasonal-trend decomposition procedure to exclude the effect of short physical time. Dynamic mode decomposition (DMD) was performed to separate flame structures. The frequency characteristics extracted from the DMD modes were compared with those from the flame transfer functions. Results show that the flame cases can be categorized into three types, all of which are controlled by a specific geometric parameter. Except one type of flame, they show nonstationary behavior by the Kwiatkowski–Phillips–Schmidt–Shin test. The frequency bands corresponding to the coherent structures are identified. The flame transfer function indicates that the flame can respond to external excitation in the frequency range 100–300 Hz. The DMD modes capture the detailed flame structures. The higher frequency bands can be interpolated as the streamwise vortices and shedding vortices. The DMD modes, which correspond to the bands of flame transfer functions, can be estimated as streamwise vortices at the edges. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Energy Fundamentals and Conversion)
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Open AccessArticle
Analysis on Displacement Angle of Phase-Shifted Carrier PWM for Modular Multilevel Converter
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6743; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246743 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 296
Abstract
This paper provides theoretical and experimental discussions on the characteristics of the modular multilevel converter (MMC) when phase-shifted carrier sinusoidal pulse-width modulation (PSC-SPWM) is applied. Harmonic-cancellation characteristics of output voltage and circulating current are analyzed on the basis of a general implementation of [...] Read more.
This paper provides theoretical and experimental discussions on the characteristics of the modular multilevel converter (MMC) when phase-shifted carrier sinusoidal pulse-width modulation (PSC-SPWM) is applied. Harmonic-cancellation characteristics of output voltage and circulating current are analyzed on the basis of a general implementation of PSC-SPWM with two freedom displacement angles. Five available PSC-SPWM schemes with different carrier displacement angles were obtained, and a detailed performance comparison about output voltage and circulating current harmonic characteristics is presented. On the basis of the equivalent circuit with ideal transformer representation of the SMs, capacitor voltages affected by PSC-SPWM schemes are also briefly analyzed. The proposed PSC-SPWM schemes can unify two different cases of odd and even SM situations for output voltage and circulating current harmonic minimization, respectively. Lastly, the optimal schemes for practical MMC application were verified by simulation and experiments on an MMC prototype. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Power Electronic Converters: Control and Applications)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Combined Multi-Layer Feature Fusion and Edge Detection Method for Distributed Photovoltaic Power Station Identification
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6742; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246742 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 413
Abstract
Distributed photovoltaic power stations are an effective way to develop and utilize solar energy resources. Using high-resolution remote sensing images to obtain the locations, distribution, and areas of distributed photovoltaic power stations over a large region is important to energy companies, government departments, [...] Read more.
Distributed photovoltaic power stations are an effective way to develop and utilize solar energy resources. Using high-resolution remote sensing images to obtain the locations, distribution, and areas of distributed photovoltaic power stations over a large region is important to energy companies, government departments, and investors. In this paper, a deep convolutional neural network was used to extract distributed photovoltaic power stations from high-resolution remote sensing images automatically, accurately, and efficiently. Based on a semantic segmentation model with an encoder-decoder structure, a gated fusion module was introduced to address the problem that small photovoltaic panels are difficult to identify. Further, to solve the problems of blurred edges in the segmentation results and that adjacent photovoltaic panels can easily be adhered, this work combines an edge detection network and a semantic segmentation network for multi-task learning to extract the boundaries of photovoltaic panels in a refined manner. Comparative experiments conducted on the Duke California Solar Array data set and a self-constructed Shanghai Distributed Photovoltaic Power Station data set show that, compared with SegNet, LinkNet, UNet, and FPN, the proposed method obtained the highest identification accuracy on both data sets, and its F1-scores reached 84.79% and 94.03%, respectively. These results indicate that effectively combining multi-layer features with a gated fusion module and introducing an edge detection network to refine the segmentation improves the accuracy of distributed photovoltaic power station identification. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue GIS and Remote Sensing for Renewable Energy Assessment and Maps)
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Open AccessArticle
Competition in Power Generation: Ex-ante Analysis of Indonesia’s Electricity Market
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6741; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246741 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 393
Abstract
This research optimises the mix and structure of Generation Companies (GenCos) in the Sumatra power system, Indonesia. Market power, indicating the ability to raise prices profitably above the competitive level, tends to be a significant problem in the aftermath of electricity market restructuring. [...] Read more.
This research optimises the mix and structure of Generation Companies (GenCos) in the Sumatra power system, Indonesia. Market power, indicating the ability to raise prices profitably above the competitive level, tends to be a significant problem in the aftermath of electricity market restructuring. In the process of regulatory reform and the development of competitive electricity markets, it is desirable and practical to establish an efficient number of competitor GenCos. Simulations of a power system account for multi-plant mergers of GenCos subject to a regulatory measure of the Residual Supply Index and the influence of direct current load flow and the topology of the system. This study simulates the Sumatra power system in order to determine the following: optimal market structure, efficient GenCo generation mix, and the optimal number of competitive GenCos. Further, this study seeks to empirically optimise the electricity generation mix and electricity market structure of the Sumatra power system using DC load flow optimisation, market power index, and multi-plant monopoly analysis. The simulations include generation and transmission constraints to represent network constraints. This research is the first to analyse the Sumatra power system using imperfect (Cournot) competition modelling. Furthermore, this study is the first kind to optimise the mix and structure of the Sumatra generation power market. The guidelines and methodology in this research can be implemented in other countries characterised by a monopoly electricity utility company. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Policy and Policy Implications 2020)
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Open AccessArticle
Determining If Oil Prices Significantly Affect Renewable Energy Investment in African Countries with Energy Security Concerns
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6740; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246740 - 21 Dec 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 401
Abstract
As concerns regarding the adverse impacts of energy production and consumption on the environment grow, countries across the world are now charged with developing effective strategies that provide energy security and protect the environment. This means that efforts to generate significant investments and [...] Read more.
As concerns regarding the adverse impacts of energy production and consumption on the environment grow, countries across the world are now charged with developing effective strategies that provide energy security and protect the environment. This means that efforts to generate significant investments and business opportunities to boost the growth of renewable energy need to increase rapidly. However, there are limited studies on what will facilitate the increase of renewable energy investment in Africa. The main factor considered in this study relates to the sensitivity to changes in oil prices, gross domestic product (GDP), interest rate and oil price volatility’s impact on the renewable energy investment (REI) in countries with energy security concerns and if there is any significant influence from oil price shocks. With the help of an unrestricted vector retrogressive model and an annual panel data approach that covers the period 1990–2018, this paper examines the link between renewable energy investment and three macroeconomic variables: oil prices, GDP growth-adjusted interest rates and oil price volatility. The results indicate that REI exhibited immediate positive responses to oil shocks. However, renewable energy investment continued to fluctuate negatively in response to GDP. The results also show that the REI responded positively to interest rates in Africa and it exhibited immediate negative responses to oil price volatility but became positive after the second period. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Global Market for Crude Oil)
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Open AccessArticle
Multi-Objective Optimization of Solar Thermal Systems Applied to Portuguese Dwellings
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6739; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246739 - 21 Dec 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 316
Abstract
Solar thermal systems have been widely used to increase energy efficiency in the building sector, since the use of renewable energy sources became one of the top priorities to meet environmental targets. The main objective of this study is the thermo-economic optimization of [...] Read more.
Solar thermal systems have been widely used to increase energy efficiency in the building sector, since the use of renewable energy sources became one of the top priorities to meet environmental targets. The main objective of this study is the thermo-economic optimization of solar thermal systems for residential building applications, considering a multi-objective approach. The simulations were performed through a MatLab code by implementing an elitist variant of Non-dominated Sorting Genetic Algorithm-II (NASGA-II). The solar collection area and the linear loss coefficient as well as the tank storage volume were defined as decision variables. A two-dimensional Pareto front was obtained, considering as objective functions the minimization of the annualized investment cost and the maximization of the solar collection efficiency. Based on the best trade-off between both objectives and considering that the solar thermal systems can operate for a period of at least 15 years, the Pareto analysis led to the conclusion that a system with an annualized investment cost between 270 and 280 €/year allows reaching a collection efficiency of 60%. After the analysis of the optimal solution points, a configuration was selected to estimate the system total purchasing cost: a panel with a solar area of 4.17 m2 and with a linear coefficient loss of 3.684 W/m2.K; a storage volume of 0.275 m3; and a pump flow rate of 0.1364 m3/h. For this configuration, we estimated a total purchasing cost of 2545.0 €, whereas the solar collector and the storage tank are the most expensive components, representing a share of 42% and 43%, respectively. These results represent a specific cost of 610.3 €/m2 per solar collection area. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optimization of Solar Thermal Systems for Buildings)
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Open AccessArticle
Energy Dependencies in Li-Ion Cells and Their Influence on the Safety of Electric Motor Vehicles and Other Large Battery Packs
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6738; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246738 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 328
Abstract
For this work, the specific heat value of a Li-ion cell was determined experimentally as if it were a homogeneous body. The heat absorbed in the cell was compared with the amount of energy contained in the charged cell. It was found that [...] Read more.
For this work, the specific heat value of a Li-ion cell was determined experimentally as if it were a homogeneous body. The heat absorbed in the cell was compared with the amount of energy contained in the charged cell. It was found that a fully charged cell poses a risk of spontaneous combustion in the event of the release of electrical energy. On the basis of literature research, the combustion process of a lithium cell has been described. The formula was derived for the value of the state of charge that does not pose a risk of self-ignition. In view of the existing threats, the currently used protection against cell damage and tests to demonstrate the safety of cells were analyzed. It has been indicated that currently used battery management systems do not guarantee the safety in a state of developing thermal runaway process. A new active way of protecting cells in a battery has been proposed, consisting in sectoral discharge of cells. The use of this solution would be important for the improvement of fire safety in the automotive industry as well as in mining and in the construction of energy storage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electromagnetic Energy in Modern Engineering and Medical Technologies)
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Open AccessArticle
MORED: A Moroccan Buildings’ Electricity Consumption Dataset
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6737; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246737 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 555
Abstract
This paper consists of two parts: an overview of existing open datasets of electricity consumption and a description of the Moroccan Buildings’ Electricity Consumption Dataset, a first of its kind, coined as MORED. The new dataset comprises electricity consumption data of various Moroccan [...] Read more.
This paper consists of two parts: an overview of existing open datasets of electricity consumption and a description of the Moroccan Buildings’ Electricity Consumption Dataset, a first of its kind, coined as MORED. The new dataset comprises electricity consumption data of various Moroccan premises. Unlike existing datasets, MORED provides three main data components: whole premises (WP) electricity consumption, individual load (IL) ground-truth consumption, and fully labeled IL signatures, from affluent and disadvantaged neighborhoods. The WP consumption data were acquired at low rates (1/5 or 1/10 samples/s) from 12 households; the IL ground-truth data were acquired at similar rates from five households for extended durations; and IL signature data were acquired at high and low rates (50 k and 4 samples/s) from 37 different residential and industrial loads. In addition, the dataset encompasses non-intrusive load monitoring (NILM) metadata. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Energy and Buildings)
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Open AccessArticle
Optimization of Fracture Spacing and Well Spacing in Utica Shale Play Using Fast Analytical Flow-Cell Model (FCM) Calibrated with Numerical Reservoir Simulator
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6736; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246736 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 288
Abstract
Recently, a flow-cell model (FCM) was specifically developed to quickly generate physics-based forecasts of production rates and estimated ultimate resources (EURs) for infill wells, as the basis for the estimation of proven undeveloped reserves. Such reserves estimations provide operators with key collateral for [...] Read more.
Recently, a flow-cell model (FCM) was specifically developed to quickly generate physics-based forecasts of production rates and estimated ultimate resources (EURs) for infill wells, as the basis for the estimation of proven undeveloped reserves. Such reserves estimations provide operators with key collateral for further field development with reserves-based loans. FCM has been verified in previous studies to accurately forecast production rates and EURs for both black oil and dry gas wells. This study aims to expand the application range of FCM to predict the production performance and EURs of wells planned in undeveloped acreage of the wet gas window. Forecasts of the well rates and EURs with FCM are compared with the performance predictions generated with an integrated reservoir simulator for multi-fractured wells, using detailed field data from the Utica Field Experiment. Results of FCM, with adjustment factors to account for wet gas compressibility effects, match closely with the numerical performance forecasts. The advantage of FCM is that it can run on a fast spreadsheet template. Once calibrated for wet gas wells by a numerical reservoir simulator accounting for compositional flow, FCM can forecast the performance of future wells when completion design parameters, such as fracture spacing and well spacing, are changed. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Increasing Energy Efficiency and Productivity of the Comminution Process in Tumbling Mills by Indirect Measurements of Internal Dynamics—An Overview
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6735; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246735 - 21 Dec 2020
Viewed by 518
Abstract
Tumbling mills have been widely implemented in many industrial sectors for the grinding of bulk materials. They have been used for decades in the production of fines and in the final stages of ore comminution, where optimal levels for the enrichment particles’ sizes [...] Read more.
Tumbling mills have been widely implemented in many industrial sectors for the grinding of bulk materials. They have been used for decades in the production of fines and in the final stages of ore comminution, where optimal levels for the enrichment particles’ sizes are obtained. Even though these ubiquitous machines of relatively simple construction have been subjected to extensive studies, the industry still struggles with very low energy efficiency of the comminution process. Moreover, obtaining an optimal size for the grinding product particles is crucial for the effectiveness of the following processes and waste production reduction. New, innovative processing methods and machines are being developed to tackle the problem; however, tumbling mills are still most commonly used in all ranges of the industry. Since heavy equipment retrofitting is the most costly approach, process optimization with dedicated models and control systems is the most preferable solution for energy consumption reduction. While the classic technological measurements in mineral processing are well adopted by the industry, nowadays research focuses on new methods of the mill’s internal dynamics analysis and control. This paper presents a retrospective overview of the existing models of internal load motion, an overview of the innovations in process control, and some recent research and industrial approaches from the energy consumption reduction point of view. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mining Technologies Innovative Development)
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Open AccessArticle
Improvement of Strength Parameters of Cement Matrix with the Addition of Siliceous Fly Ash by Using Nanometric C-S-H Seeds
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6734; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246734 - 21 Dec 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 445
Abstract
Modification of a cement matrix using additives and admixtures has been a common practice for many years. The use of some mineral additives as substitutes for the cement, e.g., the siliceous fly ashes (FAs), has a positive effect on reducing the energy used [...] Read more.
Modification of a cement matrix using additives and admixtures has been a common practice for many years. The use of some mineral additives as substitutes for the cement, e.g., the siliceous fly ashes (FAs), has a positive effect on reducing the energy used in cement production. On the other hand, such activities may have negative effects due to the lowering of strength parameters of composites in early stages of curing. In order to solve this problem, over the last few years, thanks to the patented "seedings" technology, a branch of industry connected with the production of admixtures that accelerate the binding process has developed significantly. Therefore, the paper presents the results of research aimed at analyzing the parameters of FA cement matrix with the nanoadmixture containing the nanometric C-S-H seeds (nanoadmixture (NA)). By using the modern NA, an attempt was made to neutralize the negative influence of the used industrial waste on the structure of the cement matrix in the early stages of its curing. The paper presents the results of strength tests for the FA cement pastes modified by NA in seven test periods, i.e., after 8, 12, 24 and 72 h, and 7, 14 and 28 days. Additionally, hydration heat tests were carried out on the analyzed material in the first 24 hours of curing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Advanced Energy Materials)
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Open AccessArticle
A Tool for Evaluating the Performance of SiC-Based Bidirectional Battery Chargers for Automotive Applications
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6733; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246733 - 20 Dec 2020
Viewed by 482
Abstract
In this paper, a procedure to simulate an electronic power converter for control design and optimization purposes is proposed. For the addressed application, the converter uses SiC-MOSFET technology in bidirectional battery chargers composed of two power stages. The first stage consists of a [...] Read more.
In this paper, a procedure to simulate an electronic power converter for control design and optimization purposes is proposed. For the addressed application, the converter uses SiC-MOSFET technology in bidirectional battery chargers composed of two power stages. The first stage consists of a single-phase AC/DC power factor correction synchronous rectifier. The following stage is a DC/DC dual active bridge. The converter has been modulated using a phase-shift technique which is able to manage bidirectional power flows. The development of a model-based simulation approach is essential to simplify the different design phases. Moreover, it is also important for the final validation of the control algorithm. A suitable tool consisting of a system-level simulation environment has been adopted. The tool is based on a block diagram design method accomplished using the Simulink toolbox in MATLAB. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced DC-DC Power Converters and Switching Converters)
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Open AccessArticle
Investigation of the Physico-Chemical Properties of the Products Obtained after Mixed Organic-Inorganic Leaching of Spent Li-Ion Batteries
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6732; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246732 - 20 Dec 2020
Viewed by 510
Abstract
Lithium-ion batteries are currently one of the most important mobile energy storage units for portable electronics such as laptops, tablets, smartphones, etc. Their widespread application leads to the generation of large amounts of waste, so their recycling plays an important role in environmental [...] Read more.
Lithium-ion batteries are currently one of the most important mobile energy storage units for portable electronics such as laptops, tablets, smartphones, etc. Their widespread application leads to the generation of large amounts of waste, so their recycling plays an important role in environmental policy. In this work, the process of leaching with sulfuric acid for the recovery of metals from spent Li-ion batteries in the presence of glutaric acid and hydrogen peroxide as reducing agents is presented. Experimental results indicate that glutaric-acid application improves the leaching performance compared to the use of just hydrogen peroxide under the same conditions. Obtained samples of leaching residues after mixed inorganic-organic leaching were characterized with Scanning Electron Microscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy, and X-ray diffraction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Modelling and Calculation of Raw Material Industry)
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Open AccessArticle
Small Hydropower in the Baltic States—Current Status and Potential for Future Development
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6731; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246731 - 20 Dec 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 515
Abstract
Small hydropower (SHP) plays an important role in the Baltic States as a reliable and efficient source of electricity from renewable sources. This study presents the historical development, current status, and possible trends for the future development of SHP in the Baltic States [...] Read more.
Small hydropower (SHP) plays an important role in the Baltic States as a reliable and efficient source of electricity from renewable sources. This study presents the historical development, current status, and possible trends for the future development of SHP in the Baltic States with insights into the legal background and development policies for SHP in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. For the assessment of hydraulic structures in the Baltic States, the historical data was used supplemented with data from hydropower associations, the national departments of statistics, electricity transmission systems operators, etc. The currently recommended best practice for SHP development is the utilisation of existing sites with available infrastructure. These include old water mill sites and existing dam sites, which, in the Baltic States, number more than 1500. The majority of these sites have their power potential attributed to micro-hydro (<100 kW). In this study the potential of the hydropower capacity at historic, currently nonpowered dams is evaluated and the distribution of the micro-hydro sites within the EU network of protected areas under Natura 2000 and nationally designated areas is presented. The potential electricity generation from such historic sites in the Baltic States is more than 200 GWh/year. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Energy Technologies for Power System Transformation)
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Open AccessArticle
CsPbBr3 Nanocrystals-Based Polymer Nanocomposite Films: Effect of Polymer on Spectroscopic Properties and Moisture Tolerance
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6730; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246730 - 20 Dec 2020
Viewed by 403
Abstract
Metal halide perovskites nanocrystals (NCs) represent an emerging class of materials that find increasing application in optoelectronic and photovoltaic devices, thanks to their intriguing optical properties, including high absorption coefficient, high fluorescence quantum yield (PL QY) and fast charge carrier separation. However, their [...] Read more.
Metal halide perovskites nanocrystals (NCs) represent an emerging class of materials that find increasing application in optoelectronic and photovoltaic devices, thanks to their intriguing optical properties, including high absorption coefficient, high fluorescence quantum yield (PL QY) and fast charge carrier separation. However, their opening to market is still hindered by their limited reliability, due to an intrinsic structural instability and degradation of their photophysical properties upon air, moisture, and light exposure. The incorporation of perovskite NCs in polymer matrix can limit some of the NC instability issues, with advantages in film processability, device fabrication and mechanical performance, being also useful for fundamental studies. In this regard, here, nanocomposites based on polymethylmethacrylate or polystyrene embedding all-inorganic CsPbBr3 NCs have been prepared and processed in the form of flexible free-standing films. A systematic spectrofluorimetric study, comprising steady state photoluminescence (PL), PL quantum yield (QY) and PL decay of the free-standing films before and after exposure to relative humidity condition (RH% 85%, at 25 °C) is performed and discussed. Phase segregation phenomena, changes in NC passivation and recombination dynamics are evaluated as a function of polymer loading and its molecular structure and finally the efficacy of the polymer as moisture barrier investigated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Inorganic Halide Perovskites)
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Open AccessArticle
Optimal Operation for Integrated Electricity–Heat System with Improved Heat Pump and Storage Model to Enhance Local Energy Utilization
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6729; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246729 - 20 Dec 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 428
Abstract
As the need for clean energy increases, massive distributed energy resources are deployed, strengthening the interdependence of multi-carrier energy systems. This has raised concerns on the electricity-heat system’s co-operation for lower operation costs, higher energy efficiency, and higher flexibility. This paper discusses the [...] Read more.
As the need for clean energy increases, massive distributed energy resources are deployed, strengthening the interdependence of multi-carrier energy systems. This has raised concerns on the electricity-heat system’s co-operation for lower operation costs, higher energy efficiency, and higher flexibility. This paper discusses the co-operation of integrated electricity–heat system. In the proposed model, network constraints in both systems are considered to guarantee system operations’ security: the branch flow model is utilized to describe the electricity network, while a convexified model considering variable mass flow and temperature dynamics is adopted to describe the heat network. Additionally, novel models for heat pumps and the stratified water tank are proposed to represent the physical system more accurately. Finally, to preserve the information privacy of separate systems, a distributed algorithm is proposed based on the alternating direction method of multipliers (ADMM). Numerical studies show that the co-operation could provide a more economical and reliable solution than the decoupled operation of the heat network and electricity network. Moreover, the ADMM-based algorithm could derive solutions very close to the optimum provided by centralized optimization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Electrical Power and Energy System)
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Open AccessArticle
Impact of the Minimum Head on Low-Head Hydropower Plants Energy Production and Profitability
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6728; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246728 - 20 Dec 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 563
Abstract
In Poland, existing barrages are characterized by relatively high flow and low head, which is challenging for the effective utilization of theoretical watercourse power. The paper presents the impact of the minimum head of the hydro sets on the annual electricity production of [...] Read more.
In Poland, existing barrages are characterized by relatively high flow and low head, which is challenging for the effective utilization of theoretical watercourse power. The paper presents the impact of the minimum head of the hydro sets on the annual electricity production of small hydropower plants at low-head locations for two types of water turbines: Archimedes and Kaplan turbines. A developed mathematical model was used to simulate energy yield from Archimedes and Kaplan turbines for a given value of the minimum technical head, depending on the number of installed hydro sets. For economic analysis purposes, the levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) and net present value (NPV) indicators were calculated. The conducted research allowed for comparing Archimedes and Kaplan’s turbine operating conditions and how the minimum head parameter influences their electricity production and utilization time. As concluded in the results, the influence of minimum head in energy production is more distinct for the Archimedes screw technology than for the Kaplan turbine. The research shows that the decrease in energy production associated with the hydro unit’s minimum head parameter is from 0% to 30% for Kaplan, and it is 6% to 52% for Archimedes turbines. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Energy Technologies for Power System Transformation)
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Open AccessArticle
Airtightness Analysis of the Built Heritage–Field Measurements of Nineteenth Century Buildings through Blower Door Tests
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6727; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246727 - 20 Dec 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 663
Abstract
Airtightness is a major issue in architectural design and it has a significant impact on the energy performance of buildings. Moreover, the energy behaviour of built heritage is due, to its singular characteristics, still a great unknown. The aim of this study is [...] Read more.
Airtightness is a major issue in architectural design and it has a significant impact on the energy performance of buildings. Moreover, the energy behaviour of built heritage is due, to its singular characteristics, still a great unknown. The aim of this study is to establish a better knowledge of the airtightness of historical buildings, based on an in depth field study using blower-door tests. A set of 37 enclosures were analyzed inside eight buildings located in historical areas of a Spanish city with a significant built heritage. They were constructed between 1882 and 1919 and include diverse construction typologies applied for many building uses such as residential, cultural, educational, administrative and emblematic. The results indicate lower values compared to other previous airtightness studies of historical buildings. The average air change rate was found to be n50 = 9.03 h−1 and the airtightness of the enclosures presented a wide range of between 0.68 and 37.12 h−1. Three main levels of airtightness were identified with two thirds of the tested samples belonging to the intermediate level between 3–20 h−1. To conclude, several correlations have been developed which provide a method to estimate air leakage and could serve as a basis for energy performance studies of these kinds of building. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Modeling Study on Heat Transfer in Marangoni Dropwise Condensation for Ethanol-Water Mixture Vapors
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6726; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246726 - 20 Dec 2020
Viewed by 311
Abstract
In this paper, a model was developed to predict the heat transfer characteristics of Marangoni dropwise condensation. In accordance with the feature of Marangoni condensation, condensation was treated as dropwise condensation of mixture vapors. The condensation space was divided into two parts: the [...] Read more.
In this paper, a model was developed to predict the heat transfer characteristics of Marangoni dropwise condensation. In accordance with the feature of Marangoni condensation, condensation was treated as dropwise condensation of mixture vapors. The condensation space was divided into two parts: the vapor diffusion layer and the condensate layer. For the condensate layer, the classical heat transfer calculation method of dropwise condensation was imitated to obtain the heat transfer characteristics. For the vapor diffusion layer, the heat transfer characteristics were achieved by solving the conservation equations. These heat transfer characteristics were coupled through the conjunct boundary, which was the vapor-liquid interface. The model was applied to the condensation of water-ethanol mixture vapors. A comparison with the existing experimental data showed that the developed model could basically reflect the influences of vapor-to-surface temperature difference, vapor concentration, vapor pressure, and vapor velocity on heat transfer characteristic of Marangoni condensation. Results showed that some differences existed between the calculation results and experimental results, but the prediction deviation of the model could be acceptable in the range of vapor-to-surface temperature difference where the condensation heat transfer coefficients reached peak values. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Condensation Heat Transfer)
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Open AccessArticle
Experimental Determination of the Influence of Shape on the Heat Transfer Process in a Crushed Granite Storage Bed
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6725; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246725 - 20 Dec 2020
Viewed by 330
Abstract
The article presents the problem of modelling the charging of a constant-phase bed storage in the first hours of the process. The places of errors in the heat transfer calculations for the packed beds were indicated. Granite in the shape of spheres and [...] Read more.
The article presents the problem of modelling the charging of a constant-phase bed storage in the first hours of the process. The places of errors in the heat transfer calculations for the packed beds were indicated. Granite in the shape of spheres and crushed rocks, with a characteristic dimension of 50 mm, was used for the experimental tests. The material was subjected to tomographic examination and then used as a storage material. The charging process was carried out for three flow rates: 0.006, 0.008 and 0.010 m3/s. After three hours of testing, the temperature of the outlet air for the granite sphere as the storage material was the same as for the granite crushed rock. However, the biggest differences occurred after 1 h of charging. They were equal to: 40.4% for the flow rate of 0.006 m3/s, 22.0% for the flow rate of 0.008 m3/s, and 18.5% for the flow rate of 0.010 m3/s. The differences were greater than the uncertainty of the measurements. As a result, different temperatures of the storage material were obtained. After three hours, they were equal to: 25.2%, 12.3% and 8.6% for the lowest, medium, and highest airflow, respectively. The conducted heat transfer analysis and the relationship Nu = f(Re) was determined. The influence of the calculated and actual surface of the crushed rock on the heat exchange process was explained. For all the tested air flow rates through the bed, higher thermal parameters were obtained for the crushed rock than for the sphere. The maximum differences in the Nu number were: 222.6%, 151.4% and 161.3% for the flow of 0.006, 0.008 and 0.010 m3/s, respectively. This means that the description of the heat exchange process in the piled beds would require a parameter that takes into account the geometry of the storage material. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Renewable Energy and Energy Storage Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Ageing Tests of Samples of Glass-Epoxy Core Rods in Composite Insulators Subjected to High Direct Current (DC) Voltage in a Thermal Chamber
Energies 2020, 13(24), 6724; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13246724 - 20 Dec 2020
Viewed by 496
Abstract
In this article, we presented the results of the tests performed on three sets of samples of glass-reinforced epoxy (GRE) core rods used in alternating current (AC) composite insulators with silicone rubber housing. The objective of this examination was to test the aging [...] Read more.
In this article, we presented the results of the tests performed on three sets of samples of glass-reinforced epoxy (GRE) core rods used in alternating current (AC) composite insulators with silicone rubber housing. The objective of this examination was to test the aging resistance of the rod material when exposed to direct current (DC) high voltage. We hypothesized that the long-term effects of the electrostatic field on the GRE core rod material would lead to a gradual degradation of its mechanical properties caused by ionic current flow. Further, we hypothesized that reducing the mechanical strength of the GRE core rod would lead to the breakage of the insulator. The first group of samples was used for reference. The samples from the second group were subjected to a temperature of about 50 °C for 6000 h. The third group of samples were aged by temperature and DC high voltage for the same time. The samples were examined using the 3-point bending test, micro-hardness measurement and microscopic analysis. No recordable degradation effects were found. Long-term temperature impact and, above all, the combined action of temperature and DC high voltage did not reduce the mechanical parameters or change the microstructure of the GRE material. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue High Voltage Insulating Materials-Current State and Prospects)
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