Special Issue "Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference"

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 September 2016).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Kondo-Francois Aguey-Zinsou
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Chemical Engineering, The University of New South Wales, Room 509, High Street, Gate 2, Sydney, NSW 2052 Australia
Interests: Energy Generation; Conversion and Storage Engineering; Nanomaterials; Physical Chemistry of Materials; Biocatalysis and Enzyme Technology; Catalysis and Mechanisms of Reactions; Carbon Capture Engineering (excl. Sequestration)
Dr. Da-Wei Wang
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Chemical Engineering, The University of New South Wales, Room 509, High Street, Gate 2, Sydney, NSW 2052 Australia
Dr. Yun-Hau Ng
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Energy and Environment, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China
Interests: photocatalysis, solar fuels, water splitting, hydrogen generation, CO2 reduction, nitrogen fixation

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The Second Energy Future Conference (www.ozenergyfuture.com) will focus on energy storage—from generation to distribution, and cover international advances in the area. As part of the Energy Future Conference, we are inviting publications in the particular areas of energy storage including generation, distribution, policy, and social dimensions. Energy storage is central to the challenges facing society in the 21st century, i.e., how to transition to sustainable energy systems. The challenges are also in the implementation of new technological solutions re-shaping the energy sector, at the grid and off-grid levels, for mobility, but also industrial, commercial, and residential buildings.

Prof. Dr. Kondo-Francois Aguey-Zinsou
Dr Da-Wei Wang
Dr Yun-Hau Ng
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • energy storage
  • power systems
  • energy generation
  • energy delivery, transmission and distribution
  • energy efficiency
  • energy systems
  • renewable energy
  • fossil based energy
  • alternate fuels
  • nuclear energy

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Dynamic Exergy Analysis for the Thermal Storage Optimization of the Building Envelope
Energies 2017, 10(1), 95; https://doi.org/10.3390/en10010095 - 13 Jan 2017
Cited by 2
Abstract
As a measure of energy “quality”, exergy is meaningful for comparing the potential for thermal storage. Systems containing the same amount of energy could have considerably different capabilities in matching a demand profile, and exergy measures this difference. Exergy stored in the envelope [...] Read more.
As a measure of energy “quality”, exergy is meaningful for comparing the potential for thermal storage. Systems containing the same amount of energy could have considerably different capabilities in matching a demand profile, and exergy measures this difference. Exergy stored in the envelope of buildings is central in sustainability because the environment could be an unlimited source of energy if its interaction with the envelope is optimised for maintaining the indoor conditions within comfort ranges. Since the occurring phenomena are highly fluctuating, a dynamic exergy analysis is required; however, dynamic exergy modelling is complex and has not hitherto been implemented in building simulation tools. Simplified energy and exergy assessments are presented for a case study in which thermal storage determines the performance of seven different wall types for utilising nocturnal ventilation as a passive cooling strategy. Hourly temperatures within the walls are obtained with the ESP-r software in free-floating operation and are used to assess the envelope exergy storage capacity. The results for the most suitable wall types were different between the exergy analysis and the more traditional energy performance indicators. The exergy method is an effective technique for selecting the construction type that results in the most favourable free-floating conditions through the analysed passive strategy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Open AccessArticle
Development of a Numerical Weather Analysis Tool for Assessing the Precooling Potential at Any Location
Energies 2017, 10(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/en10010021 - 24 Dec 2016
Abstract
Precooling a building overnight during the summer is a low cost practice that may provide significant help in decreasing energy demand and shaving peak loads in buildings. The effectiveness of precooling depends on the weather patterns at the location, however research in this [...] Read more.
Precooling a building overnight during the summer is a low cost practice that may provide significant help in decreasing energy demand and shaving peak loads in buildings. The effectiveness of precooling depends on the weather patterns at the location, however research in this field is predominantly focused in the building thermal response alone. This paper proposes an analytical tool for assessing the precooling potential through simulations from real data in a numerical weather prediction platform. Three dimensionless ratios are developed based on the meteorological analysis and the concept of degree hours that provide an understanding of the precooling potential, utilization and theoretical value. Simulations were carried out for five sites within the Sydney (Australia) metro area and it was found that they have different responses to precooling, depending on their proximity to the ocean, vegetation coverage, and urban density. These effects cannot be detected when typical meteorological year data or data from weather stations at a distance from the building were used. Results from simulations in other Australian capitals suggest that buildings in continental and temperate climates have the potential to cover substantial parts of the cooling loads with precooling, assuming appropriate infrastructure is in place. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Open AccessArticle
Electrodeposited Magnesium Nanoparticles Linking Particle Size to Activation Energy
Energies 2016, 9(12), 1073; https://doi.org/10.3390/en9121073 - 16 Dec 2016
Cited by 9
Abstract
The kinetics of hydrogen absorption/desorption can be improved by decreasing particle size down to a few nanometres. However, the associated evolution of activation energy remains unclear. In an attempt to clarify such an evolution with respect to particle size, we electrochemically deposited Mg [...] Read more.
The kinetics of hydrogen absorption/desorption can be improved by decreasing particle size down to a few nanometres. However, the associated evolution of activation energy remains unclear. In an attempt to clarify such an evolution with respect to particle size, we electrochemically deposited Mg nanoparticles on a catalytic nickel and noncatalytic titanium substrate. At a short deposition time of 1 h, magnesium particles with a size of 68 ± 11 nm could be formed on the nickel substrate, whereas longer deposition times led to much larger particles of 421 ± 70 nm. Evaluation of the hydrogen desorption properties of the deposited magnesium nanoparticles confirmed the effectiveness of the nickel substrate in facilitating the recombination of hydrogen, but also a significant decrease in activation energy from 56.1 to 37.8 kJ·mol−1 H2 as particle size decreased from 421 ± 70 to 68 ± 11 nm. Hence, the activation energy was found to be intrinsically linked to magnesium particle size. Such a reduction in activation energy was associated with the decrease of path lengths for hydrogen diffusion at the desorbing MgH2/Mg interface. Further reduction in particle size to a few nanometres to remove any barrier for hydrogen diffusion would then leave the single nucleation and growth of the magnesium phase as the only remaining rate-limiting step, assuming that the magnesium surface can effectively catalyse the dissociation/recombination of hydrogen. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Open AccessArticle
AC Voltage Control of DC/DC Converters Based on Modular Multilevel Converters in Multi-Terminal High-Voltage Direct Current Transmission Systems
Energies 2016, 9(12), 1064; https://doi.org/10.3390/en9121064 - 15 Dec 2016
Cited by 2
Abstract
The AC voltage control of a DC/DC converter based on the modular multilevel converter (MMC) is considered under normal operation and during a local DC fault. By actively setting the AC voltage according to the two DC voltages of the DC/DC converter, the [...] Read more.
The AC voltage control of a DC/DC converter based on the modular multilevel converter (MMC) is considered under normal operation and during a local DC fault. By actively setting the AC voltage according to the two DC voltages of the DC/DC converter, the modulation index can be near unity, and the DC voltage is effectively utilized to output higher AC voltage. This significantly decreases submodule (SM) capacitance and conduction losses of the DC/DC converter, yielding reduced capital cost, volume, and higher efficiency. Additionally, the AC voltage is limited in the controllable range of both the MMCs in the DC/DC converter; thus, over-modulation and uncontrolled currents are actively avoided. The AC voltage control of the DC/DC converter during local DC faults, i.e., standby operation, is also proposed, where only the MMC connected on the faulty cable is blocked, while the other MMC remains operational with zero AC voltage output. Thus, the capacitor voltages can be regulated at the rated value and the decrease of the SM capacitor voltages after the blocking of the DC/DC converter is avoided. Moreover, the fault can still be isolated as quickly as the conventional approach, where both MMCs are blocked and the DC/DC converter is not exposed to the risk of overcurrent. The proposed AC voltage control strategy is assessed in a three-terminal high-voltage direct current (HVDC) system incorporating a DC/DC converter, and the simulation results confirm its feasibility. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Open AccessArticle
A Hybrid Modular Multilevel Converter with Partial Embedded Energy Storage
Energies 2016, 9(12), 1012; https://doi.org/10.3390/en9121012 - 30 Nov 2016
Cited by 3
Abstract
Modular and cascaded multilevel converters provide a functional solution for the integration of energy storage systems (ESSs). This paper develops a hybrid multilevel converter based on the modular multilevel converter (MMC) that can be functionally extended with partial embedded ESS as a fraction [...] Read more.
Modular and cascaded multilevel converters provide a functional solution for the integration of energy storage systems (ESSs). This paper develops a hybrid multilevel converter based on the modular multilevel converter (MMC) that can be functionally extended with partial embedded ESS as a fraction of the overall converter power rating. The configuration, which can operate as a typical DC-AC converter, enables multi-directional power flow between the DC- and AC-side of the converter, as well as the embedded energy storage elements. The use of a three-phase flying-capacitor submodule eliminates the second-order harmonic oscillations present in modular cascaded multilevel converters. Current, voltage and power control are discussed in the paper while simulation results illustrate the operation of the hybrid MMC as a DC-AC converter in a typical inverter application and the additional functions and control of the embedded ESS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Open AccessArticle
Optimal Sizing of Vanadium Redox Flow Battery Systems for Residential Applications Based on Battery Electrochemical Characteristics
Energies 2016, 9(10), 857; https://doi.org/10.3390/en9100857 - 22 Oct 2016
Cited by 12
Abstract
The penetration of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems in residential areas contributes to the generation and usage of renewable energy. Despite its advantages, the PV system also creates problems caused by the intermittency of renewable energy. As suggested by researchers, such problems deteriorate the [...] Read more.
The penetration of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems in residential areas contributes to the generation and usage of renewable energy. Despite its advantages, the PV system also creates problems caused by the intermittency of renewable energy. As suggested by researchers, such problems deteriorate the applicability of the PV system and have to be resolved by employing a battery energy storage system (BESS). With concern for the high investment cost, the choice of a cost-effective BESS with proper sizing is necessary. To this end, this paper proposes the employment of a vanadium redox flow battery (VRB), which possesses a long cycle life and high energy efficiency, for residential users with PV systems. It further proposes methods of computing the capital and maintenance cost of VRB systems and evaluating battery efficiency based on VRB electrochemical characteristics. Furthermore, by considering the cost and efficiency of VRB, the prevalent time-of-use electricity price, the solar feed-in tariff, the solar power profile and the user load pattern, an optimal sizing algorithm for VRB systems is proposed. Simulation studies are carried out to show the effectiveness of the proposed methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Open AccessArticle
Water Storage Instead of Energy Storage for Desalination Powered by Renewable Energy—King Island Case Study
Energies 2016, 9(10), 839; https://doi.org/10.3390/en9100839 - 19 Oct 2016
Cited by 6
Abstract
In this paper, we scrutinized the energy storage options used in mitigation of the intermittent nature of renewable energy resources for desalination process. In off-grid islands and remote areas, renewable energy is often combined with appropriate energy storage technologies (ESTs) to provide a [...] Read more.
In this paper, we scrutinized the energy storage options used in mitigation of the intermittent nature of renewable energy resources for desalination process. In off-grid islands and remote areas, renewable energy is often combined with appropriate energy storage technologies (ESTs) to provide a consistent and reliable electric power source. We demonstrated that in developing a renewable energy scheme for desalination purposes, product (water) storage is a more reliable and techno-economic solution. For a King Island (Southeast Australia) case-study, electric power production from renewable energy sources was sized under transient conditions to meet the dynamic demand of freshwater throughout the year. Among four proposed scenarios, we found the most economic option by sizing a 13 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) field to instantly run a proportional RO desalination plant and generate immediate freshwater in diurnal times without the need for energy storage. The excess generated water was stored in 4 × 50 ML (mega liter) storage tanks to meet the load in those solar deficit times. It was also demonstrated that integrating well-sized solar PV with wind power production shows more consistent energy/water profiles that harmonize the transient nature of energy sources with the water consumption dynamics, but that would have trivial economic penalties caused by larger desalination and water storage capacities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Open AccessArticle
Flexible Yttrium Coordination Geometry Inhibits “Bare-Metal” Guest Interactions in the Metal-Organic Framework Y(btc)
Energies 2016, 9(10), 836; https://doi.org/10.3390/en9100836 - 18 Oct 2016
Abstract
Y(btc) (btc = 1,3,5-benzenetricarboxylate) is a metal-organic framework that exhibits significant adsorption of industrially-relevant gases such as H2, CH4, and O2. Previous studies have noted a surprising lack of close interactions between the adsorbed guest molecules and [...] Read more.
Y(btc) (btc = 1,3,5-benzenetricarboxylate) is a metal-organic framework that exhibits significant adsorption of industrially-relevant gases such as H2, CH4, and O2. Previous studies have noted a surprising lack of close interactions between the adsorbed guest molecules and Y, despite the apparent availability of a “bare-metal” binding site. We have extended our previous work in a detailed investigation of the adsorption behaviours of CO2, CD4, and O2 in Y(btc) over a range of concentrations using in situ neutron powder diffraction methods. The O–Y–O bond angles enclosing the bare-metal site are found to change considerably depending on the type and quantity of guest molecules present. Multiple binding sites are found for each guest species, and the largest changes in O–Y–O angles are accompanied by changes in the filling sequences of the binding sites, pointing to an important interplay between guest-induced framework distortions and binding site accessibility. These results suggest the potential for coordinatively flexible rare-earth metal centres to promote guest-selective binding in metal-organic frameworks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
One-Dimensional TiO2 Nanostructured Photoanodes: From Dye-Sensitised Solar Cells to Perovskite Solar Cells
Energies 2016, 9(12), 1030; https://doi.org/10.3390/en9121030 - 06 Dec 2016
Cited by 9
Abstract
This review presents one dimensional (1D) TiO2 nanostructured photoanodes for next generation solar cells such as dye-sensitised solar cells (DSCs) and perovskite solar cells (PSCs). Due to the unique morphological properties, 1D TiO2 nanostructures can act as express electron channels as [...] Read more.
This review presents one dimensional (1D) TiO2 nanostructured photoanodes for next generation solar cells such as dye-sensitised solar cells (DSCs) and perovskite solar cells (PSCs). Due to the unique morphological properties, 1D TiO2 nanostructures can act as express electron channels as well as light scattering layer, leading to improved charge transport properties, such as charge separation, electron injection, and electron lifetime, and light harvesting efficiency. As 1D TiO2 nanostructures are applied to solar cells, 1D TiO2 nanostructures should be further modified to overcome some drawbacks. In this review, we have described some solutions by introducing various 1D TiO2 synthetic methods and device fabrication processes for solar cell applications, where we have described some important surface engineering and hierarchical device design strategies that facilitate charge transport and light utilisation in 1D TiO2 nanostructured photoanode system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Open AccessReview
An Overview of Modeling Approaches Applied to Aggregation-Based Fleet Management and Integration of Plug-in Electric Vehicles †
Energies 2016, 9(11), 968; https://doi.org/10.3390/en9110968 - 18 Nov 2016
Cited by 6
Abstract
The design and implementation of management policies for plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) need to be supported by a holistic understanding of the functional processes, their complex interactions, and their response to various changes. Models developed to represent different functional processes and systems are [...] Read more.
The design and implementation of management policies for plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) need to be supported by a holistic understanding of the functional processes, their complex interactions, and their response to various changes. Models developed to represent different functional processes and systems are seen as useful tools to support the related studies for different stakeholders in a tangible way. This paper presents an overview of modeling approaches applied to support aggregation-based management and integration of PEVs from the perspective of fleet operators and grid operators, respectively. We start by explaining a structured modeling approach, i.e., a flexible combination of process models and system models, applied to different management and integration studies. A state-of-the-art overview of modeling approaches applied to represent several key processes, such as charging management, and key systems, such as the PEV fleet, is then presented, along with a detailed description of different approaches. Finally, we discuss several considerations that need to be well understood during the modeling process in order to assist modelers and model users in the appropriate decisions of using existing, or developing their own, solutions for further applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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Open AccessReview
Perovskite Solar Cells: Progress and Advancements
Energies 2016, 9(11), 861; https://doi.org/10.3390/en9110861 - 25 Oct 2016
Cited by 30
Abstract
Organic–inorganic hybrid perovskite solar cells (PSCs) have emerged as a new class of optoelectronic semiconductors that revolutionized the photovoltaic research in the recent years. The perovskite solar cells present numerous advantages include unique electronic structure, bandgap tunability, superior charge transport properties, facile processing, [...] Read more.
Organic–inorganic hybrid perovskite solar cells (PSCs) have emerged as a new class of optoelectronic semiconductors that revolutionized the photovoltaic research in the recent years. The perovskite solar cells present numerous advantages include unique electronic structure, bandgap tunability, superior charge transport properties, facile processing, and low cost. Perovskite solar cells have demonstrated unprecedented progress in efficiency and its architecture evolved over the period of the last 5–6 years, achieving a high power conversion efficiency of about 22% in 2016, serving as a promising candidate with the potential to replace the existing commercial PV technologies. This review discusses the progress of perovskite solar cells focusing on aspects such as superior electronic properties and unique features of halide perovskite materials compared to that of conventional light absorbing semiconductors. The review also presents a brief overview of device architectures, fabrication methods, and interface engineering of perovskite solar cells. The last part of the review elaborates on the major challenges such as hysteresis and stability issues in perovskite solar cells that serve as a bottleneck for successful commercialization of this promising PV technology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from 2nd Energy Future Conference)
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