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Innovation in Europe: Research and Results Energy Central and Eastern Europe Clean, Reliable Electricity for

Innovation in Europe: Research and Results

Innovation in Europe: Research and Results Energy Central and Eastern Europe Clean, Reliable Electricity for Remote

Energy Central and Eastern Europe

Research and Results Energy Central and Eastern Europe Clean, Reliable Electricity for Remote Villages Photovoltaic

Clean, Reliable Electricity for Remote Villages

Europe Clean, Reliable Electricity for Remote Villages Photovoltaic (PV) power plants are an attractive option for
Europe Clean, Reliable Electricity for Remote Villages Photovoltaic (PV) power plants are an attractive option for
Photovoltaic (PV) power plants are an attractive option for sup- plying electrical power to remote

Photovoltaic (PV) power plants are an attractive option for sup- plying electrical power to remote areas, but require an energy storage system to cover night- time, cloudy weather and peak time power demands. One stor- age system - micro PV-hydro technology - uses excess day- time-generated power to pump water uphill to reservoir tanks. Later requirements for electricity are met by piping the water back downhill through a turbine- driven generator. Pumped water represents a simpler and more reliable means of storing energy than lead-acid batteries and has associated benefits. A computer model has been developed to optimise the design and control of micro PV-hydro systems.

Above: The photovoltaic field at Donoussa Island (Cyclades islands, Greece).

field at Donoussa Island (Cyclades islands, Greece). I remote settlements, where connecting to distant mains

I remote settlements, where connecting to

distant mains grid would be difficult and

expensive, using sunshine to generate elec- tricity - through the use of photovoltaic (PV) panels - is already an economic option. Several demonstration PV plants can be found around Europe. They meet daytime electricity demand, and are equipped with lead-acid batteries to store energy for night- time requirements. Batteries, however, are expensive, heavy and contain corrosive materials. They also have a short life, partic- ularly if not maintained. Some village PV plants have failed for this reason, even though the PV panels themselves remain good for 20 years or more with little atten- tion. The focus of this project has been to develop a better way of storing energy in remote PV systems, using pumped water, by improving their design and power efficiency.

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Micro PV-hydro power

A computer model of a PV-hydro system

has been developed and used in the design and testing of two pilot systems, located on remote European islands.

“Pumped water is an attractive method of storing energy in remote areas. Unlike batteries, it has almost unlimited storage life and is clean,” project coordinator, Prof. Spyros Kyritsis, of the Agricultural University of Athens, explains. “Pumped water systems are easy to understand and supply extra drinking and irrigation water, making the technology popular with the inhabitants.”

System components

The main components of a micro PV-hydro system are its PV panels, water pump (which also functions as a generator, running in reverse when stored water is released), water turbine, power regulating equipment - to convert direct current (DC) from the PV panels and turbine to alternat- ing current (AC) for the pump and village loads - water storage reservoirs and a system logic controller. Components were sourced from European companies. The PV array of 18kW peak is made up using 300 France PHOTON 60Wp PV panels. Siemens (Germany) supplied the 7.5kW DC generator for the water turbine, the power conditioning equipment and a programmable logic controller. In addition, two 150m 3 water reservoirs, 100m apart in height, were constructed at each location.

Energy management model

The system design and operation was optimised using a plant energy manage- ment model, which allows the simulation of the operation of all the constituent compo- nents and prediction of their combined performance. Input data for the model take the form of local solar radiation and temp- erature statistics. The village electrical load profiles for winter and summer were also estimated. The regulator action of distributing DC power between PV array,

The regulator action of distributing DC power between PV array, Sheet N o . 105E INCO

Sheet N o . 105E

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Innovation in Europe: Research and Results

 
   

Energy Central and Eastern Europe

 
 
 
The water storage reservoir

The water storage reservoir

   
 

Full Title:

Development of a stand-alone PV power system for remote villages, making use of pumped water energy storage:

an intelligent integration of a PV power system in a remote village with partial central and decentral PV power supply.

Information:

Prof. Spyros Kyritsis Agricultural University of Athens Agricultural Engineering Department 75 Iera Odos, 11855 Athens - Greece Tel.: +30 1 52 94001 Fax: +30 1 52 94023 e-mail: skir@auadec.aua. ariadne-t.gr

batteries, and inverter was simulated, as

concentrating on identifying suitable sites

was the performance of the inverter in

in their own countries and implementing

converting DC to AC. The pump and turbine

the project’s design methodology. A measure

efficiency characteristics were allowed for in

the energy management model, together

of the effectiveness of the collaboration is

that partners have been awarded a further

Partners:

Prime: Agricultural University of Athens (Greece)

with pipeline effects such as resistance to

EC INCO-Copernicus grant to continue to

water flow.

work together on construction and long

• Higher Institute of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering (Bulgaria)

Use of this model at the design stage allowed

term monitoring of micro PV-hydro plants.

the optimal sizing of components to ensure

high system efficiency. “Without the model,”

Says Prof. Kyritsis. “The system could only

Benefits

The pilot systems are in the process of

• Technical University, Brno (Czech Republic)

• Wirtschaft und Infrastruktur GmbH & Co Planungs KG (Germany)

have been designed to the best efficiency

being tested, but have already demonstrated

point of individual components. This would

their ability to meet the basic requirement

not give the best overall system efficiency.”

of supplying electricity needs reliably, cleanly

• Godollo University of Agricul- tural Sciences (Hungary)

• Research and Design Institute for Electrical Engineering (Romania)

• Sistemas, Analisis y Aplica- ciones Renovables S.L. (Spain)

The model, coupled with system monitor-

and at a realistic cost. In the longer term

ing, ensures that the plant consistently

there will be further economic benefits.

operates at the highest overall efficiency

“They will provide economic stimulus by

possible. Modelling can be applied to any

enabling villages to support more tourists

location, given appropriate local data.

and increase agricultural activity with the

extra water available for irrigation.” Says

Effective Collaboration

Prof. Kyritsis. “They are expected to reduce

• Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Spain)

This project successfully brought together

emigration from villages and encourage

Universities and consultants in Greece and

former residents to return, due to the im-

References:

the Canary Islands (who supervised inst-

proved quality of life.” Looking even further

CIPD CT93 0346; JOU20155

allation and monitoring) with renewable

into the future, Prof. Kyritsis sees the poss-

energy consultants from Germany (who

ibility of combining this technology with

Programme:

specialised in site selection and system

advanced sea water desalination techniques

PECO - 1993; JOULE II

design). Eastern European partners are now

to the benefit of arid coastal settlements.

INCO - INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION

July 97

European partners are now to the benefit of arid coastal settlements. ■ INCO - INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION