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Received September 29, 2019, accepted October 23, 2019, date of publication October 29, 2019,

date of current version November 11, 2019.

Digital Object Identifier 10.1109/ACCESS.2019.2950024

Electro-Hydrodynamic Design of an Intelligent

Balloon Water Gate Controlled by an Efficient
Maximum-Power-Seeking Controller
for a Solar Generation System
1 Civil Engineering Department, Babylon Technical Institute, Al Furat Al-Awsat Technical University, Kufa 54003, Iraq
2 Electrical and Electronic Engineering Department, University of Kerbala, Karbala 56001, Iraq
3 Petroleum Engineering Department, University of Kerbala, Karbala 56001, Iraq
Corresponding author: Najah M. L. Al Maimuri (inb.njh@atu.edu.iq)
This work was supported by personal funding of the authors.

ABSTRACT The intelligent balloon water gate (IBWG) invention is a hydraulic gate model made of
reinforced plastic that controls the water level (WL) downstream or upstream of a barrage. The IBWG
automatically inflates and deflates by compressed air to close and open the water passage, respectively.
The whole design consists of a balloon, a waterway, sensors, an air compressor, a control panel, an electrical
circuit and a photovoltaic generation (PVG) system. The Tyass barrage in Iraq was considered as a case study.
The Tyass barrage was built with concrete and four sliding steel water gates and redesigned using the IBWG.
The originality of the current research resides in the combination of the IBWG mechanism with an efficient
maximum power point (MPP) seeking controller for a photovoltaic generation system, which is one of the
most promising sources of renewable energy in the world. To the best of our knowledge, in this field, this
scenario has not yet been discussed in detail. Upper and lower water sensors are used to control the IBWG.
The upper sensor sends a signal to the control panel when the downstream water level reaches its maximum
value to open the air inlet valve and close the outlet valve, inflating 14 IBWGs with a volume of 3.5 m3
under 122 psi of pressure and closing the water passage. When the WL decreases below the minimum level,
the lower sensor initiates the opposite procedure. The air compressor automatically fills the air tank to 181 psi
and is supplied by a 24 VDC AGM rechargeable battery with a capacity of 40-60 Ah, which is charged by
four solar panels connected in parallel and exposed to an average of 8.8 hrs/day of sunshine. The proposed
MPP-seeking controller was implemented by a backstepping design coupled with the grey wolf mechanism.
The solar irradiance data were observed 39 years ago. The proposed controller is capable of following the
MPP with minimum oscillations under an external irradiance variation. The IBWG system is verified at night
or during the early morning when the sun is not active. Nevertheless, it is possible to store compressed air
in an auxiliary tank to avoid emergencies such as partial shading conditions.

INDEX TERMS Electro-hydrodynamic rubber water gate, PVG system, backstepping technique, grey wolf
optimization, lyapunov stability.

I. INTRODUCTION needed. In the past, sliding and radial steel gates were used in
Although traditional water gates play a significant role in the the design of dams but had many drawbacks such as difficulty
design of water dams and barrages, new developments either fitting with the rubber seals and the requirement of con-
in the operation technology or in the power supply are still tinuous maintenance, which were accompanied by extreme
problems when the hydraulic structure operated and damage
The associate editor coordinating the review of this manuscript and caused by corrosion and oxidation. Also, the electricity and
approving it for publication was Muhammad Imran Tariq . manpower sources are problematic in traditional water gates.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License. For more information, see http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
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The search for another style of water gate and an inexpen- model MODFLOW. It is found that river stages of 2-3 m
sive and environmentally friendly energy source becomes on Jan 2000 to Dec 2002 occurre, causing an increase in
editable. The IBWG represents a new style of hydraulic gate, the water recharge of 7.15-34.06 million m3/a and a ten
with an inexpensive and environmentally friendly energy per cent potential evaporation of the increased recharge due
source, low initial and continuous maintenance costs, and no to the construction of four inflatable dams. [2] presented a
manpower requirement, and a leap in scientific progress. numerical model o a rubber dam to solve a flow problem and
Until no, no attempts have achieved this technology; how- a static and dynamic structural analysis. 3D fluid-structure
ever, many researchers have worked on ancient and tradi- interactions for hydrostatic and overflow conditions under
tional studies relevant to hydraulic gates, such as [1], which different upstream and downstream pressures. The results
presented a rubber dam monitoring system for a dam con- included a comparison between the height, profile and cross-
structed in Shandong Province. SIEMENS PLC employed sectional area of a rubber dam with former studies, which
fuzzy technology to control water levels. A fuzzy controller showed acceptable agreement, and the dam height was a
algorithm significantly increases water level control. [2] anal- function of the modulus of elasticity, foundation thickness,
ysed base, static and dynamic flows simultaneously under and applied pressures.
both overflow and stable hydrostatic conditions correspond- Since 2014, there have been no serious developments
ing to various internal pressures of the upstream and down- for rubber dams.However, considering our priorities for the
stream water levels o an inflatable cylindrical dam. The IBWG, the design of intelligent dams and barrages can be
height, cross-sectional profile and cross-sectional area results introduced as new development to serve humanity.
showed good agreement with formal studies. [3] developed a Because the IBWG operates mainly on photovoltaic power,
numerical model for cylindrical membrane inflation using the electric sensors, energy storage batteries, and control panels,
Euler-Lagrangian method. The vortex and wave systems pro- it is necessary to design a suitable circuit for its operation.
duced between a jet flow and membrane were observed inside In [10], [11], various projects and studies addressed pho-
the membrane. The oscillation and bumps of the membrane tovoltaic systems. The solar system is considered to be a
performance were also studied. [4] employed an analysis favourable green energy source due to its many benefits, such
technique involving a well-established form-finding method as its low working cost, maintenance-free operation and envi-
and dynamic relaxation for inflatable dam cross-sectional ronmentally friendly nature. To the best of our knowledge,
analysis. The system was analysed under different pressures the researchers did not take into consideration the effects of
and loading support conditions. The results were in good the power cable on the dynamic performance of photovoltaic
agreement with the literature. [5] evaluated the hydraulic generation systems. It is considered that the DC/DC converter
structure of an inflatable circular weir in fully inflated to is coupled nearest to the photovoltaic array [12]. The power
almost fully deflated positions for varying diameters and cables are not long enough to produce a change in the PV
discharges. Three weirs 100, 250 an 300 cm in diameter voltage and current values. In reality, there are cases where
were tested in a 2 m wide flume. Three pressure sensor the length between the PV panel site and the chopper circuits
were fixed on the weir surfaces with angles of 0◦ , 11.25◦ is considerable, notably at the site of a water dam, which is
and 22.5◦ from the top to the downstream level. The results one of the most applied studies with a partially shaded PV
showed that the curvature arc hasan insignificant effect on array [13].
the inflatable weir performanc, except for a reduction in the Most photovoltaic energy systems have a problem with
water affluxes. [6] invented a portable water-filled barrier achieving the most significant power extraction and trans-
consisting of internal cells to imitate a sand dyke and sup- ferring the power from the generation side to the customers.
ported by rigid stepsthat allow barrier traversal. Nanofiber The complexity resides in the nonlinear behaviour of the
offers flexibility in the barrier cells and prevents punctured voltage-current characteristics of the PV modules. These
cells from deflating the surrounding cells. Some structures characteristics are affected by weather fluctuations. Many
may be filled first with air, positioned and then filled with researchers and scientific contributions have studied this
water by purging the air by a pressure valve to function as a problem and discussed it from different perspectives [14].
water dam. [7] invented a portable-water-filled module that One of these contributions considered the extraction of
was convenient for use in inflatable dams. The module also the highest power from the solar array according to different
consisted of flexible cells that could not be punctured. The power-seeking techniques proposed by [15], [16]. Addition-
side parts of the module can interlock with adjacent modules. ally, alternative approaches used evolutionary and hybrid
The steps were also attached via light and flexible nanofiber algorithm techniques to extract the parameters of the PV
walls. [8], with the same system as [6], provided inflatable module and adaptive control given in [17] .
water front and back panels. The essential function was to The IBWG is an invention that is used to adjust and control
increase the friction with the ground and protect and support water flow through hydraulic barrages, culverts, and water
the levelling materials to realis an extended dam system. [9] tunnels; it is a type of submerged gate as classified by [18] and
analysed the effect of a rubber dam on the potential recharge made of a fibre rubber balloon of any size. The gate inflates
and evaporation in the Baihe River in Henan Province, China, and deflates into a specified space inside a chamber to close
by using a hydraulic model, HEC-RAS and the groundwater and open a waterway, respectively. Various designs for gates

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and dams have been used around the world, but the IBWG is
yet unknown for our expectations.
Nevertheless, hydraulic dams and nuclear reactors are the
most critical and dangerous economic structures affecting
human life worldwide. Dams made of earth, concrete, brick,
masonry and other traditional materials have many draw-
backs, such as a high initial cost, continuous high mainte-
nance costs, and top safety factors, which lead to significant
concerns and fears for the population living in the geographi-
cal area exposed to the dangers of these structures. Briefly,
a search for new models of hydraulic dams characterised
by new technical advances is strongly needed. The problem
of many dams around the world experiencing collapse and
deterioration due to the soil permeability-increasing beyond
the allowable limits, which occurred in Al-Mosul Dam in the
north of Iraq in 2016, is one of the primary goals of this
The basic idea of an IBWG arose from the problems and
inadequate performance of conventional barrages, which are
usually responsible for regulating water levels in rivers. The
operation of barrages strictly requires accurate performance
and no human intervention to avoid the manipulation of
the administrative water allocations of streams and farms.
Also, alternative energy sources, such as solar, wind and
hydropower energy, may be chosen to power the IBWG since
at least one of these sources will be available everywhere
around the world. It is worth mentioning that the IBWG is
made of reinforced plastic that has a long life since it is
FIGURE 1. (a) Inflating phase. (b) Deflating phase.
unexposed to direct sunshine and fits well with the chamber
walls to prevent water leakage.
The whole idea of the IBGW operation can be summarised
as follows: signals are sent by two sensors installed at the the whole body is firmly fixed in place, allowing the gates
upper and lower water levels as needed behind a barrage body to move freely upward/downward to control the water flow,
to an electrical control panel to inflate and deflate the IBWG as shown in FIGURE 1. The deflating phase shown in
by a standby air compressor powered by a 24 V battery. This FIGURE 1a indicates that the gate is inflating, and the deflat-
process results in an automatic consecutive closing and open- ing phase is indicated in FIGURE 1b. The balloon is con-
ing of the barrage water tunnel, which continuously maintain nected to the inlet and outlet air valves by an air pipe. The
the water level oscillating between the allowable upper and whole body of the balloon represents a part of the dam
lower water levels. structure. The concrete walls (chamber) surround the balloon
The remainder of this paper is organized as follows. from all sides, as shown in FIGURE 1.
Section II presents the material and methods for the design
of a robust IBWG system considering the hydraulic structure B. PECULIARITIES OF THE IBWG
of the IBWG model. Section III addresses the results and The innovative part of the IBWG lies in the operation of a
discussions, including the hydromechanical part and numeri- large and dangerous structure by a 24 V battery energized
cal simulation results for the electrical part. The conclusions by a PVG system without the need for human interven-
and remarks are described in section IV. Finally, a list of tion. Typically, to operate such structures, high electrical
references is given in section V. energy absorption, manpower and continuous maintenance
are needed.
The IBWG is distinguished by the following peculiarities: -
II. MATERIALS AND METHODS 1- It has low initial and maintenance costs compared to
A. HYDRAULIC STRUCTURE OF THE IBWG MODEL traditional steel water gates.
The adapted dam model can be made of any material (steel, 2- It has very high flexibility in the inflating phase, providing
concrete, bricks, etc.) with rubber gates. The model consists recurrent absorption of the water hammer for a sudden
of a rubber balloon of a specified size and is firmly fixed closing; in contrast, steel gates require additional thick-
inside the steel structure by a suitable technique. Although ness in the iron to resist water hammer effects, resulting
the entire dam may consist of one or more balloon gates, in excessive weight and high operational electrical power.

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3- The problems associated with oxidation and corrosion do

not exist for the IBGW, which significantly reduces the
age of water gates made of iron.
4- The rubber structure of the IBWG fits well with the dam
body construction materials to prevent water leakage; in
contrast, iron gates should be designed and fixed firmly
with rubber seals through the dam structure, resulting in
a problematic upward and downward movement and high
corresponding electrical energy absorption.
5- The problems associated with the continuous replacement
of the rubber seals and joints in the iron gates do not
exist. In such cases, dams need additional water passages
for maintenance intervals, which in turn considerably
increases the coasts of such dams.
6- It may be powered by different types of alternative electri-
cal energy, e.g., solar, wind and hydro-power generation.
7- It operates automatically without using human resources.
8- It is installed below the water surface for protection
against floating debris and direct solar radiation heating,
which certainly increases the operating age.
9- During the inflation process, it flexibly expands without
generating outside air cavities that produce vacuum pres-
sure and hydrodynamic vortices to obstruct the water flow
through the dam water passage. In contrast, air cavitation
and the resulting vortices in traditional iron gates will dis-
sipate a lot of the total energy of the hydraulic system and
hence cause a flow obstruction, as shown in FIGURE 2. FIGURE 2. (a) Iron sliding gate fixed at the floor of water passage,
producing air cavities and vacuum pressures. (b) Iron sliding gate fixed at
the ceiling of water passage, producing air cavities and vacuum pressures.
The exit speed of the water can be predicted by applying 1) HYDROSTATIC PRESSURE
the Bernoulli equation at two points (a and b), as shown in Referring to FIGURE 3a, when the balloon gate is in
FIGURE 3a, within the fluid flow, the closed phase, the system becomes completely static,
and Bernoulli’s equation for the incompressible version of
Pa v2 Pb v2 equation 1 is:
+ a + ha = + b + hb (1)
γw 2g γw 2g If equation (1) is applied at points a and b, it is reduced to:

where Pa and Pb are the hydraulic pressures at points a and b, Pb = γw Ha (4)

respectively, va and vb are the water flow velocities at points
where Pb is the upward hydrostatic water pressure under the
a and b, respectively, in units of m/sec, ha and hb are the
balloon gate in units of kg/m2 .
elevations of points a and c for a particular datum, g is the
gravitational acceleration, and γw is the water-specific weight
in units of kg/m3 . Referring to FIGURE 3b, Equation (1)
reduces to: The estimation of the hydrodynamic pressure requires start-
ing with the Navier stock equation [19] in its compact form:
vc = c 2g(Ha − z/2) (2) ∂
(ρu) +∇. (ρu ∗ u) = −∇.pI+∇.τ + ρg (5)
where vc is the exit speed, C is the exit gate coefficient, which
where u, ρ, I, andτ are the flow speed, fluid density, inertia
is close to 0.6, Ha is the hydrodynamic head and z is the exit
force, and shear force, respectively.
gate opening height.
The momentum force acting at point b shown in FIGURE 3
According to the fluid momentum, the discharge is:-
may be obtained by using the unsteady momentum equation
Q = ac vc (3) of the fluid flow field in the extended form in the x-direction:
∂ ∂ ∂ ∂
ρvx = − ρvx vx + ρvy vx + ρvz vx
∂ ∂ ∂ ∂p
The balloon gate should intuitively be pressurized to resist
− τxx+ τyx+ τzx − + ρgx (6)
two types of hydraulic pressures, which are given as follows. ∂x ∂y ∂z ∂x
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Initially, when the IBWG inflates to close the water pas-

sage, only the momentum force exists and should be resisted
by the inflating pressure of the IBWG that shuts the water
passage; therefore, it should be exactly estimated as follows: -
If vin equals vb (the velocity of the water under the gate),
the uplift force in the open phase is equal to: -
The hydrodynamic pressure is ρQvb /ab , where ab is the
bottom area of the gate.
To minimize the hydrodynamic pressure under the gate
when it is fully open, the right term of equation five should be
minimized by reducing the ratio ( avbb ). This is fulfilled if ab ≥
vin , depending on the design priorities and the circumstances
of the case study.  
Accordingly, if avbb = 1, the net uplift hydrodynamic
pressure beneath the gate reduces to

The hydrodynamic pressure is ρQ. (9)

The designed hydrodynamic pressure is ρQF, (10)

where F is a factor of safety.

The Tyass barrage in Hashymia city, in the middle of Iraq,
was built on the Hilla River as shown in FIGURE 4. This
barrage was selected as a case study. The barrage was built
initially by concrete to control the D/S water levels between
23 m and 24 m asl to supply the necessary water allocations
to local streams, namely, the Kids, Khamisiya, Awadel and
Al-Zabbar streams. Although the barrage is used to feed the
forgoing local streams, it usually passes a discharge equal to
100 m3 /s downstream of the river. In this study, the barrage
will be redesigned corresponding to the IBWG.


Briefly, two kinds of emergencies can possibly occur during
the normal operation of the IBWG: -
1- A sudden puncture.
2- Electrical faults.
FIGURE 3. (a) Structural closed phase. (b) Structural open phase. Although the IBWG is submerged below the water surface
to avoid punctures by sharp floating objects, reserves were
According to FIGURE 3b, Equation (6) is abbreviated as implemented by providing the balloon room with a spare
Equation (7): balloon to act as a standby when a puncture occurred.
To carry out emergency maintenance, the new watercourse
Fmomentum = ρQ(vin − vout ) (7)
of the Hilla River should be completely closed and temporar-
where: ρ is the water density ton , Q is the discharge ms , ily substituted by the old course, as shown in Figure 4.
m3 The barrage is a type of hydraulic dams does not function
and vin and vout are the inlet velocity in the y-direction and
to store rainwater but functions to control the upstream and
outlet velocity in the x-direction, respectively.
downstream water levels.
In the particular case of Figure 2b and before the gate starts
to open, both vin and vout are zero due to the fluid being static,
which correspondingly results in a zero momentum force
on the gate bottom; however, as the gate opens, the upward Solar energy is regarded as the most important alternative
momentum force increases to reach its maximum value in the energy source in Iraq because the real sunshine periods are
open phase: more than 13 hr in summer accompanied by high tempera-
tures up to 50 C ◦ and 10 hr in winter with temperatures up to
Fmomentum = ρQvin (8) 25C ◦ during the day.

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FIGURE 4. Tyass barrage location.

FIGURE 6. Monthly average variation in solar energy in hrs/day for
39 years of historical data.

FIGURE 5. Historical daily sunshine series in 2018.

The historical daily sunshine data series for the year 2018 is
presented in FIGURE 5, and the monthly average from
39 years ago from 1980 to 2018 is presented in FIGURE 6,
with a total average of 8.8 hrs/day. This clean and inexpensive
form of energy is promising for energizing the gate with the FIGURE 7. IBWG components of the Tyass barrage.
necessary energy requirements.

1) STRUCTURAL COMPONENTS OF THE INTELLIGENT 3- The air system includes a blowing motor, an air compres-
BARRAGE sor, pipes, air inlet and outlet valves for each gate and a
The intelligent Barrage structure consists of the following 100 m3 air bottle.
elements, as shown in Figure 7. 4- The electrical system includes four solar panels coupled
1- A barrage body including a chamber in which the balloon with the MPP-seeking controller, ultrasonic water level
inflates and deflates and a waterway tunnel. sensors, a 24 V rechargeable battery, a control panel and
2- A rubber balloon gate. an electronic circuit.

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The downstream section of the dam is provided with two The direct conversion of solar energy into electrical power
water sensors: one sensor is assigned to the maximum water is obtained by solar cells. The physics of a photovoltaic cell,
level, and the other sensor is assigned to the minimum water or a solar cell, is similar to that of the classic (p-n) junction
level. When the downstream water level reaches its minimum diode. The relationship between the output voltage and the
value, the lower sensor instantaneously produces a signal load current of a photovoltaic cell or module is expressed as
to open the air outlet valve and allow the balloon gate to in [21].
empty the air and deflate, allowing the water passing through
the tunnel to supply the downstream water according to the H. IBWG ENERGIZING
requirements. The water flows until the downstream water The concept of the PV energy provided to the IBWG is
level reaches its maximum value; then, immediately, a signal dependent upon the following main points: -
is sent to close the outlet air valve and open the inlet air valve, 1- It should include renewable energy sources such as solar,
which allows the balloon to fill by the air compressor and wind and hydropower generation due to the scarcity of
closes the waterway. conventional electricity in Iraq and daily continuous con-
current cuts.
3) PRESSURES UNDER THE GATE 2- The energy source should be inexpensive, clean and avail-
The balloon must resist two types of pressure in the closed able anywhere around the world.
and open phases: In Iraq, the preceding three types of energy sources are
1- The hydrostatic pressure in the closed phase using available, since solar radiation is strong and available in most
Equation (4). seasons. Cloudy weather is rarely encountered in winter and
2- The hydrodynamic pressure in the open phase using is non-existent in summer. However, solar energy and wind
equation (10). energy may also be used since Iraq has high eastern-western
and medium northern-southern winds, as outlined by [22].
4) P, V COMPRESSOR CAPACITY The author briefly indicated that solar and wind sources are
Let Pcomp and Pballoon be the pressures of the compressor renewable energy sources that can adequately supply elec-
and balloon before and after inflating the gate, respectively, trical power to villages in deserts and rural areas. In this
and Vcomp and Vballoon be the volumes of the compressor and research, one or more source may be used when necessary.
balloon, respectively; therefore, the PV system before and
after the deflating process is the same. Considering the I. MODELLING OF THE PHOTOVOLTAIC SOLAR ARRAY
Boyle–Mariotte law of gases, one concludes that:- The PV generator has several modules arranged in a series-
The product PV of the compressor before the inflating parallel configuration to meet the required voltage and current
process is Pcomp Vcomp .In addition, the product PV of the levels. The output voltage of a photovoltaic cell is [23], [24]:
system after the inflating process is Pballoon (Vcomp +Vballoon ).  
 q(VPv +Ipv Rs )
By equating the two quantities, one obtains: IPv = Npp Iph −Npp Isat exp − 1 (15)
(Vcomp + Vballoon ) IPh = Is.c − Ki (Tref − Ta ) K /1000
Pcomp = Pballoon (11)
Vcomp  3   
T q ∗ Ego 1 1
Isat = Irs exp − (17)
 
A rechargeable battery is usually needed for the cycle of the Is.c
positive and negative peaks of the energy curve. In applica- Irs =  n o (18)
tions, batteries are designed for the cycling process. The cor- exp AK T1a − Tref 1

responding number of batteries required for storage capacity

The series resistance with the diode cell is:
may be estimated by [20]:
Z Rs ≤ 0.001 (19)
The required battery is based on Max 1Pdt Is.c
Z The parallel resistance with the diode cell is:
−Min 1pdt (12) Vo.c
Rs ≥ 100 (20)
Storage Capacity Is.c
The number of batteries is (13)
0.8 ∗ Battery Capacity The voltage provided by a photovoltaic panel is computed as
The state of charge (SOC) is deduced from the battery power a nonlinear equation:
and efficiency: VPV = µ1 ln[1 − µ2 (IPV λ − µ3 λ)] − µ4 IPV λ (21)
SOC Bat = (Pcharge ∗ ηbattery − Pdischarge )dt (14) where Is.c is the saturation current, Tref is the reference tem-
perature, Ta is the actual temperature, Np is the number of

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TABLE 1. Solar panel technical specifications used in the proposed boost converter switch, Dopt , to extract the maximum solar
power from the PV solar generator system and maintain a
constant value that ensures a minimum steady-state oscilla-
tion using the grey wolf optimization technique:
L Vm E1
Dopt = 1 − − +h2 E2 −h1 cb E˙1 − i˙m + cb Vmr
Vo L cb

The system model defined by (22) and (23) is guaranteed

to be globally exponentially stable with time, i.e., as → ∞,
for sufficient positive design parameters, h1 , h2 > 0.

parallel cells, Ns is the number of series cells, A is a constant K. PROOF OF THE THEOREM
of 1.5, K is the Boltzmann factor, q is the electron charge, This study provides a formal analysis and elegant full proof
Ego is the gap energy, and µ1 , µ2 , µ3 , and µ4 are constant of the main theorem using the tools of Lyapunov stability
design parameters. The solar panel technical specifications control. The primary purpose of the peak-power-seeking con-
used in the proposed design are listed in TABLE 1. The troller is to implement a virtual control law and force it to con-
photovoltaic power PPV can be calculated using the following sider a stabilization function. For convenience, the time index
equation [25]: t is omitted. This technique can be applied using an accept-
able control scheme using the Lyapunov technique [27]–[29].
PPV = IPV .VPV (22) With this controller, the PV voltage applied to the DC cable
follows the reference voltage by acting on the duty cycle of
the boost converter switch.
Step 1: DC Voltage Regulator
The DC\DC boost converter is an essential topological ele- Let us consider the voltage seeking error:
ment in a photovoltaic generation system that is used as a
power electronic transformer between the photovoltaic array def
E1 = Vm − Vmr (26)
and the electrical load. This leads us to employ maximum
power-seeking as an approach to adjust the duty cycle. The where Vmr is the converter voltage reference. From the system
adjustment is attained by pulse width modulation and elec- model (26), substituting in (27), the result is:
tronic devices such as the MOSFET. To obtain the dynamics
of the DC/DC boost converter, one applies Kirchhoff’s laws ˙ = 1 (im − iL ) − Vmr
Ė1 = V˙m − Vmr ˙ (27)
to each of the circuit branches [26]. cb
 di
L 1 (1 − Dopt ) Let us choose the Lyapunov function W1 (E1 ) =
def 1 2

 = vm − vo 2 E1 ; the
 dt
 L L time derivative of W1 is:
dvm 1 (23)
= (im − iL )  

 dt cb 1 ˙
 Ẇ1 = E1 Ė1 = E1 (i − iL ) − Vmr (28)
cb m

where im is the current through the DC line, iL is the average By choosing

state of the inductor current in the DC/DC boost topology and
Dopt is the optimal duty cycle set by the optimization circuit 1 ˙ = −h1 E1
Ė1 = (i − iL ) − Vmr (29)
and expressed as the ratio of the ON switching time to the cb m
time required to complete a switching cycle. The output DC
This leads us to Ẇ1 = −h1 E12 < 0; as a result, the second sub-
voltage and current are expressed as, respectively:
system of (26) is globally asymptotically stable for h1 > 0.
vm The current passing through the inductor behaves as a virtual
vo = and Io = (1 − Dopt )im (24)
(1 − Dopt ) control input.
It is confirmed that the converter output voltage is higher Letting iL = iLr , one can obtain the stabilization function
than the converter input voltage if the duty cycle is bounded as:
in the interval {0, 1} . def ˙
iLr = h1 cb E1 + im − cb Vmr (30)
J. THEOREM (MAIN RESULT) Step 2: DC Current Regulator
Let us consider the system model described by the set of Let us consider the following new error defined as:
system differential equations given in (22) and (23). This
consideration leads us to choose an optimal duty cycle of the E2 = iL − iLr , (31)

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This represents the difference between the virtual control and

its reference signal. By substituting (31) into (29), the first
error dynamics become:
1 E2
Ė1 = (E2 − iLr − Vm ) − V˙o = − h1 E1 (32)
cb c1
Then, the time derivative of (32) is:
˙ = h1 cb E˙1 + i˙m − cb Vmr
iLr (33)

The first derivative of the second error system is:

def ˙ = Vm − 1 − Dopt Vo −h1 cb E˙1 − i˙m +cb Vmr
E˙2 = i˙L−iLr ¨

FIGURE 8. Block diagram of the proposed maximum-power-seeking
Define the augmented Lyapunov candidate function as controller.

def 1
W2 = W1 + E22 (35) TABLE 2. Hydraulic characteristics of the IBGWS of the tyass barrage.
and its time derivative as

Ẇ2 = Ẇ1 + E2 Ė2 = −h1 E12 + E2

" #
h2 E2 − 1 − Dopt VLo

× (36)
+ Vm − E1 − h1 cb E˙1 − i˙m + c1 Vmr
L c1

Consequently, the average duty cycle for the MPPT of the

boost converter is:
L Vm E1 ˙ ˙ ¨
Dopt = 1− − +h2 E2 − h1 cb E1 − im + cb Vmr
Vo L cb

h1 , h2 > 0 are considered to be positive design param-

eters, and the control law given in (37) ensures that Consequently, the fitness function of the grey wolf opti-
the time derivative of (36) is negative definite, i.e., mization technique is written as follows for the MPPT of the
Ẇ2 = −h1 E12 − h2 E22 < 0. boost converter:
This guarantees that the system model defined by (23) is P(Dkopti ) > P(Dk−1
opti ) (38)
globally asymptotically stable such that the first and second
error dynamics converge to zero as time progresses. The where, P is the extracted power, Dopt is the optimal duty
stability analysis of the closed loops is given in (32) and (34) cycle, i is the number of current grey wolves and k is the
and is proven based on Lyapunov theory. number of iterations.


In previous studies, grey wolf optimization has been used If the exit area is taken as ac = 2.2m2 (2 m in width and
recently to extract the most significant power provided by 1.1 m in height) and the factor of safety is 1.25, as indi-
PVG coupled with the IBWG system. A block diagram of the cated in Table 3, the exit velocity, discharge, hydrostatic and
proposed maximum-power-seeking scheme for the proposed hydrodynamic pressures can be estimated by equations (2, 3,
system is shown in FIGURE 8. The proposed maximum- 4 and 10), respectively. The results are pr3sented in TABLE 4.
power-seeking scheme measures VPV and IPV using measure-
ment devices and calculates the output power [30]. At the B. GATE SYSTEM DESIGN
maximum power, the duty cycle is maintained at a con- To pass the normal discharge of the Hilla River (100 m3 /s),
stant value that minimizes the steady–state oscillation, which fourteen IBWGs are required due to the specific discharge
is possible with classic tracking methods. Consequently, of each IBWG, as shown in Table 4. All of the gates may
the power loss produced by the oscillation is minimized, be connected to the air compressor for the inflating process,
which will increase the efficiency of the proposed system. as shown in Figure 8. The designer is free to combine two

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TABLE 3. Average solar irradiance of Hilla city (W/m2) [31].

FIGURE 9. Pressure, volume and connections of the compressor to the

14 IBWGs.

TABLE 4. Operation of the analogue-to-digital converter.

or more balloons to an air compressor as a separate unit

depending on the field conditions.
Since the balloon resists the hydrostatic and hydrodynamic
pressures consecutively, it was designed to resist the greatest
pressure. In the case of the Tyass barrage, the hydrodynamic FIGURE 10. Electronic switching of the control panel.
pressure of 122 psi is the maximum.

C. PRESSURE-VOLUME DESIGN OF THE 3.5m3 in volume as tabulated in TABLE 2 and shown in

The air compressor system should be adjusted according to The electronic switching of the control panel for the
the hydrodynamic pressure of the IBWG. The volume of the present study is illustrated in FIGURE 10, which gives an
air storage tank was chosen to be 100 m3 . The pressure of the overview of how the connections of the necessary compo-
air compressorwas estimated to be 181psi so that it would be nents are implemented to achieve an automated switching
capable of providing a balloon pressure of 122psi for 14 gates system to measure the water level and manage the operation

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of the IBWG successfully.Sound waves are emitted by an 2) RISKY OPERATION

efficient ultrasonic sensor, as shown in FIGURE 7. These When the signal of the upper sensor is received, the air
waves have reflected the sensor if there is liquid in front of inlet valve is opened and starts filling the balloons with the
the sensor. The sensor detects these waves and attempts to required 122 psi of compressed air. Accordingly, the com-
measure the time required to send and receive these waves. pressor engine starts to supply the balloons with compressed
The distance is then predicted by the time interval bounded air directly without the need for an air tank. The time required
by the water level and ultrasonic sensor. In this study, the air to increase the balloon pressure to 122 psi depends on the
compressor and the first valve are connected to the normally available solar and battery energy, which may be insufficient
open terminal of the second relay and interlocked with the to supply the required volume of 49 m3 with a pressure
normally closed contact of the first relay when the front dam of 122 psi, especially during the night.
is filled. Light-emitting diodes are a particular type of diode The disadvantages of this operation mode are as follows:
that converts electrical energy into light. Two light-emitting 1- The total battery power may be inadequate to supply
diodes are used in the switching circuit, which indicates the air system with enough time to increase the balloon
two levels of water in the IBWG. When the dam is filled, pressure to 122 psi.
the green LED blinks and the electronic relay switches on the 2- Supplying the required volume of air (49m3 ) with a pres-
air compressor. In this state, the first valve turns ON to close sure of 122 psi may require a long time, which is incon-
the balloon gate automatically. venient in critical cases.
The circuit diagram of the IBWT is shown in FIGURE 11a,
D. IBWG OPERATION while FIGURE 11b illustrates the MPPT block diagram for
It is guaranteed that the IBWG will work properly for many the PVG system.
logical reasons: - 1- The air pressure system consists of three solar cells con-
i The total average sunshine from 39 years ago is based nected in parallel, a 12 V 30 A battery and an air compres-
on historical data of 8.8 hrs/day, up to 13 hrs/day, with

sor with a capacity of >181 psi.
temperatures up to 50C that are capable of charging the 2- The control panel system consists of a control panel,
power batteries and running the IBWG day and night. two sensors, two electrical valves, connections and circuit
ii The IBWG is supplied with a standby air bottle of 100 m3 breakers.
in capacity and pressurized with 181 psi, which is 3- The electrical network arrangement requires a continuous
designed to sudden supply the 14 IBWGs with an air energy source, such as a solar power system. Since the
pressure of 122 psi. It is usually full and pressed when barrage is located in a region with long-duration sunshine
needed. Also, the IBWG does not open or close more than hour, a solar energy source is chosen. In the current study,
once a day under normal and emergency conditions. the average solar irradianc data of the Tyass barrage are
iii The mathematical modelling that is used to track the analysed for the years1980–2018, as listed in TABLE 3.
energy levels validates the gate operation. Consequently,the PV solar system is positioned between
However, there are two operation modes of the IBWG, which two geographical points, which are (44◦ 41’ N, 32◦ 21’ E)
are described as follows. and 44◦ 41 N, 32◦ 35 ’ E), using a GPS device. The photo-
voltaic generation system provides a rechargeable battery
1) SAFE OPERATION that is designed to power the air compressor and two
Since an alternative energy source is used to run the compres- electrical valves through the DC/DC converter, as shown
sor, energy scarcity may occur due to solar power shortages in FIGURE 11a and FIGURE 11b, respectively.
in winter and during sunset, especially at night. The use of a
large air pressure tank is safe, as presented in Figure 7. When IV. THE ELECTRICAL PART
the water levels are lower than the minimum, the air inlet A. AUTOMATIC OPERATION OF THE ELECTRICAL CIRCUIT
valves are automatically opened to supply the balloons with The operating mechanism of the balloon may be classified
the required air volume of 49 m3 under a pressure of 122 psi. into two essential parts:
The air compressor system consists of the 100 m3 air tank 1- In the charging process, the solar panels can charge the
under a pressure of 181 psi on standby for sudden use in safe rechargeable battery with the required electrical energy,
operation. which in turn supply the air compressor with the necessary
The air system must be arranged to be filled with com- power to inflate the balloon up to 122 psi according to the
pressed air to 181 psi continuously. The advantage of this upper-level sensor.
arrangement is that the air compressor may operate once or 2- In the operation process, when the downstream water
several times to supply the air tank with the required 181 psi level reaches the maximum level downstream of the river,
depending upon the available energy in the batteries. It is the upper sensor sends a signal to open the air inlet
worth mentioning that the air system may be operated several valve (valve 1) and simultaneously locks the air outlet
times to reach 181 psi. valve (valve 2) to enable the compressed air to inflate the

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TABLE 5. Backstepping controller and boost parameters.

TABLE 6. Features of the control panel and management system.

the proposed backstopping controller and boost parameters

are tabulated in TABLE 5.


To verify the effectiveness of the proposed maximum seeking
controller, a MATLAB simulation is performed considering
time variations in the solar irradiance and load level (an air
compressor with two valves). The behaviour of the suggested
system model is tested in terms of several parameters, such
FIGURE 11. Electrical circuit diagram of the IBWG system. (b)MPPT block as the PV generator voltage, PV current, DC/DC converter
diagram for the PVG system. output voltage and battery charging state. TABLE 6 lists the
technical specifications of the control panel and management
The dynamic response of the proposed controller, DC/DC
balloon up to 122 psi and close the waterway. Conversely, converter and optimization technique are verified through the
when the downstream water level reaches the minimum numerical simulation. The current-voltage curves of the PV
level, the lower sensor sends a signal to open the air exit array are shown in FIGURE 12 for varying solar irradiation
valve (valve 2) and instantaneously locks the air entry conditions.
valve (valve 1) to let the air leak out to deflate the balloon The suggested scheme was tested for real daily solar radi-
and open the waterway. ation scenarios in the PVG system, as shown in FIGURE 13.
The pressure switch sensors are used to measure the spec- FIGURE 6 shows the monthly average variation in solar
ified airflow in each balloon gate. The pressure switch sig- energy, measured in hrs/day, for the data from 39 years ago.
nals in each balloon are sent through an analogue-to-digital
converter to switch the air compressor. It is used to convert C. INVESTIGATION OF THE DC/DC CONVERTER
the pressure signals to six digits through an analogue-to- A validation o the DC/DC converter is carried out based on
digital converter, as shown in TABLE 4. One can control the the DC current and power output from the chopper circuit.
operation of the air pressure if all pressure switch sensors are FIGURE 14 shows the daily evaluation of the DC current
adjusted to the desired value. Inbrief,the design parameters of provided by the PV string coupled with the DC/DC converter.

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FIGURE 12. Current-voltage characteristics of the PV panel.

FIGURE 14. Daily evaluation current provided by the PV string.

FIGURE 13. Solar irradiance profile (W/m2 ) for Hilla city at 15/07/2018.
FIGURE 15. PV power extracted with the MPP-seeking controller.

FIGURE 15 shows the solar power extracted withthe MPP- affected by the profile of the solar irradiance, and the duty
seeking controller using (22). cycle bounded between 0.27 – 0.13, as shown in FIGURE 16.


The proposed controller is set to update the duty cycle of AIR COMPRESSOR
the boost converter by changing the atmospheric boundarie, One can observe that FIGURE 17 shows the profile for the
as hown in FIGURE 16. However, the time response of the typical case of the air compressor pressure bounded between
grey wolf optimization scheme is very fast when the solar 0-180 psi taking into consideration switching between ON
radiation is rapidly changed. At the maximum power, the duty and OFF, while FIGURE 18 shows the emergency case of the
cycle is maintained at a constant value that minimizes the air compressor pressure profile per day. The profile increases
steady-state oscillation. The profiles of the passing DC cur- over five minutes when increasing the pressure to 180 psi,
rent and power extracted with the MPP-seeking controller are remains constant and then decreases over five minutes as the

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N. M. L. Al Maimuri et al.: Electro-Hydrodynamic Design of an IBWG

FIGURE 16. The daily responsibilities of the duty cycle using the grey wolf FIGURE 18. Profile for the emergency case of the air compressor pressure.
optimization scheme.

FIGURE 19. Daily profile for the rechargeable battery charging state.

FIGURE 17. Profile for the typical case of the air compressor pressure.
irradiance. This result implies that the IBWG system can be
used at night or during the early morning when the sun is
pressure is decreased from 180 – 0 psi. It is worth emphasiz- not strong. Nevertheless, there is a possibility to store the
ing that the repetition cycles related to switching the ON and compressed air in the auxiliary tank to avoid emergency cases
OFF states depend on upstream and downstream of the dam. such as partial shading conditions.
The numerical simulation results show that the proposed
F. THE DYNAMIC PERFORMANCE OF THE MPP-seeking controller has a fast response time and a stable
RECHARGEABLE BATTERY output power provided by the rechargeable battery, although
FIGURE 19 shows the daily profile for the battery charging it is essential to note that weather conditions change rapidly.
state bounded between 25 - 77 percent depending on the rate This study considers the mathematical model of the DC/DC
of the solar irradiance. FIGURE 19 shows the daily profile converter circuit in a PVG system to ensure a fast response
for the capacity of the rechargeable battery measured in Ah and accurate results under suddenly changing weather con-
bounded in [26, 75.5] Ah-in synchronization with the solar ditions, and different operation modes (an electrical air

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N. M. L. Al Maimuri et al.: Electro-Hydrodynamic Design of an IBWG

TABLE 7. List of symbols for Photovoltaic generation system.

FIGURE 20. Daily profile for the capacity of the rechargeable battery
in Ah.

compressor and valves) are successfully analysed. The simu-

lation results demonstrate the robustness and efficiency of the
proposed approach under varying solar radiation conditions.

The main goal of this research is to present a new technique
for an intelligent balloon water gate that takes into consid-
eration the development of tracking solar energy systems.
Electro-hydrodynamic design of an intelligent balloon water -
gate is an encouraging application provided by a solar energy
system especially that installed in rarely locations far away
from the availability of national electricity and capability
study to solve the problem of water scarcity. In this study,
research work on photovoltaic generating system, model-
ing, and optimization technique are analyzed. The electro-
hydrodynamic design has some difficulties related to the
applied modeling system, maximum power point tracking
using a new efficient technique that is called Grey Wolf
Optimization Technique and season variations. These factors
play an active role in creating a compromise solution.
The IBWG automatically operates to regulate the upstream
and downstream water levels of dams, barrages, regulators as
needed. The initial and maintenance costs are low compared
to those of traditional water gates; moreover, an operator
is only required only for cyclic maintenance purposes. It is
found that 14 IBWGs with a volume of 3.5m3 and an air
pressure of 122 psi are needed for the Tyass barrage to operate
as an intelligent barrage, pass the 100 m3 discharge of the
Hilla River and automatically maintain the downstream water
level between 23 m and 24 m above sea level.
This study focused on the design of a low-cost and straight-
forward IBWG powered by a PV solar generation system and

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[29] T. K. Roy, M. A. Mahmud, A. M. T. Oo, M. E. Haque, K. M. Muttaqi, FARHAN LAFTA RASHID was born in Baby-
and N. Mendis, ‘‘Nonlinear adaptive backstepping controller design lon, Iraq, in 1970. He received the Ph.D. degree
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member in many scientific world journals and has
Conf. College Sci. Kerbala, Iraq: Kerbala Unv., 2014.
published more than 70 articles.

NAJAH M. L. AL MAIMURI was born in

Babylon, Iraq, in 1957. He received the Ph.D.
degree in water resources engineering from the
College of Engineering, Baghdad University,
in 2006. He is currently with the Babylon Techni-
cal Institute, Al Furat Al-Awsat Technical Univer-
sity. He is a specialist in water resources research,
environmental studies, groundwater pollution,
mathematical modeling, geotechnical engineer-
ing, and hydrogeology. Recently, his contributions
focused on the development of water movement physics in vadous zone.
He was a member of the IEEE 2017 and has published 69 articles.

A. A. R. AL TAHIR was born in 1977. He received

the degree in electrical engineering from the Elec-
trical Engineering Department, College of Engi-
neering, University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq,
in 2003, and the Ph.D. degree from the Univer-
sity of Caen Basse Normandy (UCBN), France,
in 2016. He is currently pursuing the Ph.D. degree
in power and electrical machines with the Elec-
trical and Electronic Engineering Department,
College of Engineering, University of Kerbala, ARKAN RADI ALI was born in 1970. He received
Karbala, Iraq. He is an Assistant Professor. Recently, he is working on the degree in water resources from the Geology
modeling and design of nonlinear continuous—discrete time sensorless Department, College of Science, University of
sampled—data high gain observers for electrical machines taking into Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq, in 1993, and the Ph.D.
account the time varying gain based on the Lyapunov stability techniques. degree, in 2017. His researches focus on water
In the past, he used an efficient method for reliability evaluation of electrical resources management. Recently, he is focusing on
power systems using the Markov series for continuous time. He is also modeling of vertical water movement in unsatu-
interested in renewable energies, electronic drives, and smart grids. He seeks rated zone.
to develop new concepts in smart grid networks in the future. His research
focuses on modeling and stability analysis for classes of nonlinear systems.

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