Design, Evaluation and Techno-Economic Analysis of a Hybrid Solar-Wind Power Generation System in UAE

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The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
With the recent turn of events globally, there has been an increasing awareness to drive the earth through sustainable energy means with renewable resources. The use of conventional fossil fuel used for centuries not only has adverse effects but are also fast depleting giving birth to other natural and cleaner alternative power production means for high energy consumption building industry sector. The “Sun and Wind” have by far been proven as the most natural, free and abundant resources on the earth. Also they have received tremendous attention in the recent time as large fractions of these recourses are available at peak power/electrical load production. One of the most important aspects of using Sun (Solar PV) and the Wind turbines (WT) energy resources as an integrated system is that they share most of its components, backup systems and infrastructure to produce power as advantageous technically and economically in this research process. The dissertation aims at exploring the benefits and future potential of using this integrated (solar PV and wind WT) system in relation to the power loads required of the household units in the UAE, Dubai from varied and opposite weather and time conditions i.e. sunny and windy conditions. The research is thus split into two modes of study which are technical and economical. The computer based simulation methodology proved to be instrumental in the design and modeling of the household to analyze the potential of photovoltaic’s (PV’s) and wind turbines (WT’s) with their common balance of system components. A step by step progression of the various identified case configuration with the use of PV’s first, WT’s second and finally their hybridization HYPW’s from 25%, 50%, 75%, 100% grid connected and standalone renewable energy resources, laid the foundation of the results evolved as technically and economically optimized via the simulation methodology. The technical results evaluated that till 25% all case configuration, the individual PV’s and WT’s were more suitable to the household due to the low expected power demand from the renewable resources. But beyond the 25% all case configuration, the HYPW system of renewable energy proved as a better solution in comparison to the individuals of PV’s and WT’s due to its higher electrical load demand and potential. The optimized results were a good combination of hybridization of HYPW with their respective contribution of solar and wind energy efficiencies by the PV’s contributing higher and the WT’s maintaining a constant supportive contribution by the electrical production of 1,638kWh/yr respectively for all the 50%, 75%, 100% grid connected and standalone renewable energy resources case configurations. There was reduction in the requirement of PV panels in the case of HYPW configuration from 2kW to 1.4kW PV panels (50% case), 5.4kW reduced to 4kW PV’s (75% case), 7kW reduced to 5.2kW PV’s (100% and Standalone case) hybridized with 1kW 1 number WT’s along with a subsequent support from a correctly evaluated size of the batteries and inverters capacities. The economics was based on the net present cost (NPC) over the projects 15 years lifetime, in relation to the technical optimization. Similar to the technical result except till all 50% case, the HYPW system was more cost effective as compared to the other two PV’s and WT’s individual system. The minimal 25% and 50% renewable energy grid connected all case configurations proved more economical with only PV’s system. This was essentially due to the lesser operating cost with minimal use of number of components involved in electrical production for household. However the HYPW system was economical for 75%, 100% grid connected and standalone case configurations. This was due to reduction in the number of PV panels in the HYPW system leading to lesser initial capital cost, with the balance electrical production taken care by the 1 number 1kW WT being comparatively cheaper than number of PV’s required otherwise. The reduced number of components led to lowering of the operating cost of the replacements and O&M costs in the HYPW system. Finally the HYPW integrated system proved to be technically better and economically cost effective than the installation of PV’s or WT’s as individual, with increasing demand of electrical production for the household from renewable energy resources with less dependence on the fossil fuel based local grid connection.
hybrid solar-wind power, United Arab Emirates (UAE), renewable resources, energy consumption, wind turbines, photovoltaics, energy efficiency, sustainable energy