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Burkina Faso Hospital Microgrid Case Study

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This paper analyzes Burkina Faso’s Souro Sanou University Hospital Center’s energy needs and discusses whether or not solar panels are a good investment. This paper also discusses a way to limit the damage caused by power outages. The hospital has

This paper analyzes Burkina Faso’s Souro Sanou University Hospital Center’s energy needs and discusses whether or not solar panels are a good investment. This paper also discusses a way to limit the damage caused by power outages. The hospital has a history of problems with power outages; in the summer they have power outages every other day lasting between one to four hours, and in the rainy season they have outages once every other week lasting the same amount of time.
The first step in this analysis was collecting relevant data which includes: location, electricity rates, energy consumption, and existing assets. The data was entered into a program called HOMER. HOMER is a program which analyzes an electrical system and determines the best configuration and usage of assets to get the lowest levelized cost of energy (LCOE). In HOMER, five different analyses were performed. They reviewed the hospital’s energy usage over 25 years: the current situation, one of the current situation with added solar panels, and another where the solar panels have single axis tracking. The other two analyses created incentives to have more solar panels, one situation with net metering, and one with a sellback rate of 0.03 $/kWh. The result of the analysis concluded that the ideal situation would have solar panels with a capacity of 300 kW, and the LCOE in this situation will be 0.153 $/kWh. The analysis shows that investing in solar panels will save the hospital approximately $65,500 per year, but the initial investment of $910,000 only allows for a total savings of $61,253 over the life of the project. The analysis also shows that if the electricity company, Sonabel, eventually buys back electricity then net metering would be more profitable than reselling electricity for the hospital.
Solar panels will help the hospital save money over time, but they will not stop power outages from happening at the hospital. For the outages to stop affecting the hospital’s operations they will have to invest in an uninterrupted power supply (UPS). The UPS will power the hospital for the time between when the power goes out and when their generators are turning on which makes it an essential investment. This will stop outages from affecting the hospital, and if the power goes out during the day then the solar panels can help supplement the energy production which will take some of the strain from their generators.
The results of this study will be sent to officials at the hospital and they can decide if the large initial investment justifies the savings. If the solar panels and UPS can save one life, then maybe the large initial investment is worth it.

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2019-05

Algal Fuels: A Future Less Green than the Plant

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The algal fuel industry has existed since the 1980s without fully commercializing a product. Algal fuels are potentially viable replacements for fossil fuels due to their fast cultivation, high oil content, carbon dioxide sequestration during growth, and ability to

The algal fuel industry has existed since the 1980s without fully commercializing a product. Algal fuels are potentially viable replacements for fossil fuels due to their fast cultivation, high oil content, carbon dioxide sequestration during growth, and ability to be grown on non-arable land. For this thesis, six companies from 61 investigated were interviewed about their history with biofuels, technological changes they have gone through, and views for the future of the industry. All companies interviewed have moved away from fuel production largely due to high production costs and have moved primarily toward pharmaceuticals and animal feed production as well as wastewater treatment. While most do not plan to return to the biofuel industry in the near future, a return would likely require additional legislation, increased technological innovation, and coproduction of multiple products.

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2019-05

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Social-Life Cycle Assessment: Oil Extraction in Section 1002 of the National Arctic Wildlife Refuge

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Drilling in Section 1002 has been an ongoing debate since the region was designated as a potential area for drilling projects, pending congressional approval in 1980. In 2017, the area was officially opened up for oil and gas development through

Drilling in Section 1002 has been an ongoing debate since the region was designated as a potential area for drilling projects, pending congressional approval in 1980. In 2017, the area was officially opened up for oil and gas development through its passage in the GOP Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. This act requires 2 lease sales of 400,000 acres, with an allowed 2,000 acre physical footprint (not including pipelines, ice roads, or gravel mines). Using Social-Life Cycle Assessment methodology to assess the process of oil extraction in Section 1002, significant benefits and drawbacks of drilling in this region, with economic, cultural, and social impacts ranging from the local level to the state level to the national level were identified.

Stakeholders impacted by oil development in the Section 1002 region include the Kaktovik community who lives within the Program Area, the Gwich’in people who live south of ANWR, the corporations who will be leasing the land, as well as the employees who will be working on the projects. These stakeholders share similar values and interests, however, when it comes down to the attainment of these values, there are significant differences in opinion. This debate comes down specifically to the desire to ensure stability for one’s family and community, as this means 2 different things to the majority stakeholders on this issue: The Inupiaq and the Gwich’in. The Inupiaq ,who live in Kaktovik specifically ,are particularly keen on the idea of drilling in the Section 1002 region, because the revenues and opportunities that come with the oil and gas development provide access to better standards of living and a more westernized way of life. The Gwich’in, however, value their relationship to the land and the caribou that are at risk of significant change. These 2 groups are critical to the debate, but the state and federal governments have the final say, and a financial incentive to move forward with the lease sales.

Utilizing the S-LCA framework, life cycle impacts of drilling on society are found using indicators that are identified and assessed using both qualitative and quantitative means. Although some conclusions are uncertain due to the forward-looking nature of this S-LCA, the Increasing/Decreasing trends can be identified and confidently attributed to the specific indicators.

Significant Results:
Significant issues this study has highlighted include the resulting impacts, both positive and negative, on the communities affected by oil and gas development in Section 1002. Significant stakeholders include the Kaktovik community, the Gwich’in people, the oil and gas workers in the state of Alaska, and the oil and gas companies themselves. The local residents are the most affected by the impacts of development, with significant issues pertaining to potential for significant lifestyle change, the increased risk of impact on subsistence species, the risks associated with pollution, and the effect on the economy through revenues and job availability.

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2019-05

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Assessing the Economic Impact on Counties in the United States to a Loss of Fossil Fuel Dependence for Energy Production

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This project seeks to provide a general picture of the economic dependence on fossil fuels per County in the United States. The purpose for this study is creating a foundation for conversations about the future of fossil fuel workers and

This project seeks to provide a general picture of the economic dependence on fossil fuels per County in the United States. The purpose for this study is creating a foundation for conversations about the future of fossil fuel workers and counties that depend heavily on fossil fuels. The main indicators utilized for this were employment and payroll data extracted from United States Census Bureau’s County Business Patterns dataset. A section on similarities between fossil fuel workers and other occupations was included, which shows possible alternative industries for fossil fuel workers. The main goal of the project is to provide possible solutions for mitigating job losses in the future. Some proposed solutions include retraining, expanding higher education, and investing in new industries. It is most important for future work to include input from most vulnerable counties and understand the social and cultural complexities that are tied to this problem.

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2020-05

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Hydrothermal Liquefaction of Micro-Algae to Produce Liquid Biofuels

Description

Fossil fuels are currently the main source of energy in the world’s transportation sector. They are also the primary contributor to carbon emissions in the atmosphere, leading to adverse climate effects. The objective of the following research is to increase

Fossil fuels are currently the main source of energy in the world’s transportation sector. They are also the primary contributor to carbon emissions in the atmosphere, leading to adverse climate effects. The objective of the following research is to increase the yield and efficiency of algal biofuel in order to establish algal-derived fuel as a competitive alternative to predominantly used fossil fuels. Using biofuel commercially will reduce the cost of production and ultimately decrease additional carbon emissions. Experiments were performed using hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) to determine which catalyst would enhance the algal biocrude oil and result in the highest quality biofuel product, as well as to find the optimal combination of processing temperature and manure co-liquefaction of biomass ratio. For the catalytic upgrading experiments, Micractenium Immerum algae was used in conjunction with pure H2, Pt/C, MO2C, and HZSM-5 catalysts at 350℃ and 400℃, 430 psi, and a 30-minute residence time to investigate the effects of catalyst choice and temperature on the crude oil yield. While all catalysts increased the carbon content of the crude oil, it was found that using HZSM-5 at 350℃ resulted in the greatest overall yield of about 75%. However, the Pt/C catalyst increased the HHV from 34.26 MJ/kg to 43.26 MJ/kg. Cyanidioschyzon merolae (CM) algae and swine manure were utilized in the co-liquefaction experiments, in ratios (algae to swine) of 80:20, 50:50, and 20:80 at temperatures of 300℃ and 330℃. It was found that a ratio of 80:20 at 330℃ produced the highest biocrude oil yield of 29.3%. Although the 80:20 experiments had the greatest biomass conversion and best supported the deacidification of the oil product, the biocrude oil had a HHV of 33.58 MJ/kg, the lowest between the three different ratios. However, all calorific values were relatively close to each other, suggesting that both catalytic upgrading and co-liquefaction can increase the efficiency and economic viability of algal biofuel.

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2020-05

The Development of a Better Electrical Bicycle for Commuting Americans

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Each year, the average vehicle contributes 4.6 metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere [1]. These gases contribute to around 30,000 premature deaths each year [2] and are linked to in the increase in cases of Asthma. Human health

Each year, the average vehicle contributes 4.6 metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere [1]. These gases contribute to around 30,000 premature deaths each year [2] and are linked to in the increase in cases of Asthma. Human health is further impacted by the increase of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere. Rays from the sun travel to the Earth where they are absorbed. Absorbing the sun’s rays heats up the Earth which is then radiated into space. Greenhouse gasses inhibit this process much like the glass walls in a greenhouse. As a result, the temperature of the Earth steadily increases. The greenhouse effect is dangerous because it can be linked to natural disasters, rising ocean levels, and extinction of species. One of the biggest contributors to the greenhouse effect is burning fossil fuels. Powerplants, agriculture, and transportation are some of the largest contributors to the increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide. To mitigate the effects of transportation, car companies have invested into production of alternative and renewable fuels for their products. One of the sources which has gained popularity recently, is the use of electricity to power our vehicles. Tesla has spearheaded the electric car movement and is largely responsible for this beneficial shift. One issue with this approach is that a majority, around 76.3%, of Americans drive alone on their commute [13]. The market in its current state encourages inefficient transportation due to the lack of alternatives. While motorcycles may offer a more eco-friendly and economical approach to cars, many are afraid of potential hazards of using this mode of transportation. The introduction of electric bikes offers an interesting approach to improving this efficiency and safety issue. The wide availability to customers offers an alternative which pushes the traditional distance limits for commuting on a bicycle. Since the market is relatively new, several issues pose challenges to consumers. This research aims to clarify and analyze the electric bike market in order to supply a potential customer with the tools needed to acquire a high quality and reasonably price bike.

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2020-05

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Performance Modeling of a Concentrating Photovoltaic Two-Axis Tracker

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The purpose of this research is to study the effect of angle of acceptance and mechanical control system noise on the power available to a two-axis solar concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) system. The efficiency of a solar CPV system is greatly

The purpose of this research is to study the effect of angle of acceptance and mechanical control system noise on the power available to a two-axis solar concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) system. The efficiency of a solar CPV system is greatly dependent on the accuracy of the tracking system because a strong focal point is needed to concentrate incident solar irradiation on the small, high efficiency cells. The objective of this study was to evaluate and quantify tracking accuracy for a performance model which would apply to similar two-axis systems. An analysis comparing CPV to traditional solar photovoltaics from an economic standpoint was conducted as well to evaluate the viability of emerging CPV technology. The research was performed using two calibrated solar radiation sensors mounted on the plane of the tracking system, normal to the sun. One sensor is held at a constant, normal angle (0 degrees) and the other is varied by a known interior angle in the range of 0 degrees to 10 degrees. This was to study the magnitude of the decrease in in irradiance as the angle deviation increases. The results show that, as the interior angle increases, the solar irradiance and thus available power available on the focal point will decrease roughly at a parabolic rate, with a sharp cutoff point at angles greater than 5 degrees. These findings have a significant impact on CPV system tracking mechanisms, which require high precision tracking in order to perform as intended.

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2017-05

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Have Government Subsidies Improved Corportate Performance in New Energy Industry? An Analysis Based On Empirical Analysis and Case Study of GCL-Poly

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This paper investigates the effect of government subsidies on the performance of new energy companies. An empirical analysis using data from Chinese A-share listed new energy firms and companies of other industries under standard classification of industries by China Securities

This paper investigates the effect of government subsidies on the performance of new energy companies. An empirical analysis using data from Chinese A-share listed new energy firms and companies of other industries under standard classification of industries by China Securities and Regulatory Commission and a case study of GCL-Poly are combined. The result shows that government subsidies have negative effects on new energy companies' performance and their R&D intensity.

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2017-12

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Building Management System Integration: Energy Data Analytics

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This paper describes the research done to quantify the relationship between external air temperature and energy consumption and internal air temperature and energy consumption. The study was conducted on a LEED Gold certified building, College Avenue Commons, located on Arizona

This paper describes the research done to quantify the relationship between external air temperature and energy consumption and internal air temperature and energy consumption. The study was conducted on a LEED Gold certified building, College Avenue Commons, located on Arizona State University's Tempe campus. It includes information on the background of previous studies in the area, some that agree with the research hypotheses and some that take a different path. Real-time data was collected hourly for energy consumption and external air temperature. Intermittent internal air temperature was collected by undergraduate researcher, Charles Banke. Regression analysis was used to prove two research hypotheses. The authors found no correlation between external air temperature and energy consumption, nor did they find a relationship between internal air temperature and energy consumption. This paper also includes recommendations for future work to improve the study.

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2018-05

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Optimal Dimensions for Beam Power Harvester for Maximum Power Output

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In the last several years, there has been a significant growth in research in the field of power harvesting, the process of capturing the energy surrounding a system and converting it into usable electrical energy. This concept has received particular

In the last several years, there has been a significant growth in research in the field of power harvesting, the process of capturing the energy surrounding a system and converting it into usable electrical energy. This concept has received particular interest in recent years with the ever-increasing production of portable and wireless electronic devices. Many of these devices that are currently in production utilize electrochemical batteries as a power source, which while effective, maintain the drawback of having a finite energy supply, thus requiring periodic replacement. The concept of power harvesting, however, works to solve these issues through electronics that are designed to capture ambient energy surrounding them convert it into usable electronic energy. The use of power harvesting in energy scavenging devices allows for the possible development of devices that are self-powered and do not require their power sources to be replaced. Several models have been developed by Soldano et al [3] and Liao et al [2] that have been proven accurate at predicting the power output of a piezoelectric power harvester in a cantileaver beam configuration. The work in this paper will expand further on the model developed by Liao et al [2], and as its main goal will use a modified form of that model to predict the optimal dimensions for a beam power harvester to achieve the maximum power output possible. The model will be updated b replacing the mode shape function used to approximate the deflection of the beam with the true defletion, which is based on the complex wavenumber that incorporates the complex Young's modulus of the material used. Other changes to account for this replacement will also be presented, along with numerical results of the final model.

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2012-05