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Frequency response characteristics of respiratory flow-meters

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Flow measurement has always been one of the most critical processes in many industrial and clinical applications. The dynamic behavior of flow helps to define the state of a process. An industrial example would be that in an aircraft, where

Flow measurement has always been one of the most critical processes in many industrial and clinical applications. The dynamic behavior of flow helps to define the state of a process. An industrial example would be that in an aircraft, where the rate of airflow passing the aircraft is used to determine the speed of the plane. A clinical example would be that the flow of a patient's breath which could help determine the state of the patient's lungs. This project is focused on the flow-meter that are used for airflow measurement in human lungs. In order to do these measurements, resistive-type flow-meters are commonly used in respiratory measurement systems. This method consists of passing the respiratory flow through a fluid resistive component, while measuring the resulting pressure drop, which is linearly related to volumetric flow rate. These types of flow-meters typically have a low frequency response but are adequate for most applications, including spirometry and respiration monitoring. In the case of lung parameter estimation methods, such as the Quick Obstruction Method, it becomes important to have a higher frequency response in the flow-meter so that the high frequency components in the flow are measurable. The following three types of flow-meters were: a. Capillary type b. Screen Pneumotach type c. Square Edge orifice type To measure the frequency response, a sinusoidal flow is generated with a small speaker and passed through the flow-meter that is connected to a large, rigid container. True flow is proportional to the derivative of the pressure inside the container. True flow is then compared with the measured flow, which is proportional to the pressure drop across the flow-meter. In order to do the characterization, two LabVIEW data acquisition programs have been developed, one for transducer calibration, and another one that records flow and pressure data for frequency response testing of the flow-meter. In addition, a model that explains the behavior exhibited by the flow-meter has been proposed and simulated. This model contains a fluid resistor and inductor in series. The final step in this project was to approximate the frequency response data to the developed model expressed as a transfer function.

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2013

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Photovoltaic modules: effect of tilt angle on soiling

Description

Photovoltaic (PV) systems are one of the next generation's renewable energy sources for our world energy demand. PV modules are highly reliable. However, in polluted environments, over time, they will collect grime and dust. There are also limited field data

Photovoltaic (PV) systems are one of the next generation's renewable energy sources for our world energy demand. PV modules are highly reliable. However, in polluted environments, over time, they will collect grime and dust. There are also limited field data studies about soiling losses on PV modules. The study showed how important it is to investigate the effect of tilt angle on soiling. The study includes two sets of mini-modules. Each set has 9 PV modules tilted at 0, 5, 10, 15, 20, 23, 30, 33 and 40°. The first set called "Cleaned" was cleaned every other day. The second set called "Soiled" was never cleaned after the first day. The short circuit current, a measure of irradiance, and module temperature was monitored and recorded every two minutes over three months (January-March 2011). The data were analyzed to investigate the effect of tilt angle on daily and monthly soiling, and hence transmitted solar insolation and energy production by PV modules. The study shows that during the period of January through March 2011 there was an average loss due to soiling of approximately 2.02% for 0° tilt angle. Modules at tilt anlges 23° and 33° also have some insolation losses but do not come close to the module at 0° tilt angle. Tilt anlge 23° has approximately 1.05% monthly insolation loss, and 33° tilt angle has an insolation loss of approximately 0.96%. The soiling effect is present at any tilt angle, but the magnitude is evident: the flatter the solar module is placed the more energy it will lose.

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2011

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Building applied photovoltaic arrays: side-by-side array comparison with and without fan cooling

Description

Building Applied Photovoltaics (BAPV) form an essential part of today's solar economy. This thesis is an effort to compare and understand the effect of fan cooling on the temperature of rooftop photovoltaic (PV) modules by comparing two side-by-side arrays (test

Building Applied Photovoltaics (BAPV) form an essential part of today's solar economy. This thesis is an effort to compare and understand the effect of fan cooling on the temperature of rooftop photovoltaic (PV) modules by comparing two side-by-side arrays (test array and control array) under identical ambient conditions of irradiance, air temperature, wind speed and wind direction. The lower operating temperature of PV modules due to fan operation mitigates array non uniformity and improves on performance. A crystalline silicon (c-Si) PV module has a light to electrical conversion efficiency of 14-20%. So on a cool sunny day with incident solar irradiance of 1000 W/m2, a PV module with 15% efficiency, will produce about only 150 watts. The rest of the energy is primarily lost in the form of heat. Heat extraction methods for BAPV systems may become increasingly higher in demand as the hot stagnant air underneath the array can be extracted to improve the array efficiency and the extracted low-temperature heat can also be used for residential space heating and water heating. Poly c-Si modules experience a negative temperature coefficient of power at about -0.5% /o C. A typical poly c-Si module would experience power loss due to elevation in temperature, which may be in the range of 25 to 30% for desert conditions such as that of Mesa, Arizona. This thesis investigates the effect of fan cooling on the previously developed thermal models at Arizona State University and on the performance of PV modules/arrays. Ambient conditions are continuously monitored and collected to calculate module temperature using the thermal model and to compare with actually measured temperature of individual modules. Including baseline analysis, the thesis has also looked into the effect of fan on the test array in three stages of 14 continuous days each. Multiple Thermal models are developed in order to identify the effect of fan cooling on performance and temperature uniformity. Although the fan did not prove to have much significant cooling effect on the system, but when combined with wind blocks it helped improve the thermal mismatch both under low and high wind speed conditions.

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2011

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Potential induced degradation (PID) study of fresh and accelerated stress tested photovoltaic modules

Description

Infant mortality rate of field deployed photovoltaic (PV) modules may be expected to be higher than that estimated by standard qualification tests. The reason for increased failure rates may be attributed to the high system voltages. High voltages (HV) in

Infant mortality rate of field deployed photovoltaic (PV) modules may be expected to be higher than that estimated by standard qualification tests. The reason for increased failure rates may be attributed to the high system voltages. High voltages (HV) in grid connected modules induce additional stress factors that cause new degradation mechanisms. These new degradation mechanisms are not recognized by qualification stress tests. To study and model the effect of high system voltages, recently, potential induced degradation (PID) test method has been introduced. Using PID studies, it has been reported that high voltage failure rates are essentially due to increased leakage currents from active semiconducting layer to the grounded module frame, through encapsulant and/or glass. This project involved designing and commissioning of a new PID test bed at Photovoltaic Reliability Laboratory (PRL) of Arizona State University (ASU) to study the mechanisms of HV induced degradation. In this study, PID stress tests have been performed on accelerated stress modules, in addition to fresh modules of crystalline silicon technology. Accelerated stressing includes thermal cycling (TC200 cycles) and damp heat (1000 hours) tests as per IEC 61215. Failure rates in field deployed modules that are exposed to long term weather conditions are better simulated by conducting HV tests on prior accelerated stress tested modules. The PID testing was performed in 3 phases on a set of 5 mono crystalline silicon modules. In Phase-I of PID test, a positive bias of +600 V was applied, between shorted leads and frame of each module, on 3 modules with conducting carbon coating on glass superstrate. The 3 module set was comprised of: 1 fresh control, TC200 and DH1000. The PID test was conducted in an environmental chamber by stressing the modules at 85°C, for 35 hours with an intermittent evaluation for Arrhenius effects. In the Phase-II, a negative bias of -600 V was applied on a set of 3 modules in the chamber as defined above. The 3 module set in phase-II was comprised of: control module from phase-I, TC200 and DH1000. In the Phase-III, the same set of 3 modules which were used in the phase-II again subjected to +600 V bias to observe the recovery of lost power during the Phase-II. Electrical performance, infrared (IR) and electroluminescence (EL) were done prior and post PID testing. It was observed that high voltage positive bias in the first phase resulted in little
o power loss, high voltage negative bias in the second phase caused significant power loss and the high voltage positive bias in the third phase resulted in major recovery of lost power.

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2011

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Development of transition metal macrocyclic-catalysts supported on multi-walled carbon nanotubes for alkaline membrane fuel cell

Description

Low temperature fuel cells are very attractive energy conversion technology for automotive applications due to their qualities of being clean, quiet, efficient and good peak power densities. However, due to high cost and limited durability and reliability, commercialization of this

Low temperature fuel cells are very attractive energy conversion technology for automotive applications due to their qualities of being clean, quiet, efficient and good peak power densities. However, due to high cost and limited durability and reliability, commercialization of this technology has not been possible as yet. The high fuel cell cost is mostly due to the expensive noble catalyst Pt. Alkaline fuel cell (AFC) systems, have potential to make use of non-noble catalysts and thus, provides with a solution of overall lower cost. Therefore, this issue has been addressed in this thesis work. Hydrogen-oxygen fuel cells using an alkaline anion exchange membrane were prepared and evaluated. Various non-platinum catalyst materials were investigated by fabricating membrane-electrode assemblies (MEAs) using Tokuyama membrane (# A201) and compared with commercial noble metal catalysts. Co and Fe phthalocyanine catalyst materials were synthesized using multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) as support materials. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopic study was conducted in order to examine the surface composition. The electroreduction of oxygen has been investigated on Fe phthalocyanine/MWCNT, Co phthalocyanine/MWCNT and commercial Pt/C catalysts. The oxygen reduction reaction kinetics on these catalyst materials were evaluated using rotating disk electrodes in 0.1 M KOH solution and the current density values were consistently higher for Co phthalocyanine based electrodes compared to Fe phthalocyanine. The fuel cell performance of the MEAs with Co and Fe phthalocyanines and Tanaka Kikinzoku Kogyo Pt/C cathode catalysts were 100, 60 and 120 mW cm-2 using H22 and O2 gases. This thesis also includes work on synthesizing nitrogen doped MWCNTs using post-doping and In-Situ methods. Post-doped N-MWNCTs were prepared through heat treatment with NH4OH as nitrogen source. Characterization was done through fuel cell testing, which gave peak power density ~40mW.cm-2. For In-Situ N-MWCT, pyridine was used as nitrogen source. The sample characterization was done using Raman spectroscopy and RBS, which showed the presence ~3 at.% of nitrogen on the carbon surface.

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2012

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Building applied photovoltaic array: thermal modeling and fan cooling

Description

Thermal modeling and investigation into heat extraction methods for building-applied photovoltaic (BAPV) systems have become important for the industry in order to predict energy production and lower the cost per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of generating electricity from these types of systems.

Thermal modeling and investigation into heat extraction methods for building-applied photovoltaic (BAPV) systems have become important for the industry in order to predict energy production and lower the cost per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of generating electricity from these types of systems. High operating temperatures have a direct impact on the performance of BAPV systems and can reduce power output by as much as 10 to 20%. The traditional method of minimizing the operating temperature of BAPV modules has been to include a suitable air gap for ventilation between the rooftop and the modules. There has been research done at Arizona State University (ASU) which investigates the optimum air gap spacing on sufficiently spaced (2-6 inch vertical; 2-inch lateral) modules of four columns. However, the thermal modeling of a large continuous array (with multiple modules of the same type and size and at the same air gap) had yet to be done at ASU prior to this project. In addition to the air gap effect analysis, the industry is exploring different ways of extracting the heat from PV modules including hybrid photovoltaic-thermal systems (PV/T). The goal of this project was to develop a thermal model for a small residential BAPV array consisting of 12 identical polycrystalline silicon modules at an air gap of 2.5 inches from the rooftop. The thermal model coefficients are empirically derived from a simulated field test setup at ASU and are presented in this thesis. Additionally, this project investigates the effects of cooling the array with a 40-Watt exhaust fan. The fan had negligible effect on power output or efficiency for this 2.5-inch air gap array, but provided slightly lower temperatures and better temperature uniformity across the array.

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2010

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Performance degradation of grid-tied photovoltaic modules in a desert climatic condition

Description

Photovoltaic (PV) modules appear to have three classifications of failure: Infant mortality, normal-life failure, and end-of-life failure. Little is known of the end-of-life failures experienced by PV modules due to their inherent longevity. Accelerated Life Testing (ALT) has been at

Photovoltaic (PV) modules appear to have three classifications of failure: Infant mortality, normal-life failure, and end-of-life failure. Little is known of the end-of-life failures experienced by PV modules due to their inherent longevity. Accelerated Life Testing (ALT) has been at the crux of this lifespan prediction; however, without naturally failing modules an accurate acceleration factor cannot be determined for use in ALT. By observing modules that have been aged in the field, a comparison can be made with modules undergoing accelerated testing. In this study an investigation on about 1900 aged (10-17 years) grid-tied PV modules installed in the desert climatic condition of Arizona was undertaken. The investigation was comprised of a check sheet that documented any visual defects and their severity, infrared (IR) scanning, and current-voltage (I-V) curve measurements. After data was collected on modules, an analysis was performed to classify the failure modes and to determine the annual performance degradation rates.

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2010

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Angle of incidence and non-intrusive cell quantum efficiency measurements of commercial photovoltaic modules

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This is a two-part thesis: Part 1 of this thesis tests and validates the methodology and mathematical models of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) 61853-2 standard for the measurement of angle of incidence (AOI) effects on photovoltaic modules. Flat-plate photovoltaic

This is a two-part thesis: Part 1 of this thesis tests and validates the methodology and mathematical models of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) 61853-2 standard for the measurement of angle of incidence (AOI) effects on photovoltaic modules. Flat-plate photovoltaic modules in the field operate under a wide range of environmental conditions. The purpose of IEC 61853-2 is to characterize photovoltaic modules' performance under specific environmental conditions. Part 1 of this report focuses specifically on AOI. To accurately test and validate IEC 61853-2 standard for measuring AOI, meticulous experimental setup and test procedures were followed. Modules of five different photovoltaic technology types with glass superstrates were tested. Test results show practically identical relative light transmission plots for all five test modules. The experimental results were compared to theoretical and empirical models for relative light transmission of air-glass interface. IEC 61853-2 states "for the flat glass superstrate modules, the AOI test does not need to be performed; rather, the data of a flat glass air interface can be used." The results obtained in this thesis validate this statement. This work was performed in collaboration with another Master of Science student (Surynarayana Janakeeraman) and the test results are presented in two masters theses. Part 2 of this thesis is to develop non-intrusive techniques to accurately measure the quantum efficiency (QE) of a single-junction crystalline silicon cell within a commercial module. This thesis will describe in detail all the equipment and conditions necessary to measure QE and discuss the factors which may influence this measurement. The ability to utilize a non-intrusive test to measure quantum efficiency of a cell within a module is extremely beneficial for reliability testing of commercial modules. Detailed methodologies for this innovative test procedure are not widely available in industry because equipment and measurement techniques have not been explored extensively. This paper will provide a literature review describing relevant theories and measurement techniques related to measuring the QE of a cell within a module. The testing methodology and necessary equipment will be described in detail. Results and conclusions provide the overall accuracy of the measurements and discuss the parameters affecting these measurements.

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2013

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Dispatch strategy development for grid-tied household energy systems

Description

The prevalence of renewable generation will increase in the next several decades and offset conventional generation more and more. Yet this increase is not coming without challenges. Solar, wind, and even some water resources are intermittent and unpredictable, and thereby

The prevalence of renewable generation will increase in the next several decades and offset conventional generation more and more. Yet this increase is not coming without challenges. Solar, wind, and even some water resources are intermittent and unpredictable, and thereby create scheduling challenges due to their inherent “uncontrolled” nature. To effectively manage these distributed renewable assets, new control algorithms must be developed for applications including energy management, bridge power, and system stability. This can be completed through a centralized control center though efforts are being made to parallel the control architecture with the organization of the renewable assets themselves—namely, distributed controls. Building energy management systems are being employed to control localized energy generation, storage, and use to reduce disruption on the net utility load. One such example is VOLTTRONTM, an agent-based platform for building energy control in real time. In this thesis, algorithms developed in VOLTTRON simulate a home energy management system that consists of a solar PV array, a lithium-ion battery bank, and the grid. Dispatch strategies are implemented to reduce energy charges from overall consumption ($/kWh) and demand charges ($/kW). Dispatch strategies for implementing storage devices are tuned on a month-to-month basis to provide a meaningful economic advantage under simulated scenarios to explore algorithm sensitivity to changing external factors. VOLTTRON agents provide automated real-time optimization of dispatch strategies to efficiently manage energy supply and demand, lower consumer costs associated with energy usage, and reduce load on the utility grid.

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2015

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Hybrid microgrid model based on solar photovoltaics with batteries and fuel cells system for intermittent applications

Description

Microgrids are a subset of the modern power structure; using distributed generation (DG) to supply power to communities rather than vast regions. The reduced scale mitigates loss allowing the power produced to do more with better control, giving greater security,

Microgrids are a subset of the modern power structure; using distributed generation (DG) to supply power to communities rather than vast regions. The reduced scale mitigates loss allowing the power produced to do more with better control, giving greater security, reliability, and design flexibility. This paper explores the performance and cost viability of a hybrid grid-tied microgrid that utilizes Photovoltaic (PV), batteries, and fuel cell (FC) technology. The concept proposes that each community home is equipped with more PV than is required for normal operation. As the homes are part of a microgrid, excess or unused energy from one home is collected for use elsewhere within the microgrid footprint. The surplus power that would have been discarded becomes a community asset, and is used to run intermittent services. In this paper, the modeled community does not have parking adjacent to each home allowing for the installment of a privately owned slower Level 2 charger, making EV ownership option untenable. A solution is to provide a Level 3 DC Quick Charger (DCQC) as the intermittent service. The addition of batteries and Fuel Cells are meant to increase load leveling, reliability, and instill limited island capability.

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2013