Matching Items (18)

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Constructing a model for small scale fish farmers

Description

Fish farming is a fast growing industry, which, although necessary to feed an ever growing worldwide population, has its share of negative environmental consequences, including the release of drugs and other waste into the ocean, the use of fish caught

Fish farming is a fast growing industry, which, although necessary to feed an ever growing worldwide population, has its share of negative environmental consequences, including the release of drugs and other waste into the ocean, the use of fish caught from the ocean to feed farm raised fish, and the escape of farm raised fish into natural bodies of water. However, the raising of certain types of fish, such as tilapia, seems to be an environmentally better proposition than raising other types of fish, such as salmon. This paper will explore the problems associated with fish farming, as well as offer a model, based on the literature, and interviews with fish farmers, to make small-scale fish farming both more environmentally, and more economically, sustainable. This paper culminates with a model for small-scale, specifically semi-subsistence, fish farmers. This model emphasizes education of the fish farmers, as well as educators learning from the fish farmers they interact with. The goal of this model is to help these fish farmers become both more environmentally and economically sustainable.

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Date Created
2011

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Frequency response characteristics of respiratory flow-meters

Description

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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Date Created
2013

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Angle of incidence and power degradation analysis of photovoltaic modules

Description

Photovoltaic (PV) module nameplates typically provide the module's electrical characteristics at standard test conditions (STC). The STC conditions are: irradiance of 1000 W/m2, cell temperature of 25oC and sunlight spectrum at air mass 1.5. However, modules in the field experience

Photovoltaic (PV) module nameplates typically provide the module's electrical characteristics at standard test conditions (STC). The STC conditions are: irradiance of 1000 W/m2, cell temperature of 25oC and sunlight spectrum at air mass 1.5. However, modules in the field experience a wide range of environmental conditions which affect their electrical characteristics and render the nameplate data insufficient in determining a module's overall, actual field performance. To make sound technical and financial decisions, designers and investors need additional performance data to determine the energy produced by modules operating under various field conditions. The angle of incidence (AOI) of sunlight on PV modules is one of the major parameters which dictate the amount of light reaching the solar cells. The experiment was carried out at the Arizona State University- Photovoltaic Reliability Laboratory (ASU-PRL). The data obtained was processed in accordance with the IEC 61853-2 model to obtain relative optical response of the modules (response which does not include the cosine effect). The results were then compared with theoretical models for air-glass interface and also with the empirical model developed by Sandia National Laboratories. The results showed that all modules with glass as the superstrate had identical optical response and were in agreement with both the IEC 61853-2 model and other theoretical and empirical models. The performance degradation of module over years of exposure in the field is dependent upon factors such as environmental conditions, system configuration, etc. Analyzing the degradation of power and other related performance parameters over time will provide vital information regarding possible degradation rates and mechanisms of the modules. An extensive study was conducted by previous ASU-PRL students on approximately 1700 modules which have over 13 years of hot- dry climatic field condition. An analysis of the results obtained in previous ASU-PRL studies show that the major degradation in crystalline silicon modules having glass/polymer construction is encapsulant discoloration (causing short circuit current drop) and solder bond degradation (causing fill factor drop due to series resistance increase). The power degradation for crystalline silicon modules having glass/glass construction was primarily attributed to encapsulant delamination (causing open-circuit voltage drop).

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2013

Algae computer simulation: growth forecasting within a swimming pool environment

Description

An issue with the utilization of swimming pools is that pumps are operated an excessive number of hours to keep the pool free of debris and algae. Case in point, according to the pool industry, a pump should operate one

An issue with the utilization of swimming pools is that pumps are operated an excessive number of hours to keep the pool free of debris and algae. Case in point, according to the pool industry, a pump should operate one hour for every ten degrees of ambient temperature. A dynamic model and a control strategy have been developed using Matlab/Simulink that uses environmental conditions together with chemicals that hinder or aid algae growth in order to determine algae population. This model suggests ways to function the pump on shorter time intervals to reduce energy consumption, while simultaneously maintaining algae populations at acceptable levels. Other factors included in the model are pool thermal dynamics and pool pump/filter performance characteristics, since they also have an effect algae growth. This thesis presents the first step for an alternative way of operating a swimming pool by minimizing operating costs while eliminating algae.

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Date Created
2012

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Design and analysis of stop-rotor multimode unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)

Description

The objective of this work is to develop a Stop-Rotor Multimode UAV. This UAV is capable of vertical take-off and landing like a helicopter and can convert from a helicopter mode to an airplane mode in mid-flight. Thus, this UAV

The objective of this work is to develop a Stop-Rotor Multimode UAV. This UAV is capable of vertical take-off and landing like a helicopter and can convert from a helicopter mode to an airplane mode in mid-flight. Thus, this UAV can hover as a helicopter and achieve high mission range of an airplane. The stop-rotor concept implies that in mid-flight the lift generating helicopter rotor stops and rotates the blades into airplane wings. The thrust in airplane mode is then provided by a pusher propeller. The aircraft configuration presents unique challenges in flight dynamics, modeling and control. In this thesis a mathematical model along with the design and simulations of a hover control will be presented. In addition, the discussion of the performance in fixed-wing flight, and the autopilot architecture of the UAV will be presented. Also presented, are some experimental "conversion" results where the Stop-Rotor aircraft was dropped from a hot air balloon and performed a successful conversion from helicopter to airplane mode.

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Date Created
2011

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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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Repurposing technology: an innovative low cost two-dimensional noncontact measurement tool

Description

Two-dimensional vision-based measurement is an ideal choice for measuring small or fragile parts that could be damaged using conventional contact measurement methods. Two-dimensional vision-based measurement systems can be quite expensive putting the technology out of reach of inventors and others.

Two-dimensional vision-based measurement is an ideal choice for measuring small or fragile parts that could be damaged using conventional contact measurement methods. Two-dimensional vision-based measurement systems can be quite expensive putting the technology out of reach of inventors and others. The vision-based measurement tool design developed in this thesis is a low cost alternative that can be made for less than $500US from off-the-shelf parts and free software. The design is based on the USB microscope. The USB microscope was once considered a toy, similar to the telescopes and microscopes of the 17th century, but has recently started finding applications in industry, laboratories, and schools. In order to convert the USB microscope into a measurement tool, research in the following areas was necessary: currently available vision-based measurement systems, machine vision technologies, microscope design, photographic methods, digital imaging, illumination, edge detection, and computer aided drafting applications. The result of the research was a two-dimensional vision-based measurement system that is extremely versatile, easy to use, and, best of all, inexpensive.

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Date Created
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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Date Created
2012