Matching Items (53)

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Biodiesel: Sustainable Production and Commercialization for Community Support

Description

This research focused on how low-income communities in Ghana could convert Waste Vegetable Oil (WVO) into biodiesel to supplement their energy demands. The 2016 World Energy Outlook estimates that about

This research focused on how low-income communities in Ghana could convert Waste Vegetable Oil (WVO) into biodiesel to supplement their energy demands. The 2016 World Energy Outlook estimates that about 8 million Ghanaians do not have access to electricity while 82% of the population use biomass as cooking fuel. However, WVO is available in almost every home and is also largely produced by hotels and schools. There are over 2,700 registered hotels and more than 28,000 educational institutions from Basic to the Tertiary level. Currently, most WVOs are often discarded in open gutters or left to go rancid and later disposed of. Therefore, WVOs serve as cheap materials available in large quantities with a high potential for conversion into biodiesel and commercializing to support the economic needs of low-income communities. In 2013, a group of researchers at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Ghana estimated that the country could be producing between 82,361 and 85,904 tons of biodiesel from WVOs generated by hotels alone in 2015. Further analysis was also carried out to examine the Ghana National Biofuel Policy that was introduced in 2005 with support from the Ghana Energy Commission. Based on the information identified in the research, a set of recommendations were made to help the central government in promoting the biodiesel industry in Ghana, with a focus on low-income or farming communities. Lastly, a self-sustaining biodiesel production model with high potential for commercialization, was proposed to enable low-income communities to produce their own biodiesel from WVOs to meet their energy demands.

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Date Created
  • 2017-05

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26+ year old photovoltaic power plant: degradation and reliability evaluation of crystalline silicon modules - north array

Description

The object of this study was a 26 year old residential Photovoltaic (PV) monocrystalline silicon (c-Si) power plant, called Solar One, built by developer John F. Long in Phoenix, Arizona

The object of this study was a 26 year old residential Photovoltaic (PV) monocrystalline silicon (c-Si) power plant, called Solar One, built by developer John F. Long in Phoenix, Arizona (a hot-dry field condition). The task for Arizona State University Photovoltaic Reliability Laboratory (ASU-PRL) graduate students was to evaluate the power plant through visual inspection, electrical performance, and infrared thermography. The purpose of this evaluation was to measure and understand the extent of degradation to the system along with the identification of the failure modes in this hot-dry climatic condition. This 4000 module bipolar system was originally installed with a 200 kW DC output of PV array (17 degree fixed tilt) and an AC output of 175 kVA. The system was shown to degrade approximately at a rate of 2.3% per year with no apparent potential induced degradation (PID) effect. The power plant is made of two arrays, the north array and the south array. Due to a limited time frame to execute this large project, this work was performed by two masters students (Jonathan Belmont and Kolapo Olakonu) and the test results are presented in two masters theses. This thesis presents the results obtained on the north array and the other thesis presents the results obtained on the south array. The resulting study showed that PV module design, array configuration, vandalism, installation methods and Arizona environmental conditions have had an effect on this system's longevity and reliability. Ultimately, encapsulation browning, higher series resistance (potentially due to solder bond fatigue) and non-cell interconnect ribbon breakages outside the modules were determined to be the primary causes for the power loss.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Feasibility of a negative pressure system to remove smoke from an aircraft flight deck

Description

Smoke entering a flight deck cabin has been an issue for commercial aircraft for many years. The issue for a flight crew is how to mitigate the smoke so that

Smoke entering a flight deck cabin has been an issue for commercial aircraft for many years. The issue for a flight crew is how to mitigate the smoke so that they can safely fly the aircraft. For this thesis, the feasibility of having a Negative Pressure System that utilizes the cabin altitude pressure and outside altitude pressure to remove smoke from a flight deck was studied. Existing procedures for flight crews call for a descent down to a safe level for depressurizing the aircraft before taking further action. This process takes crucial time that is critical to the flight crew's ability to keep aware of the situation. This process involves a flight crews coordination and fast thinking to manually take control of the aircraft; which has become increasing more difficult due to the advancements in aircraft automation. Unfortunately this is the only accepted procedure that is used by a flight crew. Other products merely displace the smoke. This displacement is after the time it takes for the flight crew to set up the smoke displacement unit with no guarantee that a flight crew will be able to see or use all of the aircraft's controls. The Negative Pressure System will work automatically and not only use similar components already found on the aircraft, but work in conjunction with the smoke detection system and pressurization system so smoke removal can begin without having to descend down to a lower altitude. In order for this system to work correctly many factors must be taken into consideration. The size of a flight deck varies from aircraft to aircraft, therefore the ability for the system to efficiently remove smoke from an aircraft is taken into consideration. For the system to be feasible on an aircraft the cost and weight must be taken into consideration as the added fuel consumption due to weight of the system may be the limiting factor for installing such a system on commercial aircraft.

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Date Created
  • 2013

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Investigation of 1,900 individual field aged photovoltaic modules for potential induced degradation (PID) in a positive biased power plant

Description

Photovoltaic (PV) modules undergo performance degradation depending on climatic conditions, applications, and system configurations. The performance degradation prediction of PV modules is primarily based on Accelerated Life Testing (ALT) procedures.

Photovoltaic (PV) modules undergo performance degradation depending on climatic conditions, applications, and system configurations. The performance degradation prediction of PV modules is primarily based on Accelerated Life Testing (ALT) procedures. In order to further strengthen the ALT process, additional investigation of the power degradation of field aged PV modules in various configurations is required. A detailed investigation of 1,900 field aged (12-18 years) PV modules deployed in a power plant application was conducted for this study. Analysis was based on the current-voltage (I-V) measurement of all the 1,900 modules individually. I-V curve data of individual modules formed the basis for calculating the performance degradation of the modules. The percentage performance degradation and rates of degradation were compared to an earlier study done at the same plant. The current research was primarily focused on identifying the extent of potential induced degradation (PID) of individual modules with reference to the negative ground potential. To investigate this, the arrangement and connection of the individual modules/strings was examined in detail. The study also examined the extent of underperformance of every series string due to performance mismatch of individual modules in that string. The power loss due to individual module degradation and module mismatch at string level was then compared to the rated value.

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Date Created
  • 2011

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26+ year old photovoltaic power plant: degradation and reliability evaluation of crystalline silicon modules - south array

Description

ABSTRACT As the use of photovoltaic (PV) modules in large power plants continues to increase globally, more studies on degradation, reliability, failure modes, and mechanisms of field aged modules are

ABSTRACT As the use of photovoltaic (PV) modules in large power plants continues to increase globally, more studies on degradation, reliability, failure modes, and mechanisms of field aged modules are needed to predict module life expectancy based on accelerated lifetime testing of PV modules. In this work, a 26+ year old PV power plant in Phoenix, Arizona has been evaluated for performance, reliability, and durability. The PV power plant, called Solar One, is owned and operated by John F. Long's homeowners association. It is a 200 kWdc, standard test conditions (STC) rated power plant comprised of 4000 PV modules or frameless laminates, in 100 panel groups (rated at 175 kWac). The power plant is made of two center-tapped bipolar arrays, the north array and the south array. Due to a limited time frame to execute this large project, this work was performed by two masters students (Jonathan Belmont and Kolapo Olakonu) and the test results are presented in two masters theses. This thesis presents the results obtained on the south array and the other thesis presents the results obtained on the north array. Each of these two arrays is made of four sub arrays, the east sub arrays (positive and negative polarities) and the west sub arrays (positive and negative polarities), making up eight sub arrays. The evaluation and analyses of the power plant included in this thesis consists of: visual inspection, electrical performance measurements, and infrared thermography. A possible presence of potential induced degradation (PID) due to potential difference between ground and strings was also investigated. Some installation practices were also studied and found to contribute to the power loss observed in this investigation. The power output measured in 2011 for all eight sub arrays at STC is approximately 76 kWdc and represents a power loss of 62% (from 200 kW to 76 kW) over 26+ years. The 2011 measured power output for the four south sub arrays at STC is 39 kWdc and represents a power loss of 61% (from 100 kW to 39 kW) over 26+ years. Encapsulation browning and non-cell interconnect ribbon breakages were determined to be the primary causes for the power loss.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Feasibility of energy harvesting using a piezoelectric tire

Description

While the piezoelectric effect has been around for some time, it has only recently caught interest as a potential sustainable energy harvesting device. Piezoelectric energy harvesting has been developed for

While the piezoelectric effect has been around for some time, it has only recently caught interest as a potential sustainable energy harvesting device. Piezoelectric energy harvesting has been developed for shoes and panels, but has yet to be integrated into a marketable bicycle tire. For this thesis, the development and feasibility of a piezoelectric tire was done. This includes the development of a circuit that incorporates piezoceramic elements, energy harvesting circuitry, and an energy storage device. A single phase circuit was designed using an ac-dc diode rectifier. An electrolytic capacitor was used as the energy storage device. A financial feasibility was also done to determine targets for manufacturing cost and sales price. These models take into account market trends for high performance tires, economies of scale, and the possibility of government subsidies. This research will help understand the potential for the marketability of a piezoelectric energy harvesting tire that can create electricity for remote use. This study found that there are many obstacles that must be addressed before a piezoelectric tire can be marketed to the general public. The power output of this device is miniscule compared to an alkaline battery. In order for this device to approach the power output of an alkaline battery the weight of the device would also become an issue. Additionally this device is very costly compared to the average bicycle tire. Lastly, this device is extreme fragile and easily broken. In order for this device to become marketable the issues of power output, cost, weight, and durability must all be successfully overcome.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Design, simulation, and analysis of domestic solar water heating systems in Phoenix, Arizona

Description

Research was conducted to quantify the energy and cost savings of two different domestic solar water heating systems compared to an all-electric water heater for a four-person household in Phoenix,

Research was conducted to quantify the energy and cost savings of two different domestic solar water heating systems compared to an all-electric water heater for a four-person household in Phoenix, Arizona. The knowledge gained from this research will enable utilities to better align incentives and consumers to make more informed decisions prior to purchasing a solar water heater. Daily energy and temperature data were collected in a controlled, closed environment lab. Three mathematical models were designed in TRNSYS 17, a transient system simulation tool. The data from the lab were used to validate the TRNSYS models, and the TRNSYS results were used to project annual cost and energy savings for the solar water heaters. The projected energy savings for a four-person household in Phoenix, Arizona are 80% when using the SunEarth® system with an insulated and glazed flat-plate collector, and 49% when using the FAFCO® system with unglazed, non-insulated flat-plate collectors. Utilizing all available federal, state, and utility incentives, a consumer could expect to recoup his or her investment after the fifth year if purchasing a SunEarth® system, and after the eighth year if purchasing a FAFCO® system. Over the 20-year analysis period, a consumer could expect to save $2,519 with the SunEarth® system, and $971 with the FAFCO® system.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Power rating of photovoltaic modules using a new outdoor method

Description

Photovoltaic (PV) modules are typically rated at three test conditions: STC (standard test conditions), NOCT (nominal operating cell temperature) and Low E (low irradiance). The current thesis deals with the

Photovoltaic (PV) modules are typically rated at three test conditions: STC (standard test conditions), NOCT (nominal operating cell temperature) and Low E (low irradiance). The current thesis deals with the power rating of PV modules at twenty-three test conditions as per the recent International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standard of IEC 61853 – 1. In the current research, an automation software tool developed by a previous researcher of ASU – PRL (ASU Photovoltaic Reliability Laboratory) is validated at various stages. Also in the current research, the power rating of PV modules for four different manufacturers is carried out according to IEC 61853 – 1 standard using a new outdoor test method. The new outdoor method described in this thesis is very different from the one reported by a previous researcher of ASU – PRL. The new method was designed to reduce the labor hours in collecting the current-voltage ( I – V) curves at various temperatures and irradiance levels. The power matrices for all the four manufacturers were generated using the I – V data generated at different temperatures and irradiance levels and the translation procedures described in IEC 60891 standard. All the measurements were carried out on both clear and cloudy days using an automated 2 – axis tracker located at ASU – PRL, Mesa, Arizona. The modules were left on the 2 – axis tracker for 12 continuous days and the data was continuously and automatically collected for every two minutes from 6 am to 6 pm. In order to obtain the I – V data at wide range of temperatures and irradiance levels, four identical (or nearly identical) modules were simultaneously installed on the 2 – axis tracker with and without thermal insulators on the back of the modules and with and without mesh screens on the front of the modules. Several issues related to the automation software were uncovered and the required improvement in the software has been suggested. The power matrices for four manufacturers have been successfully generated using the new outdoor test method developed in this work. The data generated in this work has been extensively analyzed for accuracy and for performance efficiency comparison at various temperatures and irradiance levels.

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Date Created
  • 2012

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Standalone mild hybrid system development and application for non-hybrid vehicles

Description

While the implementation of both mild hybrid and start-stop technology is widespread as a factory option in newer vehicles, the adaptation of hybrid technology to older or unequipped vehicles has

While the implementation of both mild hybrid and start-stop technology is widespread as a factory option in newer vehicles, the adaptation of hybrid technology to older or unequipped vehicles has not been fully realized. As such, a straight forward hybrid conversion system that is easily adapted to different vehicles regardless of drivetrain configuration, has been developed and applied to a test vehicle for less than $2,000. System performance was recorded both before and after hybridization using real world drive cycle tracking charts. The vehicle established a fuel economy baseline of 22.93 mpg, and achieved 26.58 mpg after the conversion. This corresponds to a 15.92% increase in fuel economy. Accounting for initial system costs and annual fuel saving, this corresponds to a 6-year payback period. Based on these results, it can be concluded that an inexpensive aftermarket hybrid system is both feasible and effective at improving fuel economy.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Microstructure Development in Direct Metal Laser Sintered Inconel Alloy 718

Description

The microstructure development of Inconel alloy 718 (IN718) during conventional processing has been extensively studied and much has been discovered as to the mechanisms behind the exceptional creep resistance that

The microstructure development of Inconel alloy 718 (IN718) during conventional processing has been extensively studied and much has been discovered as to the mechanisms behind the exceptional creep resistance that the alloy exhibits. More recently with the development of large scale 3D printing of alloys such as IN718 a new dimension of complexity has emerged in the understanding of alloy microstructure development, hence, potential alloy development opportunity for IN718.

This study is a broad stroke at discovering possible alternate microstructures developing in Direct-Metal-Laser-Sintering (DMLS) processed IN718 compared to those in conventional wrought IN718. The main inspiration for this study came from creep test results from several DMLS IN718 samples at Honeywell that showed a significant

improvement in creep capabilities for DMLS718 compared to cast and wrought IN718 (Honeywell).

From this data the steady-state creep rates were evaluated and fitted to current creep models in order to identify active creep mechanisms in conventional and DMLS IN718 and illuminate the potential factors responsible for the improved creep behavior in DMSL processed IN718.

Because rapid heating and cooling can introduce high internal stress and impact microstructural development, such as gamma double prime formations (Oblak et al.), leading to differences in material behavior, DMLS and conventional IN718 materials are studied using SEM and TEM characterization to investigate sub-micron and/or nano-scale

microstructural differences developed in the DMLS samples as a result of their complex thermal history and internal stress.

The preliminary analysis presented in this body of work is an attempt to better understand the effect of DMLS processing in quest for development of optimization techniques for DMLS as a whole. A historical sketch of nickel alloys and the development of IN718 is given. A literature review detailing the microstructure of IN718 is presented. Creep data analysis and identification of active creep mechanisms are evaluated. High-resolution microstructural characterization of DMLS and wrought IN718 are discussed in detail throughout various chapters of this thesis. Finally, an initial effort in developing a processing model that would allow for parameter optimization is presented.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2017