A Review on Computational Fluid Dynamics Applications in the Design and Optimization of Crossflow Hydro TurbinesRead the full article
Journal of Renewable Energy publishes papers relating to the science and technology of renewable energy generation, distribution, storage, and management. It also covers the environmental, societal, and economic impacts of renewable energy.
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Performance Analysis of Clear Sky Global Horizontal Irradiance Models: Simple Models Adapted for Local Conditions
Evaluation of the maximum solar energy potential of a given area for possible deployment of solar energy technologies requires assessment of clear sky solar irradiance for the region under consideration. Such localized assessment is critical for optimal sizing of the technology to be deployed in order to realize the anticipated output. As the measurements are not always available where they are needed, models may be used to estimate them. In this study, three different models were adapted for the geographical location of the area under study and used to estimate clear sky global horizontal irradiance (GHI) at three locations in the subtropical desert climate of Namibia. The three models, selected on the basis of input requirements, were used to compute clear sky GHI at Kokerboom, Arandis, and Auas. The models were validated and evaluated for performance using irradiance data measured at each of the sites for a period of three years by computing statistical parameters such as mean bias error (MBE), root mean square error (RMSE), and the coefficient of determination (R2), normalized MBE, and normalized RMSE. Comparative results between modelled and measured data showed that the models fit well the measured data, with normalized root mean square error values in the range 4–8%, while the R2 value was above 98% for the three models. The adapted models can thus be used to compute clear sky GHI at these study areas as well as in other regions with similar climatic conditions.
Design, Construction, and Evaluation of the Performance of Dual-Axis Sun Trucker Parabolic Solar Cooker and Comparison of Cooker
Energy demand is increasing due to population increment and industrialization. To meet this energy demand, technologies that use renewable energy such as solar energy are being developed. A parabolic solar cooker is one of the main solar cookers, which can cook food and boil water at a high temperature within a short period. This study aimed to design, construct, and evaluate the performance of the constructed parabolic solar cookers. Moreover, this study aimed to compare the constructed cooker with firewood, charcoal, kerosene, and electricity in terms of cooking time and energy cost. The cooker was constructed using different materials such as old satellite dishes, tyres, steel, and aluminum foil. The aperture diameter, aperture area, receiver diameter, receiver area, depth of the parabola, focal length, rim angle, circumference of the circle, surface area, length of the circumference, and concentration of the cooker were 1.8 m, 2.54 m2, 0.16 m, 0.02 m2, 0.3 m, 0.67 m, 67.38°, 5.76 m, 2.81 m2, 5.76 m, and 123.46, respectively. The cooker can track the sun from north to south and from east to west. The performance of the cooker was evaluated by calculating the efficiency and power. The output energy, input energy, and average upcoming solar radiation of the constructed parabolic solar cooker were 0.182 kW/m2, 1.691 kW/m2, and 0.665 kW/m2, respectively. The efficiency and power of the cooker were 10.75% and 0.3 kW/hr, respectively. The constructed parabolic solar cooker relatively showed better performance in cooking different foods. A family, which has five members, was considered to compare the constructed cooker with other fuels in terms of energy cost of cooking. Since the parabolic solar cooker does not have any energy cost, it can save the energy cost of cooking foods. Therefore, parabolic solar cookers have a great advantage for developing countries including Ethiopia.
Solvent Extraction of Jatropha Oil for Biodiesel Production: Effects of Solvent-to-Solid Ratio, Particle Size, Type of Solvent, Extraction Time, and Temperature on Oil Yield
The aim of this study was to examine the effects of solvent-to-solid ratio, particle size, extraction time, and temperature on the extraction of Jatropha oil using three organic solvents, i.e., n-hexane, petroleum ether, and ethanol. The Soxhlet extraction method was used, and the parameters were varied in the following ranges: extraction temperature of 24–80°C, extraction time of 2 to 8 h, solvent-to-solid ratio of 4 : 1 to 7 : 1, and particle size of 0.5–0.8 mm. After obtaining optimal conditions, a large volume of Jatropha oil was prepared, purified, and subjected to analysis of quality parameters. It was found that the oil content of the Jatropha curcas L. seeds used was 48.2 ± 0.12% w/w. The highest oil yield of 47.5 ± 0.11% w/w corresponding to an oil recovery of 98.6 ± 0.3% w/w was obtained with n-hexane under the following conditions: solvent-to-solid ratio of 6 : 1, particle size of 0.5–0.8 mm, extraction time of 7 h, and extraction temperature of 68°C. This was followed by that of petroleum ether (46.2 ± 0.15% w/w) and lastly by ethanol (43 ± 0.18% w/w). The quality parameters of the oil extracted compared favorably well with most of the values reported in the literature, suggesting that the oil was of good quality for biodiesel production. Environmental and safety concerns over the use of hexane pose a great challenge. Thus, ethanol, which is environmentally benign, is recommended for application. The conditions for ethanol extraction that gave high oil yield were as follows: extraction temperature of 70°C, extraction time of 7 h, solvent-to-solid ratio of 6 : 1, particle size of 0.5–0.8 mm, and oil yield of 43 ± 0.18% w/w corresponding to an oil recovery of 89.2 ± 0.4% w/w.
Numerical Modeling and Optimization of Lead-Free Hybrid Double Perovskite Solar Cell by Using SCAPS-1D
The highest power conversion efficiency (PCE) for organic-inorganic perovskite solar cells based on lead is reported as 25.2% in 2019. Lead-based hybrid perovskite materials are used in several photovoltaics applications, but these are not highly favored due to the toxicity of lead and volatility of organic cations. On the other hand, hybrid lead-free double perovskite has no such harm. In this research study, SCAPS numerical simulation is utilized to evaluate and compare the results of perovskite solar cell based on double perovskite and standard perovskite as an active layer. The results show that the power conversion efficiency obtained in the case of is 24.98%, while in the case of , it is reported as 26.42%. This indicates that the hybrid organic-inorganic double perovskite has the ability to replace hybrid organic-inorganic perovskite to expand next-generation lead-free harmless materials for solar cell applications.
Performance Characteristics of a Cooking Stove Improved with Sawdust as an Insulation Material
In developing countries, energy demand from biomass has increased due to exponential population growth. This has translated into voluminous quantities of wood being used. The situation is exacerbated by the popular use of inefficient stoves with low thermal insulation, hence contributing to deforestation. In this study, the performance of a cooking stove improved with sawdust as an insulation material was assessed. An insulated fire stove prototype of 26 cm saucepan diameter was designed, constructed, and cast with sawdust and clay in a ratio of 1 : 1 (as the first layer) and sawdust alone as the second layer. The developed stove was tested using a water boiling test to establish its operating performance. The thermal efficiency of the stove was assessed using indigenous wood fuels used in rural Uganda (Senna spectabilis, Pinus caribaea, and Eucalyptus grandis). Computational fluid dynamics was used to simulate the temperature and velocity fields within the combustion chamber and for generating temperature contours of the stove. Obtained results indicated that S. spectabilis had the highest thermal efficiency of 35.5 ± 2.5%, followed by E. grandis (25.7 ± 1.7%) and lastly P. caribaea (19.0 ± 1.2%) in the cold start phase when compared with traditional stoves. The stove remained cold as hot air was restricted to the combustion chamber with decreasing temperature contours toward the outer wall up to the ambient temperature. The velocity flow remained constant as the chamber was colored green throughout due to the shielding of the stove with sawdust as insulation. The heat flux generated indicated that a thick layer of 6 cm or more could ensure good insulation, and this could be further reduced by introducing more sawdust. The designed stove has the potential to reduce biomass consumption and emissions when compared to traditional cookstoves. The inclusion of a chimney draught in the fire stove prototype could reduce smoke and increase thermal efficiency. Further studies should focus on minimizing the thickness of the clay-sawdust (first) layer and increasing the thickness of the sawdust layer to reduce the weight of the fire stove.
A Review of Intermediate Pyrolysis as a Technology of Biomass Conversion for Coproduction of Biooil and Adsorption Biochar
The agenda to utilize and efficiently convert biomass has been raised to alleviate environmental problems and pressure on the reliance on fossil fuel. Intermediate pyrolysis has the ability to treat different biomasses and coproduction of biooil and adsorption biochar. This review article aims to evaluate the appropriateness of intermediate pyrolysis for the coproduction of biooil and adsorption biochar. It was observed that coproduced biooil is of high quality, stable, and miscible that can be used directly to existing engines or be easily blended. The biochar coproduced is good for adsorption but is not stable for microbial attack and hence unsuitable in soil treatment but for hydrometallurgy. Since the process is capable of treating waste biomass, it is an opportunity for further investigations in areas where wastes are plenty and less utilized. To increase the effectiveness of this technology for coproduction, optimizing parameters, design of efficient reactors, and use of catalyst must be worked upon.