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Technoeconomic modelling and optimisation of solar combined heat and power systems based on flat-box PVT collectors for domestic applications

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Title: Technoeconomic modelling and optimisation of solar combined heat and power systems based on flat-box PVT collectors for domestic applications
Authors: Herrando, M
Ramos, A
Freeman, J
Zabalza, I
Markides, CN
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: We investigate solar combined heat and power (S-CHP) systems based on hybrid photovoltaic-thermal (PVT) collectors for the simultaneous provision of domestic hot water (DHW), space heating (SH) and power to single- family homes. The systems include PVT collectors with a polycarbonate flat-box structure design, a water storage tank, an auxiliary heater and a battery storage subsystem. A methodology is developed for modelling the en- ergetic and economic performance of such PVT-based S-CHP systems, which is used to optimally size and operate systems for covering the energy demands of single-family reference households at three selected locations: Athens (Greece), London (UK) and Zaragoza (Spain). The results show that optimised systems are capable of covering ∼65% of the annual household electricity demands in Athens, London and Zaragoza when employing 14.0, 17.0 and 12.4 m2 collector array areas respectively, while also covering a significant fraction of the thermal energy demands in Athens (∼60%) and Zaragoza (∼45%); even in London, almost 30% of the reference household’s thermal demand is covered by such a system. A corresponding economic analysis reveals that, despite the suitability of Athens’ weather conditions for implementing such solar-energy systems, the payback time (PBT) of the optimised S-CHP system in Athens is 15.6 years in contrast to the 11.6 years predicted for Zaragoza, due to the lower electricity prices in Greece. On the other hand, the high carbon emission factor of the electricity grid in Greece makes these systems particularly promising at this location. Specifically, the in- vestigated systems have the potential to displace 3.87, 1.65 and 1.54 tons of CO2 per year in Athens, London and Zaragoza, when substituting the conventional means for household energy provision (i.e. grid electricity and gas- fired boilers). Furthermore, it is demonstrated that the optimised systems outperform benchmark equivalent systems comprising conventional sheet-and-tube PVT collectors in all studied cases, by covering similar or slightly (up to 3%) higher fractions of the household electrical and thermal demands with 9–11% lower PBTs, and that PV-only solutions displace 3.56, 1.21, 1.22tCO2/year (up to ∼20–25% lower) for the same area. Overall, the results suggest that the newly proposed polymeric flat-box PVT collector designs are an improved economic proposition over their conventional equivalents, but that the cost of this technology still remains high relative to PV and that if decarbonisation is a desirable goal, especially in high population-density regions with space restrictions, it is important to consider how to promote this technology.
Issue Date: 1-Nov-2018
Date of Acceptance: 13-Jul-2018
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/62743
DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.enconman.2018.07.045
ISSN: 0196-8904
Publisher: Elsevier
Start Page: 67
End Page: 85
Journal / Book Title: Energy Conversion and Management
Volume: 175
Copyright Statement: © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/BY/4.0/)
Sponsor/Funder: Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC)
Funder's Grant Number: EP/M025012/1
Keywords: 0906 Electrical And Electronic Engineering
Publication Status: Published online
Conference Place: United Kingdom
Online Publication Date: 2018-09-04
Appears in Collections:Chemical Engineering
Faculty of Engineering