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Techno-economic study of the impact of blackouts on the viability of connecting an off-grid PV-diesel hybrid system in Tanzania to the national power grid
Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Energy Technology.
Dalarna University, School of Technology and Business Studies, Energy Technology.
2018 (English)In: Energy Conversion and Management, ISSN 0196-8904, E-ISSN 1879-2227, Vol. 171, no 1, p. 647-658Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

National electrification plans for many countries with a low level of electrification promote the implementation of centralized and decentralized electrification in parallel. This paper explores different ways of utilizing an established off-grid PV-diesel hybrid system when the national grid becomes available. This is a rather unique starting point within the otherwise well-explored area of rural electrification. With particular focus on the impact of blackouts in the national grid, we evaluate the economic viability of some alternatives: to continue to use the off-grid micro-grid, to connect the existing micro-grid with or without battery backup to the national grid, or to use the national grid only. Our simulation results in HOMER demonstrate that with a grid without blackouts, there are few benefits to maintain the existing system. Low grid-connection fees, low tariffs and low revenues from selling excess electricity to the grid contribute to this result despite the fact that the system does not carry any investment costs. With a grid with blackouts, it is beneficial to maintain the system. The extent of blackouts and the load on the system determine which system configuration is most feasible. The results make clear the importance of taking blackouts in the national grid into consideration when possible system configurations are being evaluated. This is rarely quantified in studies comparing different electrification alternatives, but deserves more attention.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 171, no 1, p. 647-658
Keywords [en]
Grid-connected micro-grid; PV-hybrid system; Decentralized rural electrification; HOMER; Blackouts; Techno-economic
National Category
Energy Engineering
Research subject
Energy, Forests and Built Environments
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:du-27985DOI: 10.1016/j.enconman.2018.05.107ISI: 000442972500051Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85048282991OAI: oai:DiVA.org:du-27985DiVA, id: diva2:1223092
Available from: 2018-06-25 Created: 2018-06-25 Last updated: 2019-12-05Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Micro-grids supplied by renewable energy: Improving technical and social feasibility
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Micro-grids supplied by renewable energy: Improving technical and social feasibility
2019 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Universal access to electricity stands high on the global agenda and is regarded as essential for positive development in sectors such as health care, education, poverty reduction, food production and climate change. Decentralized, off-grid electrification is deemed an important complement to centralized grid extension. By utilizing a renewable energy source, solar technology for the generation of electricity, photovoltaics (PV) is being considered as a way forward to minimize the environmental problems related to energy use.

This thesis aims to contribute to improving the technical and social feasibility of PV and PV-diesel hybrid micro-grids for the purpose of providing access to electricity to people in rural areas of countries with low level access to electricity. In line with these general aims, the focus has been to address three questions related to challenges in three phases of rural electrification. The work has a multi-disciplinary approach, addressing mainly technical and social aspects of long-term sustainability of micro-grids, in a local context, and the changes these are intended to generate. One specific micro-grid in Tanzania has been used as a major case study.

The thesis is developed through three papers, all presenting methodologies or aspects for investigation in rural electrification projects and studies in general, and for PV-diesel hybrid micro-grids in particular. Paper I puts forward a methodology to facilitate non-social scientific researchers to take social aspects increasingly into consideration. Paper II is a guideline to support system users to increasingly apply an evaluation based system operation. Paper III specifically highlights the importance to consider blackouts when investigating how an existing off-grid PV-diesel hybrid system shall be utilized when a national grid becomes available.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2019. p. 53
Keywords
Rural electrification, Electricity access, Decentralized, Off-grid, Photovoltacs, PV-hybrid, Micro-grid, Multi-disciplinary, Sociotechnical
National Category
Energy Engineering
Research subject
Energy and Built Environments
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:du-31156 (URN)
Presentation
2019-04-04, B311, Röda vägen 3, Borlänge, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2019-12-05 Created: 2019-12-05 Last updated: 2019-12-05Bibliographically approved

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Bastholm, CarolineFiedler, Frank

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