CCRES – ALGAE BIOFUELS AND AQUAPONICS

 
 
 

CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
 
 
Algae, the Source of Biofuels, and Aquaponics
 
 
 
 
Algae can be used as important types of biomass materials from which the biofuels can be obtained. Algae absorb the energy from the sun in the presence of carbon dioxide and store it. A number of processes can be carried out on algae to convert it into biofuels like alcohol, biodiesel and even biogas. The biodiesel obtained from algae can be mixed with petroleum diesel and it can be used for running of trucks, cars and many types of engines that use diesel. Biodiesel can also be used as the fuel in the jets, airplanes, refineries and pipelines. The biomass obtained from algae can be used as the renewable sources of energy since it is available in abundant quantities and will be available for unlimited period of time.
 
One of the important advantages of algae is that it can grow in any type of water like salt, fresh, and even contaminated water. It can be grown in vast sea and river water, small rain water ponds and even commercial or domestic manmade made ponds. Algae has the potential to yield 30 times more energy than the crops grown on land, which are currently being used to produce the biofuels. This could encourage the use of algae for producing biofuels instead of the land that can be used for producing food crops. The harvesting cycle of algae is 1 to 10 days, which permits several harvests in short period of time and using the resources more effectively.

Algae and Aquaponics
 
As described earlier, algae can be grown in any type of water and in type of water storage system. Besides the naturally occurring seas, rivers, and ponds, it can also grow in manmade ponds. The manmade ponds can be at homes for domestic purpose or in large lands made for commercial production of algae. For the better growth of algae some nutrients may be added to water. Besides using these ponds for algae growth they can also be used for the growth of fishes and other aquatic animals.
 
Aquaponics is the system where one can grow the fishes and plants like algae in one integrated system. The waste given by the fishes act as important nutrients for the plants, while the cover of plants provides the natural filter for the fishes in the living areas. Aquaponics is the combination of words aquaculture and hydroponics. Aquaculture is the cultivation of fish or other water based animals, while hydroponics is the growth of plants in water. In aquaponics one can grow the water animals as well the plants at the same time. Thus the manmade small or big pond can be effectively used for growing fishes as well plants like algae.
 
The plants usually prefer warm-water so the water in aquaponics is also warm. The fishes grown in aquaponics are of warm-water type and not of cold-water type. The fishes grown in aquaponics can be consumed by the owner, they can be given to the friend, can be sold in the market to earn money or they can be kept as the pets. The harvesting period of fishes ranges from 7 to 9 months. When aquaponics is combined with a controlled environment greenhouse, high quality crops can be grown throughout the year and in any part of the world.
 
Aquaponics comprises of the water tank where the fishes are raised and fed. There is a chamber, where the uneaten foods and other particles and solids are collected. The bio-filter converts ammonia into nitrates, which act as the nutrients for the plants. There is also a portion for the growth of the plants. The lowest part of tank is a sump from where fresh water is supplied to the tank and old water is removed.
 
The concept of aquaponics can be extended for the growth of algae. Instead of the plants, one can grow algae, which has the harvest cycle of one to ten days. At the same time the fishes can also be grown. In the period of about nine months, while the fishes will harvest once, algae will be harvested several times. The large quantities of algae collected this way can be used as the biomass for producing the biofuels like biodiesel.
 
The advantages of using aquaponics for the growth of algae is that in a single place harvesting of both, the algae as well as fishes can be done. This would increase the profitability for the owner if they already have aquaculture or hydroponics. While earlier they would get only a single product from the infrastructure, they could now get two products. Since harvesting time of algae is short, it would keep the owner busy and this could become a continuous source of income for them.
 
The major limitations of aquaponics are the high initial costs required for housing, tank, plumbing, pumps and bedding. One should also do thorough research for the chances of success of such project. The system also has number of points of failure and requires intensive maintenance.
 
 
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 CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
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News and Events by CCRES May 09, 2012

Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources

News and Events May 09, 2012

Energy Department Offers $5 Million to Spur EV and Alt Fuels Adoption

The Energy Department on May 8 announced that up to $5 million in funding is available this year to help expand the use of alternative fuel vehicles, including electric vehicles (EVs), in cities and towns across the country. The funding will help cut through red tape for homeowners and businesses, provide training for mechanics and first responders, and support community planning to expand fueling infrastructure. The Energy Department anticipates awarding 10 to 20 projects this year to be completed within two years. The support of alternative fuel vehicles is part of a strategy to increase energy security in the United States, reduce emissions, and help drivers save money.
This initiative will help communities streamline and quicken permitting processes, and coordinate alternative fuel vehicle and EV infrastructure deployment across state, regional, and local governments. Selected projects will also help communities build workforces with the skills to facilitate these vehicles and infrastructure by training first responders and mechanics. In addition, they will provide resources, such as educational materials and tools, to help consumers understand the economic and environmental benefits of alternative fuel vehicles, and to choose the right vehicle for their needs.
The Energy Department seeks proposals that address barriers to the adoption of these vehicles, provide safety training, coordinate initiatives, and drive market development and transformation to make alternative fuel vehicles and fueling infrastructure widely available. Proposed projects should cover each of these areas. This funding opportunity does not provide for the purchase or installation of vehicles or infrastructure. DOE strongly encourages organizations to form teams that include one or more active, designated Clean Cities coalition as well as other partners with relevant experience and expertise. Applications are due by June 18, 2012. See the Energy Department Progress Alert and the funding opportunity announcement.
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Energy Department Announces $2.5 Million for Fuel Cell Baggage Vehicles

The Energy Department announced on April 25 up to $2.5 million in funding is available this year to demonstrate and deploy fuel cell electric vehicles for transporting passenger baggage at major U.S. airports. Up to three projects selected for funding will demonstrate first-generation, fuel cell-powered baggage-towing tractors under real-world operating conditions, and will collect and analyze data to test their performance and cost-effectiveness. The funding will help industry bring advanced fuel cell technologies into emerging markets. It will also provide airlines and airports with new choices for ground support operations that cut energy costs, air pollution, and petroleum use.
The Energy Department seeks applicants to demonstrate and test the performance and economic viability of advanced fuel cell systems for up to three years. The 50% cost-shared projects will supply both information on fuel cell system operation and data on the economics of these vehicles to the Hydrogen Secure Data Center at the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory for analysis and comparison. Data will be collected from actual airport operations so that engineers and economic analysts can assess the technology’s performance, durability, and cost-effectiveness under the real-world conditions of commercial airports. Conclusions will be drawn from the data to evaluate the commercial viability of this fuel cell application, and the data will be shared with fuel cell manufacturers, helping to improve their designs and optimize overall performance and costs. See the DOE Progress Alert and the funding opportunity announcement.
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University Regional Clean Energy Business Winners Named

The Energy Department on May 4 announced the regional winners of its National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition. The event inspires university teams across the country to create new businesses and commercialize promising energy technologies developed at U.S. universities and DOE’s national laboratories. The regional finalists—Northwestern University, University of Utah, University of Central Florida, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University, and Columbia University—will go on to compete in the first national competition in Washington, D.C., June 12 to 13.
The competition aims to promote entrepreneurship in clean energy technologies that will boost U.S. competitiveness, bring cutting-edge clean energy solutions to the market, and strengthen the nation’s economic prosperity. Each team of students identified a promising clean energy technology from a university or national lab and created a business plan around the technology that detailed how they could help bring it to market. For example, MIT teamed with SolidEnergy to leverage its battery technology innovation, which improves the safety and energy density of rechargeable lithium batteries and is intended to accelerate the deployment of electric vehicles. The contest includes financing, product design, scaling up production and marketing. Each of the six regional competitions across the country was run by a nonprofit or university that worked with teams over the last three years. Each of the winning regional teams has already received $100,000 in prizes to continue plans to commercialize the products. See the DOE press release.
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Interior Department Flips Switch on First Public Lands Solar Project

Photo of a solar panels in the desert.

Officials flipped the switch to start Silver State North, a 50-megawatt solar plant located 40 miles south of Las Vegas, Nevada.
Credit: Enbridge
U.S. Department of Interior Secretary Ken Salazar on May 7 flipped the switch to start the first large-scale solar energy facility on U.S. public lands delivering power to consumers. Silver State North is a 50-megawatt plant located 40 miles south of Las Vegas, Nevada, that will use photovoltaic (PV) technology to generate enough power for about 9,000 Nevada homes. The plant was built on 618 acres of public land managed by Interior’s Bureau of Land Management, after the solar facility underwent full environmental analysis and public review. It was developed by First Solar and is owned by Enbridge.
Prior to 2009, there were no solar energy projects permitted on public lands. Since then, the Interior Department has authorized 29 large-scale renewable energy projects on or involving public lands, including 16 solar facilities, 5 wind farms, and 8 geothermal plants. See the Interior Department press release.
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Wind Turbine Installations in Q1 Jump 50% from Q1 in 2011: Report

The U.S. wind power industry posted one of its busiest quarters ever in the first quarter of 2012, according to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA). The United States saw 1,695 megawatts (MW) of wind capacity installed in that period, with 788 new turbines producing power in 17 states. No other first quarter has been as strong for the American wind power industry, AWEA reported. The wind energy industry installed 52% more MW in the first quarter than it did in the same quarter last year.
During the first quarter, California (370 MW), Oregon (308 MW) and Texas (254 MW) led all states for adding the most wind power. Rounding out the top five were Washington (127 MW) and Pennsylvania (121 MW). One notable trend, previously highlighted in AWEA’s 2011 annual market report, is that with ever-improving technology, wind power is accessing wind resources in geographic areas considered to have inadequate wind resource just a few years ago. Topping that category of states formerly considered to have inadequate wind resources is New Hampshire with 388% growth. See the AWEA press release.
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CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES (CCRES)

  special thanks to U.S. Department of Energy | USA.gov

Maine Project Takes Historic Step Forward in U.S. Tidal Energy Deployment

A pilot project that will generate electricity from Maine’s ocean tides could be a game-changer for America’s tidal energy industry at-large.
At the direction of the Maine Public Utilities Commission, three of the state’s electricity distributors will purchase electricity generated by Ocean Renewable Power Company (ORPC)—the company leading the Maine pilot project. Once finalized, the contracts will be in place for 20 years, making them the first long-term tidal energy power purchase agreements in the United States. The implications of these agreements are far-reaching, helping to advance the commercialization of tidal energy technologies. The project, which has brought more than $14 million into Maine’s economy and has created or helped retain more than 100 jobs, is supported by $10 million in funding from the Energy Department.
For the pilot phase of the project, ORPC will deploy cross flow turbine devices in Cobscook Bay, at the mouth of the Bay of Fundy. These devices are designed to generate electricity over a range of water currents, capturing energy on both ebb and flood tides without the need for repositioning. To read the complete story, see the DOE Energy Blog.

Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources (CCRES)

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CCRES – ALGAE AND BIOFUEL

 


CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
 
 ALGAE AND BIOFUEL
 

 

 

Algae: An Important Source for Making Biofuels


Biofuels are the alternative fuels like ethanol, butanol, biodiesel, methane and others obtained from the biomass. Biomasses are the wasted materials obtained from the plants, animals and human beings. With the increasing prices of the crude oil and importance of achieving self-reliance in energy and growing concern for the environment alternative fuels are receiving more government and public attention.

 

The government of US has set the targets for using of 36 billion gallons of biofuels by the year 2022 as a result most of the gasoline sold here is mixed with ethanol. Similarly, biodiesel mixed with petroleum diesel is found to create lesser pollution without affecting the performance of the engines. Methane gas is also increasingly used for the production of electricity and also driving the vehicles. Ethanol, biodiesel, and methane are all biofuels obtained from biomass like wasted crops, crops containing sugar, vegetable oil etc.

 

Due to increasing demands of the biofuels, many farmers are now tempted to raise the crops that would yield biofuels instead of the food crops. This leads to misuse of limited resources available in the form energy, fertilizers and pesticides. In some parts of the world large areas of forests have been cut down to grow sugarcane for ethanol and soybeans and palm-oil tress for making biodiesel. US government is making efforts to make sure the farming for biomass materials does not competes with the farming of food crops and that the farming of biomass would require lesser fertilizers and pesticides.


Algae used as Biomass

 

One of the most important promising sources of biofuels is algae. Algae are single celled (most of them) microorganisms that grow in salt water, fresh water and even in contaminated water. Algae can grow in sea, rivers, ponds, and also on land not suitable for production. Like other plants, algae also absorb energy from the sun in the presence of atmospheric carbon dioxide by the process called photosynthesis. Just like other wasted plants and crops, algae also carry energy and it can be used as an important biomass material. There are more than 65,000 known species of algae having different colors like green, red, brown and blue-green that offer wide range of options for obtaining the biofuels from them.

 

Algae keep growing extensively in the nature and it generates lots of waste that could even create problems of disposal. Since algae carries energy, it can be used as an important source of alternative or renewable energy since algae is available in abundant quantities that can last forever. Algae can be used as the biomass materials to obtain various biofuels. Various colonies of algae can be considered to be small biological factories containing lots of energy.


Biofuels from Obtained from Algae

 

Like the wastes from the plants, the algae can also be used as the biomass to produce various types of biofuels. One of the most popular types of biofuels, biodiesel, is obtained from the vegetable oil. The same biodiesel can also be obtained from algae oil. The biodiesel from algae can be mixed with the petroleum diesel and used for the running of the vehicles. It can also be used as the fuel for jets, airplanes, refineries, and pipelines. The biodiesel obtained from algae can be readily used with automobile and jet engines without the need to make any modifications in the engine. It meets all the specifications of the petroleum diesel fuel.

 

The algae biomass can also be used for making ethanol and butanol biofuels, which are type of alcohols. Butanol is considered to have more efficiency than ethanol and it is obtained from dried algae that act as a biomass. The carbohydrates extracted from algae are converted into natural sugars, which are then converted into butyric, lactic and acetic acids by the process of fermentation. Further fermentation of butyric acid is carried out to produce butanol.

 

The biomass obtained from algae can also be used to produce biogas that contains methane and carbon dioxide. Methane is an important component of natural gas, so this biogas can be used just like the natural gas for producing heating effect and also to produce electricity.


Advantages of using Algae as Biomass

 

One of the important advantages of algae it that it can be grown in almost any type of water: salt, fresh, and even contaminated water. It can be grown in vast sea and river water, small rain water ponds and even commercial or domestic manmade ponds. It can also be grown on non-arable unproductive lands increasing the utility of waste lands.

 

Another important advantage of growing algae for producing biofuels is that it does not displace the farmland used for growing the food crops. The farmers using various resources for producing biodiesel instead of the food crops has been one of the major concerns for the government, algae helps solving this tricky problem.

 

Algae have the potential to yield 30 times more energy than the crops grown on land, which are currently being used to produce the biofuels. This would further encourage the use of algae for producing biofuels and land for producing food crops.

 

Another important advantage of algae is that it uses carbon dioxide for its growth. Thus the pollution causing carbon dioxide produced from the other sources can be utilized to grow algae, which helps keeping the environment cleaner. 

 

 

CCRES 
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 CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
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CCRES – BIODIESEL

 

CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
 
Biodiesel
 
The Popular Biofuel
 

The fuels obtained from biomass materials, like the waste generated by plants, animals and humans beings, are called as the biofuels. The biofuels are well known alternative fuels used for the production of heat and electricity and also driving the vehicles. The biomass is considered to be a type of renewable sources of energy since it is available in unlimited quantity and will continue to do so for unlimited period of time. One of the most popular types of biofuels is biodiesel.
 

Biodiesel is obtained from the fresh or used vegetable oil and animal fats by the process called transesterification. Efforts are being made to obtain biodiesel from waste grease and oils. The modern methods have been discovered to obtain biodiesel from algae as well.
 

Early Diesel Engine and Biodiesel
 

Rudolph Diesel had invented diesel engine in the period dating back to 1890. Though the present diesel engine is being run entirely on petroleum diesel fuel, in the days of invention itself Rudolph had envisioned that his engine could be powered by vegetable oil and could be used in the remote areas of farmlands where petroleum diesel is not available, but where the vegetable oil can be obtained easily from the plants. This way the farmers would be able to run the vehicles used by them for farming by using the vegetable oil. Rudolph had carried out extensive research to run his engine on vegetable oil.
 

In fact biodiesel was one of the earliest fuels used for running the engines of the automobiles.

After Rudolph’s death in 1913, the gasoline including diesel became much cheaper so the design of Rudolph’s engine was modified so that it can run on petroleum diesel. It is indeed interesting to know that after almost 100 years, the engine developed by Rudolph is now being run on the same fuel i.e. biodiesel made from vegetable oil, as per its original vision.
 

Biodiesel used for Running Vehicles
 

As mentioned earlier, the original diesel engine was designed to run on biodiesel or vegetable oil. For all the vehicles manufactured after the year 1993 biodiesel can be used as the fuel in all diesel engines without making any changes in the fuel injection system. When one uses the biodiesel there may be very little or no change in the performance of the engine.
 

The properties of biodiesel are very similar to traditional diesel obtained from the crude oil. While the combustion of traditional diesel produces lots of air pollution and toxic gases, the burning of biodiesel is clean and it does not cause any environmental pollution.
 

Biodiesel can be used as the fuel for automobiles in the pure form or it can be mixed with petroleum diesel in various proportions to form the blends. The two most commonly used blends of biodiesel are B20 and B100. B20 is the blend of 20% of biodiesel and remaining percentage of petroleum diesel and is the most widely used blend in US. It also meets all the regulations under the Energy Policy Act (EPAct) documented in 1992. Most of the other fuel blends containing lesser than 20% of biodiesel can also used for the running the vehicles. B100 is the pure form of biodiesel and it can be used in the diesel engines only after making certain changes in the hosesand gaskets of the engine.
 

Controversies Related to Biodiesel
 

Now that biodiesel is being blended with petroleum diesel and is being used as the fuel, its demand is fast increasing. A number of farmers are tempted to grow the crops that would yield biodiesel at the cost of the food crops. Instead of using the fertilizers, pesticides and energy for the food crops, farmers are using them for the biodiesel crops. This leads to not only the misuse of the limited resources but also shortage of the food crops.
 

In some parts of the world large areas of forests have been cut down to grow sugarcane for ethanol and soybeans and palm-oil tress for making biodiesel. US government is making efforts to make sure the farming for biomass materials does not competes with the farming of food crops and that the farming of biomass would require lesser fertilizers and pesticides. A number of other sources for biodiesel are also being explored like used oils and greases and algae.
 

Benefits of Biodiesel
 

Here are some of the benefits of using biodiesel as a fuel:
 

1) Biodiesel can be easily blended with petroleum diesel and the mixture can be readily used for running the vehicles without carrying out any changes in the engine.
 

2) Though the properties of biodiesel are same as the petroleum diesel, the combustion of biodiesel produces no greenhouse and other gases that would harm the environment.

As the proportion of biodiesel increases in the petroleum diesel blend, its tendency to generate pollution reduces.
 

3) Biodiesel is made from plant oil and vegetable fats, which are biodegradable, so they can be easily disposed of. When biodiesel is leaked or split it does not harm the environment.
 

4) The country manufacturing and using biodiesel is less dependent on other countries for their fuel requirements. Biodiesel has the potential to make countries self-reliant for their future fuel requirements. Further, since biodiesel is obtained from the renewable source of energy, it could be considered an important fuel for future planning.
 
 
 
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CCRES – BIOMASS

 
 
CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
 
 BIOMASS
 
The organic or waste materials obtained from the plants and animals, is known as biomass. Since plants and animals contain energy, the biomass also contains energy. Plants get energy from the sun by the process of photosynthesis, while the animals eat plants; hence biomass is an important source of energy.
 
The energy obtained from biomass is called as biomass energy. The biomass energy is type of alternative or renewable energy since the plants and trees will keep on growing and generating the wastes continuously, so this source of energy will be available for unlimited period of time.
 
The various types of garbage collected in our cities are also a type of biomass. Though the living plants are not considered to be the biomass, the garbage left by them in the form of fallen leaves, dead trees, broken branches of the trees, wasted and leftover crops, chips and pieces of wood etc are all considered to be biomass. The bark and saw dust left from the lumber mills and even the tires and livestock manure can be considered as biomass.
 
The trash from the house and offices contains some paper products that cannot be recycled back to the other paper products but they can also be used as the biomass. Recycling such wastes for producing biomass fuel would reduce pressure on our landfills. It is unbelievable that all these materials that create lots of disposal problems can be used to generate energy that too in the form of electricity.
 
In US, California itself produces almost 60 million bone dry tons of biomass every year, of which almost five million tons is used to produce biomass energy in the form of electricity. The biomass collected in California comprises of lumber mills wastes, wooden waste collected from urban areas, residues from the agricultural lands and forests, and other livestock.
 
The wastes generated by the humans and animals like cows are also types of biomass. By using this type of biomass for producing energy it becomes easier to manage and control the landfills.

Biomass used as the Source of Energy
 
All the types of biomass contain one or the types of plants and animals wastes. When the biomass obtained from plants it is burnt it catches fire instantly or after some time and releases a lot of heat. During burning the chemical energy stored within the biomass is converted into heat energy. The heat produced during the burning of biomass can be used for a number of applications like heating water, heating the rooms, producing steam, cooking the food, and for other domestic and industrial applications.
 
Some decomposing garbage, and wastes from humans and animals can also be used as biomass to produce methane gas, which can be used directly as the fuel. Methane is an important part of natural gas, which is used extensively as a cooking gas and also for running a number of vehicles like cars and trucks. The methane gas obtained by this method is also called as the landfill gas or biogas.

The Fuels Obtained from Biomass
 
Besides using the biomass for producing heat, it can also be used to produce fuels. The fuels produced from the biomass are called as biofuels. The biofuels can be used independently to or in combination with the other fuels like gasoline and diesel. Some of the popular biofuels made from the biomass are ethanol, biodiesel and natural gas.
 
Ethanol is produced by fermentation of sugar which can be found in sugarcane, grains like corn, sorghum and wheat, and other sources like potato skins, rice, sugar beets and yard clippings. The biodiesel can be produced from vegetable oil and animal fat feedstock. In this age of escalating fuel prices, biodiesel is one of the most popular types of alternative fuel for the vehicles. Biodiesel is mixed with traditional diesel in certain proportions to power the vehicles. The biodiesel is a clean fuel and does not produce any pollution. The natural gas can be obtained from the biomass like cow dung, human wastes, and livestock wastes. Methane, which is important part of the natural gas, is produced from the biomass.

Benefits of Using the Biomass Energy
 
Here are some of the important benefits of biomass energy:
 
1) Biomass energy is obtained mainly from the plants, animals, human wastes and garbage which would have otherwise created dirty environment and lots of disposal problems. When converted to biomass energy most of the wastes get burnt completely or they get converted to useful manure. Thus using biomass energy helps keeping our surroundings clean.
 
2) Biomass is a renewable source of energy that would last as long as there is plant, animal, and human life on the earth.
 
3) Biomass helps producing indigenous fuels and helps reducing dependency for fuels on other countries. 
 
 
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 CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
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CCRES – SOLAR ENERGY

 

 

CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
 
  Solar Energy 
 
 
Sun has been producing energy in the form of radiations since billions of years without taking any rest. The energy obtained from radiations of the sun is called as solar energy. We know plants absorb energy from the sun by the process called photosynthesis. The humans beings and animals eat plants, thus directly or indirectly all the plants, animals and human beings are dependent on the sun. Human beings have learned to extract the energy from solar radiations and use it for various purposes.
 
Solar energy can be converted into heat and electricity. The British astronomer John Herschel is considered to be the first person in modern days to utilize solar energy. In the period of 1830s, on his expedition to Africa, he used solar energy to cook food. Since then there have been lots of developments in the field of solar energy.
 
The importance of solar energy has been understood since ages. Considering the fact that human life is crucially dependent on the energy emitted by sun, sun is considered to be the God in many religions. In Hindu mythology Sun God is considered to be the sources of energy and wisdom, which is always on the move to spread its energies and knowledge. The main deity in Egyptian mythology is sun god named Ra, who was also the first king. In Greek mythology, Helios is considered to be the sun god, who moves on the chariot throughout the world to illuminate it and spread the knowledge. Sun is also important part of many other mythologies and religions.
 
 

In which Places is Solar Energy most abundant?
 
 
Solar energy is the most promising energy with the potential for meeting all our future energy requirements. The main benefit of the solar energy is that it is available in all parts of the world. The quantity of solar energy is so huge that it is capable of providing many times the energy currently demanded throughout the world. Solar energy is being used for number of applications in countries like US, China, India, and many others.
 
The only problem with solar energy is that it is not available uniformly during all the hours of the day and all the days of the year. However, when supplemented with the other energies like thermal, and hydroelectric, solar energy can effectively meet our long-term requirements with little dependence on fossil fuels.
 
 

Applications of Solar Energy
 
 
Some of the common applications of solar energy are:

1) Solar water heaters: The solar water heaters comprise of the solar collectors that absorb solar energy which is use to heat water. The hot water can be used for various domestic and industrial purposes, in bathrooms, homes and swimming pools.

2) Producing heating effect: The solar energy can also be used for heating of the rooms during winter seasons.

3) Cooking food: Cooking food is one of earliest applications of the solar energy. Solar cookers are available in different shapes and sizes with different types of solar collectors. The most commonly used type of solar cooker consists of box inside which the raw food to be cooked it kept. At the top there is a reflective mirror on which the solar rays are directed. The solar rays get reflected on the utensil in which the food is kept. Due to concentrated solar rays, the food gets heated and cooked.

4) Photovoltaic (PV) cells: PV cells are the devices that convert solar energy directly into electricity, which can be used for running of number of appliances like calculators, mobiles, lanterns, street lights etc. The electricity generated from the PV cells can be stored in battery, which can be utilized for lighting the home and also running the cars. In the solar power plants large numbers of solar panels are spread over big area spread across several acres. The solar energy collected by the panels is transmitted to the PV cells that convert it into electricity.

5) Solar thermal power plants: The working of solar power plants is similar to thermal power plants. In these plants instead of coal, solar energy is used to convert water into steam, which drives the turbines that eventually produce electricity. At the end of 2008 there were nine solar thermal power plants operating in US.
 
 

Benefits and Limitations of Solar Energy
 
 
There are number of benefits of solar energy including:

1) Solar energy is available abundantly and free of cost in many parts of the world.

2) Solar energy is considered to be clean and green energy since it does not produce any environmental pollution like carbon dioxide and greenhouse gases.

3) The equipment required to collect solar energy can be kept at suitable locations in the campus of the building without affecting its aesthetics or surrounding atmosphere.
 
 
 
However, there are some limitations to solar power most notably:

1) The solar energy is not available in uniform quantity. The intensity of solar radiations changes during different hours of day and various days of the year, different climatic conditions and at different locations of the place. At times large amount of energy may be available, but at other times the available energy may be insufficient to meet the demands.

2) Large solar collectors are required to collect the solar energy of required quantity, which occupy large space inside the building.
 
 
CCRES 
special thanks to   
Escapeartist, Inc
 
 CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
Posted in ALTERNATIVE, ALTERNATIVE ENERGY, CCRES, CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES, GREEN ENERGY, HCOIE, HRVATSKI CENTAR OBNOVLJIVIH IZVORA ENERGIJE, PASSIVE ENERGY, RENEWABLE ENERGY, RENEWABLE ENERGY CENTER SOLAR SERDAR, RENEWABLES JAPAN STATUS REPORT, SOLAR SERDAR | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

CCRES – SOURCES OF ALTERNATIVE ENERGY

 
 
 
CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
 
 Sources of Alternative Energy
 
Alternative energy or renewable energy is important for creating clean energy future not only for the individual nations but the whole world. It offers excellent alternatives to the fossil fuels to reduce the emissions of carbon dioxide and greenhouse gases. The sources of the alternative energy are inexhaustible and one can rely on them for long-term basis Here are some important sources of alternative energy:
 
 
 
1) Solar energy:
 
The energy obtained from the radiations of the sun is called as solar energy. Sun is the massive source of energy releasing radiations since billions of years non-stop. The radiations emitted by sun are vital for all the plant, animal and human lives on the earth. At present solar energy is being tapped successfully for a number of applications.

Solar cooker is small box type equipment used for cooking of the food without requiring any additional fuel. There are number of variations of solar cooker with different efficiencies and different sizes. Solar water heaters are used extensively for heating water that can be used for bathing, domestic use and industrial purposes. It saves lots of electricity costs and the burning of other fuels like wood, coal, LPG etc. Another very important application of the solar energy is the photovoltaic or PV cells. The PV cells comprise of the solar panels that absorb solar energy and store them in the batteries. The energy from the batteries can be used for different domestic as well industrial applications
 
 
Besides these, there are number of other applications of solar energy like solar street lights, solar lanterns, calculators, mobiles etc. Solar energy is available abundantly in countries like India, China, US and others. It is considered to be one of the most resourceful sources of energy for future.
 
 

2) Wind energy:
 
The energy obtained from naturally flowing wind in the atmosphere is called as wind energy. Wind energy is available extensively in specific geographical locations without any costs. The wind in motion carries kinetic energy and it can be converted into mechanical and electrical energy. Presently wind energy is widely used for the generation of electricity.
 
 
To tap the energy from wind turbines are used. The wind turbine comprises of large blades looking like the fan. The blades are attached to the hub, which in turn is mounted on a shaft When the moving wind comes in contact with the blades it causes the rotation of the blades, which in turn causes the rotation of the shaft at low speeds. This shaft is connected to the gear box and causes slow rotation of the input gears and fast rotation of output gears and shaft. The output shaft rotates in an alternator that produces electricity. To get sufficient amount of grid power, large number of wind turbines are required at a specific location, which is called as wind farm or wind power plant.
 

3) Hydropower:
 
The power obtained from the flow of water is called as hydraulic power or hydro power or water power. The alternative energy from water can be obtained in a number of ways, the most popular being the hydroelectric power plants. In these power plants huge dams are built across the flow of the river. The water is stored in the dam at large heights and it carries potential energy. When the water flows down the potential energy is converted into kinetic energy. The flowing water comes in contacts with the large water turbines and makes them rotate in the transformer that produces electricity. Hydroelectric power plants are important source of electricity in a number of countries including US, China, India, Russia, and others.
 
Alternative energy obtained from the tides of the oceans is called as tidal energy. The waves in the waters of the oceans can also be utilized to produce electricity.
 

4) Geothermal Energy:
 
The heat energy obtained from the deep layers of earth is called as geothermal energy. The heat is produced continuously in the deep layers of earth, which can be utilized for various purposes like heating water, operating the heat pumps, producing electricity etc. Large amount of heat is generated in the core of earth and it gets conducted through the surrounding layers of rock. It comes to the surface of the earth in various forms like lava, hot springs etc, while other heat is stored below the surface of the earth. This heat is the geothermal energy and is available in unlimited quantity.
 

5) Biomass energy:
 
Biomass is the organic material obtained from the plants. The plants absorb energy from the sun by the process of photosynthesis so the energy is store in them. The biomass is the garbage leftover by the plants in the form of fallen leaves, broken branches, dead trees, wood chips, wasted crops etc. A number of other garbage and waste materials can be considered to be biomass. The energy obtained from the biomass is called as the biomass energy.
 
 
When the biomass is heated, the chemical energy within it is converted into heat energy, which can be used for heating water, producing steam, cooking food etc. Biomass can also be used to produce the methane gas, which can be used as the fuel. Rotten garbage and human waste can also be considered as biomass that can be used to produce methane, which is called as landfill gas or biogas. Biomass can also be converted biodiesel, which can be mixed with the traditional diesel fuel to run the vehicles.
 
 
CCRES 
special thanks to   
Escapeartist, Inc
 
 CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES 
(CCRES)
Posted in ALTERNATIVE, ALTERNATIVE ENERGY, CCRES, CROATIAN CENTER of RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES, GREEN ENERGY, HCOIE, HRVATSKI CENTAR OBNOVLJIVIH IZVORA ENERGIJE, PASSIVE ENERGY, RENEWABLE ENERGY, RENEWABLE ENERGY CENTER SOLAR SERDAR, RENEWABLES JAPAN STATUS REPORT, SOLAR SERDAR | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment