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Sensitivity analysis for photovoltaic water pumping systems: Energetic and economic studies
Año del Documento
Energy conversion and management 135, 402-415
In agricultural remote areas where electrical energy is required to supply water pumping plants, photovoltaic modules are considered a good option to generate electricity. The reliability of autonomous Photovoltaic water pumping plants depends essentially on the system components size, which should meet the criteria related to the plant autonomy and the water volume required for irrigation. In this context, this research paper proposes an approach to size the elements of an autonomous photovoltaic system equipped with an energy storage device (a battery bank), and which is used to supply a waterpumping plant with electricity. The proposed approach determines the optimal surface of the photovoltaic modules, the optimal capacity of the battery bank and the volume of the water storage tank. The optimization approach takes into account the monthly average solar radiation, the fulfillment of the water needed for the crops’ irrigation and the number of the days of autonomy. Measured climatic data of 10 ha situated in Northern Tunisia and planted with tomato are used in the optimization process, which is conducted during the tomato vegetative cycle (from March to July). The optimal results achieved for this farm are 101.5 m2 of photovoltaic modules’ surface, 1680 A h/12 V of the battery bank and 1800 m3 of the volume of the water storage tank. Then, to verify the reliability of the proposed optimization approach, the results of the proposed sizing algorithm are compared with those of a commercial optimization tool named HOMER, which shows better results using the proposed approach. Finally, the economic reliability of the obtained size is studied and compared with systems that include a diesel generator, and a diesel generator- photovoltaic panels, respectively, using climatic and economic parameters in three countries: Tunisia, Spain and Jordan. The economic analysis for these water pumping systems showed that photovoltaic- batteries/Pump system is the optimum solution in the three countries. However, the initial cost of the system can be recuperated faster in Spain than in Tunisia and Jordan due to high prices of the diesel these two countries.
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