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Investigation of Different Load Characteristics, Component Dimensioning, and System Scaling for the Optimized Design of a Hybrid Hydrogen-Based PV Energy System


The realization of a carbon-neutral civilization, which has been set as a goal for the coming decades, goes directly hand-in-hand with the need for an energy system based on renewable energies (REs). Due to the strong weather-related, daily, and seasonal fluctuations in supply of REs, suitable energy storage devices must be included for such energy systems. For this purpose, an energy system model featuring hybrid energy storage consisting of a hydrogen unit (for long-term storage) and a lithium-ion storage device (for short-term storage) was developed. With a proper design, such a system can ensure a year-round energy supply by using electricity generated by photovoltaics (PVs). In the energy system that was investigated, hydrogen (H2) was produced by using an electrolyser (ELY) with a PV surplus during the summer months and then stored in an H2 tank. During the winter, due to the lack of PV power, the H2 is converted back into electricity and heat by a fuel cell (FC). While the components of such a system are expensive, a resource- and cost-efficient layout is important. For this purpose, a Matlab/Simulink model that enabled an energy balance analysis and a component lifetime forecast was developed. With this model, the results of extensive parameter studies allowed an optimized system layout to be created for specific applications. The parameter studies covered different focal points. Several ELY and FC layouts, different load characteristics, different system scales, different weather conditions, and different load levels—especially in winter with variations in heating demand—were investigated.

Related subjects: Applications & Pathways
Countries: Germany

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