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Directly Coupled Photovoltaic-Electrolyzer System Optimization Using a Novel ICA Methodology

[+] Author Affiliations
Farid Sayedin, Azadeh Maroufmashat, Sourena Sattari

Sharif University of Technology, Tehran, Iran

Paper No. IMECE2014-39762, pp. V06BT07A039; 6 pages
doi:10.1115/IMECE2014-39762
From:
  • ASME 2014 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 6B: Energy
  • Montreal, Quebec, Canada, November 14–20, 2014
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4952-1
  • Copyright © 2014 by ASME

abstract

Hydrogen is considered to be the fuel of the future. It is a cleaner alternative to the fossil fuels we consume every day. Of all the different hydrogen production pathways that exist, producing the gas by utilizing the power generated by renewable energy sources has been a topic of interest for many researchers across the world. The following work focuses on minimizing the energy loss by optimizing the size and the operating conditions of an electrolyzer directly connected to a photovoltaic (PV) module at different irradiance. The hydrogen, in the proposed system, is produced using a proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolyzer. A nonlinear method is considered, because of the complexity of the system and the variation in maximum power points (MPP) of the PV module throughout the year. A generic model has been also developed to determine the performance of photovoltaic-electrolyzer (PV/EL) system. Additionally, a whole year weather data set is employed to estimate annual electricity generation, I–V curves and MPPs of the PV module.

This work also proposes a novel optimization algorithm based on the imperialist competitive algorithm (ICA) to optimize the PV/EL system. By this approach, the optimal size and operating condition of an electrolyzer directly connected to a PV module is determined. The results demonstrate that for the given location and the PV system utilized in the study, the energy transfer efficiency of PV/EL system can reach up to 98.51%. Furthermore, it is also found that ICA algorithm quickly converges to a good solution, and by this method, deriving optimal parameters for each selected system can be possible.

Copyright © 2014 by ASME

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