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Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Techno-economic optimization of islanded microgrids considering intra-hour variability

Mathiesen P, Stadler M, Kleissl J, Pecenak Z. Techno-economic optimization of islanded microgrids considering intra-hour variability. Applied Energy. 2021.304:117777.

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The intra-hour intermittency of solar energy and demand introduce significant design challenges for microgrids. To avoid costly energy shortfalls and mitigate outage probability, islanded microgrids must be designed with sufficient distributed energy resources (DER) to meet demand and fulfill the energy and power balance. To avoid excessive runtime, current design tools typically only utilize hourly data. As such, the variable nature of solar and demand is often overlooked. Thus, DER designed based on hourly data may result in significant energy shortfalls when deployed in real-world conditions. This research introduces a new, fast method for optimizing DER investments and performing dispatch planning to consider intra-hour variability. A novel set of constraints which operate on intra-hour data are implemented in a mixed-integer-linear-program microgrid investment optimization. Variability is represented by the single worst-case intra-hour fluctuation. This allows for fast optimization times compared to other approaches tested. Applied to a residential microgrid case study with 5-minute intra-hour resolution, this new method is shown to maintain optimality within 2% and reduce runtime by 98.2% compared to full-scale-optimizations which consider every time-step explicitly. Applicable to a variety of technologies and demand types, this method provides a general framework for incorporating intra-hour variability into microgrid design.


Conference Papers | 2021

The robust exact differentiator toolbox revisited: Filtering and discretization features.

Andritsch B, Horn M, Koch S, Niederwieser H, Wetzlinger M, Reichhartinger M. The robust exact differentiator toolbox revisited: Filtering and discretization features. in 2021 IEEE International Conference on Mechatronics, ICM 2021. Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. 2021. 9385675 https://doi.org/10.1109/ICM46511.2021.9385675

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An extended version of a Simulink ® -block providing on-line differentiation algorithms based on discretized sliding-mode concepts is presented. Based on user-specified settings it computes estimates of the time-derivatives of the input signal up to order ten. Different discrete-time estimation algorithms as well as optional filtering properties can be selected. The paper includes an overview of the implemented algorithms, a detailed explanation of the developed Simulink ® -block and two examples. The first example illustrates the application of the toolbox in a numerical simulation environment whereas the second one shows results obtained via an electrical laboratory setup.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Ultra-low temperature water-gas shift reaction catalyzed by homogeneous Ru-complexes in a membrane reactor - membrane development and proof of concept

Logemann M, Wolf P, Loipersböck J, Schrade A, Wessling M, Haumann M. Ultra-low temperature water-gas shift reaction catalyzed by homogeneous Ru-complexes in a membrane reactor - membrane development and proof of concept. Catalysis Science and Technology. 2021.11(4):1558-1570. https://doi.org/10.1039/D0CY02111C

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A monolithic membrane reactor combining the supported ionic liquid-phase (SILP) catalyzed ultra-low temperature water–gas shift reaction (WGSR) with in situ product removal is presented. The SILP catalyst consists of the transition metal complex [Ru(CO)3Cl2]2 homogeneously dissolved in 1-butyl-2,3-dimethylimidazolium chloride [C4C1C1Im]Cl and supported on alumina pellets. These Ru-SILP pellets are deposited inside the channels of a silicon carbide monolith. The resulting monolithic catalyst is very active and stable in the WGSR in the temperature range between 120 and 160 °C, thereby making full use of the high equilibrium conversion at these conditions. A facilitated transport membrane was coated onto the smooth outside of the SiC monolith to allow preferential removal of CO2 compared to H2. The proof of this concept has been shown under industrially relevant conditions using a biogas feed. These results demonstrate, for the first time, the combination of homogeneous SILP catalyzed WGSR with enhanced in situ removal of one of the products (here: CO2) via facilitated transport membrane separation.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2021

Valorisation of starch wastewater by anaerobic fermentation

Drosg B, Neubauer M, Marzynski M, Meixner K. Valorisation of starch wastewater by anaerobic fermentation. Applies Sciences (Switzerland). 2021.11(21):10482.

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Starch production is mainly focused on feedstocks such as corn, wheat and potato in the EU, whereas cassava, rice, and other feedstocks are utilised worldwide. In starch production, a high amount of wastewater is generated, which accumulates from different process steps such as washing, steeping, starch refining, saccharification and derivatisation. Valorisation of these wastewaters can help to improve the environmental impact as well as the economics of starch production. Anaerobic fermentation is a promising approach, and this review gives an overview of the different utilisation concepts outlined in the literature and the state of the technology. Among bioenergy recovery processes, biogas technology is widely applied at the industrial scale, whereas biohydrogen production is used at the research stage. Starch wastewater can also be used for the production of bulk chemicals such as acetone, ethanol, butanol or lactic acids by anaerobic microbes.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

A multi-layer model of stratified thermal storage for MILP-based energy management systems

Muschick D, Zlabinger S, Moser A, Lichtenegger K, Gölles M. A multi-layer model of stratified thermal storage for MILP-based energy management systems. Applied Energy. 2022 May 15;315.118890. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apenergy.2022.118890

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Both the planning and operation of complex, multi-energy systems increasingly rely on optimization. This optimization requires the use of mathematical models of the system components. The model most often used to describe thermal storage, and especially in the common mixed-integer linear program (MILP) formulation, is a simple integrator model with a linear loss term. This simple model has multiple inherent drawbacks since it cannot be applied to represent the temperature distribution inside of the storage unit. In this article, we present a novel approach based on multiple layers of variable size but fixed temperature. The model is still linear, but can be used to describe the most relevant physical phenomena: heat losses, axial heat transport, and, at least qualitatively, axial heat conduction. As an additional benefit, this model makes it possible to clearly distinguish between heat available at different temperatures and thus suitable for different applications, e.g., space heating or domestic hot water. This comes at the cost of additional binary decision variables used to model the resulting hybrid linear dynamics, requiring the use of state-of-the-art MILP solvers to solve the resulting optimization problems. The advantages of the more detailed model are demonstrated by validating it against a standard model based on partial differential equations and by showing more realistic results for a simple energy optimization problem.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

An unknown input observer for linear time-invariant multivariable systems based on a new observability canonical form

Niederwieser H, Seeber R, Reichhartinger M. An unknown input observer for linear time-invariant multivariable systems based on a new observability canonical form. 2022

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This paper presents a new observer design approach for linear time invariant multivariable systems subject to unknown inputs. The design is based on a transformation to the so-called special coordinate basis. This form reveals important system properties like invertability or the finite and infinite zero structure. Depending on the system's strong observability properties, the special coordinate basis allows for a straightforward unknown input observer design utilizing linear or nonlinear observers design techniques. The chosen observer design technique does not only depend on the system properties, but also on the desired convergence behavior of the observer. Hence, the proposed design procedure can be seen as a unifying framework for unknown input observer design.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

Ash transformation during single-pellet gasification of sewage sludge and mixtures with agricultural residues with a focus on phosphorus

Hannl TK, Häggström G, Hedayati A, Skoglund N, Kuba M, Marcus Öhman. Ash transformation during single-pellet gasification of sewage sludge and mixtures with agricultural residues with a focus on phosphorus. Fuel Processing Technology. March 2022.227:107102.

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The recovery of phosphorus (P) from sewage sludge ashes has been the focus of recent research due to the initiatives for the use of biogenic resources and resource recovery. This study investigates the ash transformation chemistry of P in sewage sludge ash during the co-gasification with the K-Si- and K-rich agricultural residues wheat straw and sunflower husks, respectively, at temperatures relevant for fluidized bed technology, namely 800 °C and 950 °C. The residual ash was analyzed by ICP­AES, SEM/EDS, and XRD, and the results were compared to results of thermochemical equilibrium calculations. More than 90% of P and K in the fuels were retained in the residual ash fraction, and significant interaction phenomena occurred between the P-rich sewage sludge and the K-rich ash fractions. Around 45–65% of P was incorporated in crystalline K-bearing phosphates, i.e., K-whitlockite and CaKPO4, in the residual ashes with 85–90 wt% agricultural residue in the fuel mixture. In residual ashes of sewage sludge and mixtures with 60–70 wt% agricultural residue, P was mainly found in Ca(Mg,Fe)-whitlockites and AlPO4. Up to about 40% of P was in amorphous or unidentified phases. The results show that gasification provides a potential for the formation of K-bearing phosphates similar to combustion processes.


Conference contributions | 2022

Automatic Thermal Model Identification and Distributed Optimisation for Load Shifting in City Quarters

Moser A, Kaisermayer V, Muschick D, Zemann C, Gölles M, Hofer A, Brandl D, Heimrath R, Mach T, Tugores C R, Ramschak, T. Automatic Thermal Model Identification and Distributed Optimisation for Load Shifting in City Quarters. 2nd International Sustainable Energy Conference: ISEC 2022. Graz, 07/04/2022. Oral presentation.

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Modern buildings with floor heating or thermally activated building structures (TABS) offer a significant potential for shifting the thermal load and thus reduce peak demand for heating or cooling. This potential can be realized with the help of model predictive control (MPC) methods, provided that sufficiently descriptive mathematical models describing the thermal characteristics of the individual thermal zones exist. Creating these by hand or from more detailed simulation models is infeasible for large numbers of zones; instead, they must be identified automatically based on measurement data. We present an approach using only open source tools based on the programming language Julia that allows to robustly identify simple thermal models for heating and cooling usable in MPC optimization. The resulting models are used in a distributed optimization scheme that co-ordinates the individual zones and buildings of a city quarter in order to best support an energy hub.


Other Publications | 2022

Energiegemeinschaften im Tourismussektor

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Der Leitfaden „Energiegemeinschaften im Tourismus“ zeigt, welche Möglichkeiten Energiegemeinschaften für Tourismusbetriebe, ihre Beschäftigten und Menschen, die in Tourismusregionen leben, bieten können und wie eine Energiegemeinschaft ins Leben gerufen werden
kann.


Conference contributions | 2022

FAULT DETECTIVE: FAULT DETECTION FOR SOLAR THERMAL SYSTEMS

Feierl L, Bolognesi T, Unterberger V, Geatani M, Gerardts B. FAULT DETECTIVE: FAULT DETECTION FOR SOLAR THERMAL SYSTEMS. ISEC 2022. 05 - 07. April 2022, Graz. Poster presentation.

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Conference contributions | 2022

IEA SHC Task 68: Efficient Solar District Heating Systems

Unterberger V, Berberich M, Putz S, Byström J, Gölles M. IEA SHC Task 68: Efficient Solar District Heating Systems. ISEC 2022. 5 - 07. April 2022, Graz. Poster presentation.

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Technical Reports | 2022

PHB Producing Cyanobacteria Found in the Neighborhood— Their Isolation, Purification and Performance Testing

Meixner K, Daffert C, Bauer L, Drosg B, Fritz I. PHB Producing Cyanobacteria Found in the Neighborhood— Their Isolation, Purification and Performance Testing. 2022.9:178

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Cyanobacteria are a large group of prokaryotic microalgae that are able to grow photo-autotrophically by utilizing sunlight and by assimilating carbon dioxide to build new biomass. One of the most interesting among many cyanobacteria cell components is the storage biopolymer polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB), a member of the group of polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA). Cyanobacteria occur in almost all habitats, ranging from freshwater to saltwater, freely drifting or adhered to solid surfaces or growing in the porewater of soil, they appear in meltwater of glaciers as well as in hot springs and can handle even high salinities and nutrient imbalances. The broad range of habitat conditions makes them interesting for biotechnological production in facilities located in such climate zones with the expectation of using the best adapted organisms in low-tech bioreactors instead of using “universal” strains, which require high technical effort to adapt the production conditions to the organism‘s need. These were the prerequisites for why and how we searched for locally adapted cyanobacteria in different habitats. Our manuscript provides insight to the sites we sampled, how we isolated and enriched, identified (morphology, 16S rDNA), tested (growth, PHB accumulation) and purified (physical and biochemical purification methods) promising PHB-producing cyanobacteria that can be used as robust production strains. Finally, we provide a guideline about how we managed to find potential production strains and prepared others for basic metabolism studies.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

Real coupling of solid oxide fuel cells with a biomass steam gasifier: Operating boundaries considering performance, tar and carbon deposition analyses

Pongratz G, Subotić V, von Berg L, Schroettner H, Hochenauer C, Martini S, Hauck M, Steinruecken B, Skrzypkiewicz M, Kupecki J, Scharler R, Anca-Couce A. Real coupling of solid oxide fuel cells with a biomass steam gasifier: Operating boundaries considering performance, tar and carbon deposition analyses. Fuel. 15 May 2022.316:123310.

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Solid oxide fuel cells are a promising alternative to gas engines for combined heat and power production based on biomass gasification. The technical complexity of realizing gasifier – fuel cell couplings has limited the number of experiments conducted in the past. However, results from such experiments are of high importance for the evaluation of tar thresholds and operating conditions ensuring a stable operation of fuel cells. For the first time, it was possible to demonstrate for dozens of hours the operation of solid oxide fuel cells with real product gas from steam gasification with a steam-to-carbon ratio of 2 and a typical tar content for fluidized bed gasification. Four coupling experiments with industrial-relevant cell designs were conducted, demonstrating a stable operation for 30 h without structural degradation of the anodes for cells with nickel/ceria- and nickel/zirconia-based anodes at 800°C and 850°C, if heavy tars were partially removed (2.8–3.7 g·Nm−3 gravimetric tars). Raw gas operation (4.6–4.8 g·Nm−3 gravimetric tars) led to metal dusting effects on nickel contact meshes and nickel/zirconia-based anodes, whereas nickel/ceria-based anodes were less affected. Carbon deposited on the alumina support in all experiments whereby a change from pyrolytic to graphitic structure could be observed when increasing the temperature from 800°C to 850°C, thus significantly reducing the risk for blockages in the flow channels. Moreover, high tar and benzene conversion rates were observed. Concluding, operating temperatures of 850°C and the removal only of heavy tars can enable stable long-term operation with a tar-laden steam gasifier product gas, even without increasing the steam-to-carbon ratio to values exceeding two.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

Self-Heating of Biochar during Postproduction Storage by O2 Chemisorption at Low Temperatures

Phounglamcheik A, Johnson N, Kienzl N, Strasser C, Umeki K. Self-Heating of Biochar during Postproduction Storage by O2 Chemisorption at Low Temperatures. Energies. 2022.15:380

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Biochar is attracting attention as an alternative carbon/fuel source to coal in the process industry and energy sector. However, it is prone to self-heating and often leads to spontaneous ignition and thermal runaway during storage, resulting in production loss and health risks. This study investigates biochar self-heating upon its contact with O2 at low temperatures, i.e., 50–300 °C. First, kinetic parameters of O2 adsorption and CO2 release were measured in a thermogravimetric analyzer using biochar produced from a pilot-scale pyrolysis process. Then, specific heat capacity and heat of reactions were measured in a differential scanning calorimeter. Finally, a one-dimensional transient model was developed to simulate self-heating in containers and gain insight into the influences of major parameters. The model showed a good agreement with experimental measurement in a closed metal container. It was observed that char temperature slowly increased from the initial temperature due to heat released during O2 adsorption. Thermal runaway, i.e., self-ignition, was observed in some cases even at the initial biochar temperature of ca. 200 °C. However, if O2 is not permeable through the container materials, the temperature starts decreasing after the consumption of O2 in the container. The simulation model was also applied to examine important factors related to self-heating. The results suggested that self-heating can be somewhat mitigated by decreasing the void fraction, reducing storage volume, and lowering the initial char temperature. This study demonstrated a robust way to estimate the cooling demands required in the biochar production process.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

Smart control of interconnected district heating networks on the example of “100% Renewable District Heating Leibnitz”

Kaisermayer V, Binder J, Muschick D, Beck G, Rosegger W, Horn M, Gölles M, Kelz J, Leusbrock I. Smart control of interconnected district heating networks on the example of “100% Renewable District Heating Leibnitz”. Smart Energy. 2022 Apr 7. 100069. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.segy.2022.100069

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District heating (DH) networks have the potential for intelligent integration and combination of renewable energy sources, waste heat, thermal energy storage, heat consumers, and coupling with other sectors. As cities and municipalities grow, so do the corresponding networks. This growth of district heating networks introduces the possibility of interconnecting them with neighbouring networks. Interconnecting formerly separated DH networks can result in many advantages concerning flexibility, overall efficiency, the share of renewable sources, and security of supply. Apart from the problem of hydraulically connecting the networks, the main challenge of interconnected DH systems is the coordination of multiple feed-in points. It can be faced with control concepts for the overall DH system which define optimal operation strategies. This paper presents two control approaches for interconnected DH networks that optimize the supply as well as the demand side to reduce CO2 emissions. On the supply side, an optimization-based energy management system defines operation strategies based on demand forecasts. On the demand side, the operation of consumer substations is influenced in favour of the supply using demand side management. The proposed approaches were tested both in simulation and in a real implementation on the DH network of Leibnitz, Austria. First results show a promising reduction of CO2 emissions by 35% and a fuel cost reduction of 7% due to better utilization of the production capacities of the overall DH system.


Other Presentations | 2022

Solar goes Digital: Wie Solarwärme selbstlernende Algorithmen nutzt (Austria Solar Webinar 26)

Unterberger V. Solar goes Digital: Wie Solarwärme selbstlernende Algorithmen nutzt (Austria Solar Webinar 26). Online am 11.05.2022.

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Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

Solid oxide fuel cell operation with biomass gasification product gases: Performance- and carbon deposition risk evaluation via a CFD modelling approach

Pongratz G, Subotić V, Hochenauer C, Scharler R, Anca-Couce A. Solid oxide fuel cell operation with biomass gasification product gases: Performance- and carbon deposition risk evaluation via a CFD modelling approach. 1 April 2022. 244.

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Solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) models used in the past for biomass-to-power plant simulations are limited in their predictability of the carbon deposition risk. In this work, industrial-relevant cell designs were modeled in 2D-CFD considering detailed reaction kinetics which allowed more accurate performance simulations and carbon deposition risk assessments. Via a parametric study, the influence of varying cell operating conditions on the cell performance and carbon deposition risk was quantified when utilizing product gases from steam- and air gasification with varying steam addition. Considering the results from this parameter study and carbon deposition risk assessment, recommendations for promising gasifier-SOFC configurations and cell operating points for stable long-term operation are presented. For smaller-scale biomass-to-power systems, the utilization of product gas from air gasification in anode supported cells with Ni/zirconia-based anode can be recommended, with only moderate steam dilution of the product gas at 750°C cell operating temperature. For larger scales, steam gasification might be meaningful, offering a generally higher electrical efficiency and power output in fuel cells than air gasification. However, a higher risk for carbon deposition could be determined in comparison to air gasification. Hence, a cell temperature of 850°C besides the use of cells with Ni/ceria-based anodes is recommended.


Conference contributions | 2022

Success Factors and Barriers for Integrated District Heating Networks

Muschick D, Cronbach D, Ianakiev A, Kallert A, Schmidt R-R, Sorknaes P et al. Success Factors and Barriers for Integrated District Heating Networks. 2022. Postersitzung präsentiert bei 2nd International Sustainable Energy Conference , Graz, Österreich.

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Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

The effect of the presence of water on sulfur removal capacity during H2S removal from syngas using ZnO adsorbent

Dogan C, Martini S, Rets hitzegger S, Cetin B. The effect of the presence of water on sulfur removal capacity during H2S removal from syngas using ZnO adsorbent. Environmental Technology. 15 May 2022.

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Compared to extensive studies on affecting parameters in sulfur removal with ZnO adsorbents from coal gasification syngas, similar studies conducted for biomass gasification syngas (BGS) are quite rare. Thus, considering the BGSs with high water content, this study was performed to investigate the effect of H2O presence in syngas on sulfur removal capacity (SRC) of ZnO adsorbents. Initially, the effect of gas composition and temperature on SRC in binary gas mixture was investigated. While H2O decreased the SRC, as expected, the highest reduction in the capacity occurred in the CO–H2S gas mixture due to observed COS formation. Second, the SRCs and resulting COS formation were compared for synthetic syngas mixtures having different water contents and for different amounts of adsorbents. Finally, the separate and combined effects of temperature and H2O on SRC and COS formation in synthetic syngas were investigated by comparing SRCs of typical syngas under wet and dry conditions. The results showed that increasing the amount of adsorbent and temperature results in higher SRC due to a reduction in COS formation through the reactions of COS with H2 and H2O. This indicates that it is critical to control the residence time of syngas and temperature to reduce COS formation during ZnO adsorption.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

Trickle-Bed Bioreactors for Acetogenic H2/CO2 Conversion

Steger F, Ergal I, Daubek A, Loibl N, Rachbauer L, Fuchs W, Rittmann SKMR, Bochmann G. Trickle-Bed Bioreactors for Acetogenic H2/CO2 Conversion. Frontiers in Energy Research. 8 Apirl 2022.10;842284

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Acetic acid is an essential industrial building block and can be produced by acetogenic bacteria from molecular hydrogen (H2) and carbon dioxide (CO2). When gasses are supplied as substrates, bioreactor design plays an important role for their availability. Trickle-bed bioreactors (TBs) have an enhanced gas-to-liquid mass transfer and cells remain in the system by forming a biofilm on the carriers. So far, TBs have been investigated extensively for bio-methanation processes, whereas studies for their use in acetic acid production are rare. In this study, we evaluated the reproducibility of two parallel TBs for acetic acid production from H2:CO2 (= 70:30) by a mixed culture with a gas flow rate of 3.8 mL min−1 and a medium flow rate of 10 mL min−1. Additionally, the effect of glucose addition during the starting phase on the resulting products and microbial composition was investigated by setting up a third TB2. Partial medium exchanges to decrease the internal acetic acid concentration (AAC) combined with recycling of withdrawn cells had a positive impact on acetic acid production rates with maxima of around 1 g L−1 d−1 even at high AACs of 19–25 g L−1. Initial glucose addition resulted in the accumulation of unwanted butyric acid up to concentrations of 2.60 ± 0.64 g L−1. The maximum AAC of 40.84 g L−1 was obtained without initial glucose addition. The main families identified in the acetogenic TBs were Peptococcaceae, Ruminococcaceae, Planococcaceae, Enterobacteriaceae, Clostridiaceae, Lachnospiraceae, Dysgonomonadaceae and Tannerellaceae. We conclude that a TB is a viable solution for conversion of H2/CO2 to acetate using an anaerobic enrichment culture.


Peer Reviewed Scientific Journals | 2022

Unknown input observer design for linear time-invariant multivariable systems based on a new observer normal form

Niederwieser H, Tranninger M, Seeber R, Reichhartinger M. Unknown input observer design for linear time-invariant multivariable systems based on a new observer normal form. International Journal of Systems Science. 2022 Apr 6. https://doi.org/10.1080/00207721.2022.2046201

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