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Category Archives: RE Policy
Thermal Generation Efficiencies
Thermal generation relies on fossil fuels and renewable fuel sources like biomass, biogass, waste=to-energy and geothermal. The following section indicates thermal efficiency ranges for converting primary energy into electricity based on standard market and state-of-the-art equipment. The efficiency values reported do not include losses attributed to plant availability such as planned maintenance, unforced outages, and grid curtailments.
This next several pages present knowledge on power generation efficiency. The pages provide:
- Basic engineering definitions of electrical production efficiency,
- Fuel energy content for a wide variety of fuels, and
- Power production efficiencies by technology
The most current power production efficiencies are provided based on state-of-the-art equipment that is most recently available on the market or expected to be available within 18 months. Efficiency tables can be found using the links below:
Introduction to Renewable Generation
Renewable generation includes sources of energy that renew themselves constantly through natural processes and will never run out during normal human time-scales. Renewable energies come from three primary sources: the Sun, heat from the inner Earth, and tidal power. The Sun, in turn fuels the wind and, indirectly, most biomass resources.
A fuel cell converts the chemical energy from a fuel into electricity, heat and water through a chemical reaction with oxygen. Hydrogen is the most common fuel and is produced from the steam methane reforming of natural gas, but for greater efficiency hydrocarbons can be used directly, be it natural gas, gasoline, or alcohols like methanol.
Since fuel cells rely on an electrochemical process and not combustion, emissions from fuel cells are significantly lower than emissions from even the cleanest fuel combustion processes.
The business case for renewable energy and CO2 reduction is changing as carbon tracking and court cases shift focus from carbon emitters to the ultimate producers of coal, oil and natural gas … to the “carbon majors.”
A 2013 study published in the journal Climatic Change cites 90 companies by name and responsible for 63% of human induced greenhouse gas emissions since the beginning of the industrial revolution. National industrial plans (NIPs) and energy companies from the US and Europe dominate the list with familiar names like ChevronTexaco, ExxonMobil, Saudi Aramco, British Coal, and RWE.
Bloomberg has released May 2014 PV Spot Prices with current module costs (COGS), margins and sales prices. This data is extended to profile the levelized cost of energy (LCOE) for solar PV technology, and is combined with new solar efficiency data to define the LCOE roadmap for solar energy in Qatar going forward.
Renewable energy in Kuwait is well supported. The Kuwait Petroleum Company and the Ministry of Water and Electricity sponsored a joint study by the Kuwait Institute of Scientific Research to determine the potential for renewable energy given an optimal generation mix. Study details have been presented publicly, revealing the following model inputs: wind and solar resource assessment data, RE technology costs short- and long-term, short-term hourly demand profiles, long-term power demand forecasts, power sector plant performance, and energy price forecasts.