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Textbook

Renewable Energy and Climate Change

ISBN: 978-0-470-74707-0
320 pages
April 2010, ©2009, Wiley-IEEE Press
Renewable Energy and Climate Change (0470747072) cover image
This dazzling introductory textbook encompasses the full range of today's important renewable energy technologies.

Solar thermal, photovoltaic, wind, hydro, biomass and geothermal energy receive balanced treatment with one exciting and informative chapter devoted to each. As well as a complete overview of these state-of-the-art technologies, the chapters provide:

  • clear analysis on their development potentials;
  • an evaluation of the economic aspects involved;
  • concrete guidance for practical implementation; how to reduce your own energy waste.

If we do not act now to stop climate change, the consequences will be catastrophic. The current world situation is demonstrated here with the aid of full-colour figures and photographs, data diagrams and simple calculations and results. A multiplicity of impressive examples from countries across the globe show international ‘alternative’ energy in action.

With its easy-to-read approach, this is an essential textbook for students on renewable energy courses, also environment and sustainability courses. Planners, operators, financers and consultants will find this an excellent manual for planning and realizing climate protection. Furthermore, this book makes great background reading for energy workers, designers, politicians and journalists, and anyone who is interested in the topic of climate change.

Looking for further study? Visit the complimentary website; it hosts many useful related internet sites: www.wiley.com/go/quaschning_renewable

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Preface xi

1 Our Hunger for Energy 1

1.1 Energy Supply – Yesterday and Today 2

1.1.1 From the French Revolution to the Early 20th Century 2

1.1.2 The Era of Black Gold 4

1.1.3 Natural Gas – the Newest Fossil Energy Source 7

1.1.4 Nuclear Power – Split Energy 9

1.1.5 The Century of Fossil Energy 12

1.2 Energy Needs – Who Needs What, Where and How Much? 13

1.3 ‘Anyway’ Energy 16

1.4 Energy Supplies – Wealth Forever 19

1.5 The End of Fission 21

1.6 Oil Prices Today – Politics, Supply and Demand 22

2 The Climate Before the Collapse? 24

2.1 It Is Getting Warm – Climate Changes Today 24

2.1.1 The Ice is Slowly Melting 24

2.1.2 Natural Catastrophes Occur More Frequently 26

2.2 The Guilty Parties – Causes of Climate Change 29

2.2.1 The Greenhouse Effect 29

2.2.2 The Prime Suspect: Carbon Dioxide 30

2.2.3 Other Culprits 34

2.3 Outlook and Recommendations – What Lies Ahead? 37

2.3.1 Will It be Bitterly Cold in Europe? 39

2.3.2 Recommendations for Effective Climate Protection 42

2.4 Diffi cult Birth – Politics and Climate Change 42

2.4.1 German Climate Policy 42

2.4.2 International Climate Policy 44

2.5 Self-Help Climate Protection 46

3 From Wasting Energy to Saving Energy and Reducing Carbon Dioxide 47

3.1 Less Effi cient – Energy Use and Waste Today 47

3.2 Personal Energy Needs – Easily Saved at Home 50

3.2.1 Domestic Electricity – Money Wasted 50

3.2.2 Heat – Surviving the Winter with Almost No Heating 54

3.2.3 Transport – Getting Somewhere Using Less Energy 58

3.3 Industry and Co – Everyone Else is to Blame 61

3.4 The Personal Carbon Dioxide Record 62

3.4.1 Emissions Caused Directly by One’s Own Activities 62

3.4.2 Indirectly Caused Emissions 63

3.4.3 Total Emissions 65

3.5 The Sale of Ecological Indulgences 67

4 Carbon-Free Energy – Vision or Utopia? 70

4.1 Options for Carbon-Free Energy Supply 70

4.1.1 Effi cient Power Plants – More Power with Less Carbon Dioxide 70

4.1.2 Carbon Dioxide Sequestering – Away with Carbon Dioxide 72

4.1.3 Nuclear Energy – Squeaky Clean 74

4.1.4 Combined Heat and Power – Using Fuel Twice 75

4.1.5 Saving Energy – Achieving More with Less 76

4.2 Renewable Energy Sources – No End to What is Available 77

4.3 Options for Protecting the Climate 79

4.3.1 Down with Primary Energy Needs 79

4.3.2 Electricity Generation Totally Without Nuclear and Fossil Power Plants 81

4.3.3 Insulation and Renewable Energies to Provide Heat 82

4.3.4 Increasing Effi ciency and New Concepts for Traffic 83

4.4 Reliable Supply Using Renewable Energies 84

5 Photovoltaics – Energy from Sand 87

5.1 Structure and Function 88

5.1.1 Electrons, Holes and Space-Charge Regions 88

5.1.2 Effi ciency, Characteristics and MPP 90

5.2 Production of Solar Cells – from Sand to Cell 92

5.2.1 Silicon Solar Cells – Electricity from Sand 92

5.2.2 From Cell to Module 94

5.2.3 Thin Film Solar Cells 95

5.3 Photovoltaic Systems – Networks and Islands 96

5.3.1 Sun Islands 96

5.3.2 Sun in the Grid 99

5.4 Planning and Design 103

5.4.1 Planned on the Grid 103

5.4.2 Planned Islands 107

5.5 Economics 109

5.5.1 What Does It Cost? 109

5.5.2 Incentive Schemes 111

5.6 Ecology 112

5.7 Photovoltaic Markets 113

5.8 Outlook and Development Potential 114

6 Solar Thermal Systems – Year-Round Heating from the Sun 116

6.1 Structure and Functionality 118

6.2 Solar Collectors – Collecting the Sun 120

6.2.1 Swimming Pool Absorbers 120

6.2.2 Flat-Plate Collectors 121

6.2.3 Air-Based Collectors 122

6.2.4 Vacuum-Tube Collectors 123

6.3 Solar Thermal Systems 125

6.3.1 Hot Water from the Sun 125

6.3.2 Heating with the Sun 128

6.3.3 Solar Communities 130

6.3.4 Cooling with the Sun 130

6.3.5 Swimming with the Sun 131

6.3.6 Cooking with the Sun 133

6.4 Planning and Design 133

6.4.1 Solar Thermal Heating of Domestic Hot Water 134

6.4.2 Solar Thermal Heating as Support Heating 136

6.5 Economics 138

6.6 Ecology 139

6.7 Solar Thermal Markets 140

6.8 Outlook and Development Potential 142

7 Solar Power Plants – Even More Energy from the Sun 144

7.1 Concentration on the Sun 145

7.2 Solar Power Plants 147

7.2.1 Parabolic Trough Power Plants 147

7.2.2 Solar Tower Power Plants 150

7.2.3 Dish-Stirling Power Plants 153

7.2.4 Solar Chimney Power Plants 153

7.2.5 Concentrating Photovoltaic Power Plants 155

7.2.6 Solar Chemistry 155

7.3 Planning and Design 156

7.3.1 Concentrating Solar Thermal Power Plants 157

7.3.2 Solar Chimney Power Plants 158

7.3.3 Concentrating Photovoltaic Power Plants 158

7.4 Economics 158

7.5 Ecology 160

7.6 Solar Power Plant Markets 161

7.7 Outlook and Development Potential 162

8 Wind Power Systems – Electricity from Thin Air 165

8.1 Gone with the Wind – Where the Wind Comes From 166

8.2 Utilizing Wind 168

8.3 Installations and Parks 173

8.3.1 Wind Chargers 173

8.3.2 Grid-Connected Wind Turbines 174

8.3.3 Wind Farms 178

8.3.4 Offshore Wind Farms 179

8.4 Planning and Design 182

8.5 Economics 184

8.6 Ecology 187

8.7 Wind Power Markets 188

8.8 Outlook and Development Potential 189

9 Hydropower Plants – Wet Energy 191

9.1 Tapping into the Water Cycle 192

9.2 Water Turbines 194

9.3 Hydropower Plants 197

9.3.1 Run-of-River Power Plants 197

9.3.2 Storage Power Plants 198

9.3.3 Pumped-Storage Power Plants 200

9.3.4 Tidal Power Plants 201

9.3.5 Wave Power Plants 202

9.3.6 Ocean Current Power Plants 203

9.4 Planning and Design 204

9.5 Economics 206

9.6 Ecology 206

9.7 Hydropower Markets 207

9.8 Outlook and Development Potential 209

10 Geothermal Energy – Power from the Deep 210

10.1 Tapping into the Earth’s Heat 210

10.2 Geothermal Heat and Power Plants 215

10.2.1 Geothermal Heat Plants 215

10.2.2 Geothermal Power Plants 216

10.2.3 Geothermal HDR Power Plants 218

10.3 Planning and Design 219

10.4 Economics 220

10.5 Ecology 220

10.6 Geothermal Markets 221

10.7 Outlook and Development Potential 222

11 Heat Pumps – from Cold to Hot 223

11.1 Heat Sources for Low-Temperature Heat 223

11.2 Working Principle of Heat Pumps 226

11.2.1 Compression Heat Pumps 226

11.2.2 Absorption Heat Pumps and Adsorption Heat Pumps 227

11.3 Planning and Design 228

11.4 Economics 232

11.5 Ecology 233

11.6 Heat Pump Markets 235

11.7 Outlook and Development Potential 236

12 Biomass – Energy from Nature 237

12.1 Origins and Use of Biomass 238

12.2 Biomass Heating 241

12.2.1 Wood as a Fuel 241

12.2.2 Fireplaces and Closed Woodburning Stoves 245

12.2.3 Firewood Boilers 245

12.2.4 Wood Pellet Heating 246

12.3 Biomass Heat and Power Plants 248

12.4 Biofuels 250

12.4.1 Bio-oil 251

12.4.2 Biodiesel 251

12.4.3 Bioethanol 252

12.4.4 BtL Fuels 253

12.4.5 Biogas 254

12.5 Planning and Design 255

12.5.1 Firewood Boilers 256

12.5.2 Wood Pellet Heating 256

12.6 Economics 259

12.7 Ecology 260

12.7.1 Solid Fuels 260

12.7.2 Biofuels 262

12.8 Biomass Markets 263

12.9 Outlook and Development Potential 264

13 The Hydrogen Industry and Fuel Cells 265

13.1 Hydrogen as an Energy Source 266

13.1.1 Production of Hydrogen 267

13.1.2 Storage and Transport of Hydrogen 269

13.2 Fuel Cells: Bearers of Hope 270

13.3 Economics 272

13.4 Ecology 273

13.5 Markets, Outlook and Development Potential 274

14 Sunny Prospects – Examples of Sustainable Energy Supply 276

14.1 Climate-Compatible Living 276

14.1.1 Carbon-Neutral Standard Prefabricated Houses 277

14.1.2 Plus-Energy Solar House 278

14.1.3 Plus-Energy Housing Estate 279

14.1.4 Heating Only with the Sun 279

14.1.5 Zero Heating Costs after Redevelopment 280

14.2 Working and Producing in Compatibility with the Climate 281

14.2.1 Offi ces and Shops in Solar Ship 281

14.2.2 Zero-Emissions Factory 282

14.2.3 Carbon-Free Heavy Equipment Factory 283

14.3 Climate-Compatible Driving 284

14.3.1 Waste Gas-Free Electropower 284

14.3.2 Travelling around the World in a Solar Mobile 285

14.3.3 Across Australia in Thirty-Three Hours 286

14.3.4 Game over CO2! 287

14.4 Climate-Compatible Travel by Water or Air 288

14.4.1 Modern Shipping 288

14.4.2 Solar Ferry on Lake Constance 289

14.4.3 World Altitude Record with a Solar Aeroplane 290

14.4.4 Flying around the World in a Solar Plane 291

14.4.5 Flying for Solar Kitchens 292

14.5 Carbon-Free Electricity for an Island 293

14.6 All’s Well that Ends Well 294

Appendix 296

A.1 Energy Units and Prefixes 296

A.2 Geographic Coordinates of Energy Power Plants 297

References 300

Index 303

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Professor Volker Quaschning has been a full professor in renewable energy systems at the Berlin University of Applied Sciences since 2004. He has had more than fifteen years experience in the renewable energy sector. He is currently Area Head of Systems Analysis at Plataforma Solar de Almería, a research centre for solar technologies developed in collaboration between CIEMAT (public research institute linked with the Spanish government) and DLR (German aerospace centre).
Professor Quaschning has had more than 100 publications in the renewable energy field, including six textbooks; four in German, one in English and one in Arab.
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