Renewable energy sources

4P510 - Renewable energy sources


This course treats the scientific and technological fundamentals of renewable energy sources and the techniques for their conversion and storage. It is given by lecturers from various disciplines, both from the university and from outside university. The following renewable energy sources are treated: hydropower, energy from biomass, photovoltaic energy conversion, wind energy, passive use of solar energy for space heating and solar collectors.

  • General Introduction (2 hours)
    Energy need, energy sources, renewable energy sources, energy systems, energy scenarios
  • Hydro power (2 hours)
    History of hydro power engines, fluid mechanics, types of turbines, calculation of power delivered, estimation of hydro potential, new developments.
  • Energy from biomass (2 hours)
    What is biomass, formation of biomass by photosynthesis, conversion by combustion, gasification and fermentalization, efficiencies, examples of installations.
  • Photovoltaic energy conversion (2 hours)
    Physics of light, semiconductors and diodes, principle of operation of solar cells, various types of solar cells, autonomous and grid connected photovoltaic systems, estimation of cost.
  • Wind energy (2 hours)
    Wind speed, wind speed distribution, conversion systems, power calculations, economical considerations, applications.
  • Solar collectors (2 hours)
    Principle of operation of solar collectors, interaction between collector and storage vessel, estimation of energy yield and conversion efficiencies, various technical executions, concentrating collectors, determination of daily yield.
  • Renewable energy in the built environment (2 hours)
    Energy flows, passive solar energy, and heat pumps.
  • Hydrogen technology (2 hours)
  • Storage of thermal energy (2 hours)
    Different types of thermal energy storage, storage charging and discharging, applications for heat storage in liquids and solids.

Learning objectives

  • Obtaining a good overview of the various renewable energy sources that exist.
  • Obtaining of unstanding of the basic principles of the various renewable energy sources.
  • Obtaining of insight in the actual status of the various renewable energy sources.