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Techno-economic and GHG mitigation assessment of concentrated solar thermal and PV systems for different climate zones

Ullah, Asad, Mahmood, Mariam, Iqbal, Sheeraz, Sajid, Muhammad Bilal, Hassan, Zohaib, AboRas, Kareem M., Kotb, Hossam, Shouran, Mokhtar ORCID: and Abdul Samad, Bdereddin ORCID: 2023. Techno-economic and GHG mitigation assessment of concentrated solar thermal and PV systems for different climate zones. Energy Reports 9 , pp. 4763-4780. 10.1016/j.egyr.2023.03.109

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In this study, energy production by two solar energy technologies, namely concentrated solar power (CSP) and photovoltaic (PV) power, is compared from a technical, economic and environmental perspective. Initially, a 50 MW CSP plant is modeled and simulated at four selected sites in Pakistan. Then, the most feasible location of the CSP plant is compared with the solar PV plant of the same capacity. The effect of the solar thermal storage size and cooling system of the CSP system is investigated, while the photovoltaic tracking system is investigated to evaluate the technical and economic performance of the power plants. Technical performance is evaluated based on energy generation and capacity factors metrics, while economic performance is evaluated with respect to levelized cost, payback period and net present value. In addition, environmental criteria such as reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), saving fossil fuels, and life-cycle water consumption are evaluated. From the results, it was concluded that the CSP plant located in Quetta is technically and economically viable. The capacity factor of the CSP plant is 36.6% compared to 19.8% for the PV plant, while the solar-to-electrical efficiency of the CSP plant is 14.2% compared to 20.8% for the PV plant. The required land area is 2.77 acres/GWh for the CSP plant and 2.33 acres/GWh for the PV plant, while the net capital cost of the CSP plant is five times higher than that of the PV plant. Various design parameters are optimized to obtain the minimum levelized cost of energy (LCOE) for both CSP and PV plants. The results of CSP and PV plants indicate that the LCOE can be reduced to 11.57 cents/kWh and 4.69 cents/kWh, respectively. Thus, the CSP plant performs better from the technical point of view while the PV plant performs better from the economic perspective.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Engineering
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 2352-4847
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 22 May 2023
Date of Acceptance: 21 March 2023
Last Modified: 10 Feb 2024 02:11

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