Behavioural investigation of campus consumption against potential renewable generation for self-sustainability model

McGill, Euan
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At present the university hosts a small commercial PV installation located on a small section of the EPS rooftop area. In this system all production is fed directly back into the utility grid through a series of small DC-AC convertors. This PV array covers only a very small portion of the overall roof top surface area which the Montilivi campus has to offer. This report aims to investigate the potential for the campus to become fully self-sufficient with regards to its energy consumption by expanding this existing system, and thus further utilising the wonderful solar resource which is available in the area. This report will use a Matlab simulation validated using the current installation in order to investigate the potential energy production capabilities of the university with the solar array expanded over the full campus. State of the art technologies which have been developed since the current systems construction will also be investigated and included in the simulation. Observing the results, it will be possible to clearly understand the further benefits in terms of production which these new technologies could propose to such a system. Other topics which will be explored include demand side management; observing how peaks in demand could be potentially altered through user behaviour in order to ensure that maximum production and consumption align throughout the day. In addition to analysing the effects of increasing the universities production capacity, a series of case studies will be examined in order to observe how campus consumption could be vastly reduced through both intelligent design and also energy saving incentives. The results from this report will provide vital data regarding both the daily and monthly “Production Vs Consumption” relationships for this newly proposed system. This data will be essential for use in a parallel study which will assess the financial feasibility of the expansion and also propose new ideas for how the energy produced should be consumed. Based or current market prices for both small scale generators feeding in and also consumers buying out from the grid, different utilisation methods will be discussed including battery storage, grid export and direct consumption in order to provide an insight into the most profitable option or combination of options for this specific investigation ​
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