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Experiences with a PV-Driven Seawater Desalination System Using an Operating Control Strategy for Operation Without Batteries

: Went, J.; Schies, A.; Anhalt, J.; Vetter, M.


European Commission:
26th European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition, EU PVSEC. Proceedings : 5th to 9th September 2011 at the CCH - Congress Centre and International Fair Hamburg in Germany
München: WIP-Renewable Energies, 2011
ISBN: 3-936338-27-2
European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition (EU PVSEC) <26, 2011, Hamburg>
Conference Paper
Fraunhofer ISE ()
Elektrische Energiesysteme; Regenerative Stromversorgung; Dezentrale Wasseraufbereitung

Availability of drinking water and fresh water for irrigation is going to be more critical for many arid regions in the world. In rural areas suffering from water scarcity and insufficient infrastructure, decentralized autonomous seawater desalination systems could be a sustainable solution for fresh water production. Autonomy could be achieved through coupling RO desalination with PV especially because the need for seawater desalination often coincides with regions receiving large amounts of solar irradiation. Such autonomous solar driven desalination system for rural areas needs to be cost effective and requiring low maintenance. One way to achieve this is through reducing or eliminating the need for energy storage devices while producing as much water as possible during sunshine hours without losses. A photovoltaic reverse osmosis system without energy storage has to be tracked to the solar power offered. This results in an intermittent and dynamic operation, which requires sophisticated operating control strategies. A photovoltaic driven reverse osmosis desalination system (PV-RO) that meets these requirements was developed and realized at Fraunhofer ISE.