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Christy Green
The University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL 35205, USA

Hessam Taherian
The University of Alabama at Birmingham, 1720 Second Ave S., Birmingham, AL 35294, USA

DOI: 10.1615/TFEC2017.ewp.018125
pages 1165-1172


A distributed generation (DG) system produces power at the point of use. DG systems can increase energy system reliability, reduce peak power requirements, and improve energy infrastructure resilience. This is done by integrating multi-generation with renewable energy conversion devices. Overall utilization factors of more than 95% have been reported in technical literature.
In this study, commercial energy modeling software was used to model a DG system using renewable energy sources and energy storage for typical residences in ASHRAE climate zone 3A. 3D graphical modeling software was used to generate models for the residences based on Building America House Simulation Protocols. Data from the Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) was used to model the energy consumption of each residence. Standard weather data from four cities across climate zone 3A was used for both the residential and renewable resource simulations. The energy sources considered in this analysis included a photovoltaic array and wind turbine. The results of these simulations were used to determine the most efficient and reliable DG system for four locations across climate zone 3A. This report shows that geographic location has a significant impact on photovoltaic and wind energy conversion, as well as the energy profile of residential buildings. This computer simulation may be used to assess the performance of renewable energy technologies and energy storage systems for any given climate, making the implementation of renewable energy technology more practical for homeowners.

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