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Clean and Efficient Use of Energy

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "B2: Clean Energy".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (25 July 2023) | Viewed by 14673

Special Issue Editors

Lanzhou Institute of Chemical Physics (LICP), Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China
Interests: clean fuel; CO2 conversion; catalyst characterization; biodiesel; hydrogen storage; polyoxymethylene diethyl ethers; ethanol; methanol

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Guest Editor
State Key Laboratory of Coal Conversion, Institute of Coal Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Taiyuan 030001, China
Interests: C1 chemistry and engineering; nanomaterials synthesis; heterogeneous catalysis; syngas conversion to oxygenates; alcohol coupling and alkane dehydrogenation
State Key Laboratory of Heavy Oil Processing, China University of Petroleum, Beijing 102249, China
Interests: biomass conversion; electrocatalysis; carbon materials; 3D printing; X-ray absorption fine structure
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Guest Editor
School of Energy and Power Engineering, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710049, China
Interests: clean alternative fuels for internal combustion engines; emissions and controls of internal combustion engines; internal combustion engines; combustion of internal combustion engines and control of harmful emissions; clean alternative fuels for petroleum; methanol vehicle testing

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

At present, energy is being consumed intensively for the never-ending socio-economic activities. Humans must reduce the environmental impact and combat the climate change impacts of energy consumption. For example, carbon dioxide (CO2) has attracted global attention recently because of its huge emission and negative impact on global warming and climate change. Sustainable energy and clean and efficient energy utilization are essential to meet the sustainability goals of the future. This will require the development and implementation of energy resources, including the traditional oil, coal, natural gas, and hydroelectric power as well as the promising renewable sources (solar, biomass, wind, geothermal, etc.). The emissions and wastes from energy utilization processes need to be eliminated or reused. Additionally, the various pathways need to be well evaluated and guided.

This Special Issue is dedicated to the Clean and Efficient Use of Energy. Therefore, we invite original papers addressing the various topics related to the cleanliness, efficiency and sustainability of energy. In this Issue, the types of paper may include reviews, original research articles, highlights, perspectives, short communications, commentaries, and so on.

The topics of interest include but are not limited to:

  1. Biomass energy conversion and utilization;
  2. Conversion and utilization of CO2;
  3. Elimination of pollutantsin the use of energy;
  4. Electrocatalysis in energy applications;
  5. Clean alternative fuels;
  6. Emissions and controls in the use of energy;
  7. Clean and efficient utilization of coal;
  8. Clean utilization of methanol,ethanol and derived fuels;
  9. Hydrogen storage and release;
  10. Evaluating and implementing alternative energyapproaches.

Dr. Gangli Zhu
Dr. Kegong Fang
Dr. Ying Yang
Dr. Shenghua Liu
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • biomass
  • alternative fuels
  • CO2 utilization
  • elimination of pollutants
  • energy storage and release
  • electrocatalysis

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

14 pages, 1284 KiB  
Article
A Feasibility Analysis of a Solar Power Plant with Direct Steam Generation System in Sonora, Mexico
by Ernesto Enciso Contreras, Juan Gabriel Barbosa Saldaña, Jesus de la Cruz Alejo, Claudia Del C. Gutiérrez Torres, Jose Alfredo Jimenez Bernal and Maria Belem Arce Vazquez
Energies 2023, 16(11), 4388; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16114388 - 29 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1031
Abstract
Power generation using renewable technologies has become a primordial option to satisfy the energy demand all over the world, with solar concentrating technologies widely applied for this purpose. A combination of a parabolic trough collector with direct steam generation has been considered an [...] Read more.
Power generation using renewable technologies has become a primordial option to satisfy the energy demand all over the world, with solar concentrating technologies widely applied for this purpose. A combination of a parabolic trough collector with direct steam generation has been considered an excellent option for power generation as the economic cost and complexity in the plant are reduced. The thermal evaluation of a solar power plant as well as the PTC in the DSG process is very important in viability and economic analyses. In this sense, as the main objective of this work, a numerical tool for evaluating DSG with PTC technology was developed. The SOLEEC software is a versatile, reliable, accurate, and user-friendly option to thermally evaluate a DSG with PTC technology. The user has the possibility of comparing the thermal behavior of different geometrical dimensions for a PTC and even consider different materials to satisfy the demand of superheated steam by a DSG process. The software has an error of less than 5% when compared with the literature results and was used in this paper to evaluate a power plant in Mexico, showing that the change to DSG proposing different PTC could reduce the solar field by about 35%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clean and Efficient Use of Energy)
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17 pages, 2283 KiB  
Article
Production of Substitute Natural Gas Integrated with Allam Cycle for Power Generation
by Daniele Candelaresi and Giuseppe Spazzafumo
Energies 2023, 16(5), 2162; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16052162 - 23 Feb 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1693
Abstract
The accumulation of energy from non-programmable renewable sources is a crucial aspect for the energy transition. Using surplus electricity from renewable energy sources, power-to-gas plants allow to produce a substitute natural gas (SNG) that can be injected in the existing infrastructure for large-scale [...] Read more.
The accumulation of energy from non-programmable renewable sources is a crucial aspect for the energy transition. Using surplus electricity from renewable energy sources, power-to-gas plants allow to produce a substitute natural gas (SNG) that can be injected in the existing infrastructure for large-scale and long-term energy storage, contributing to gas grid decarbonisation. The plant layout, the method used for carbon dioxide capture and the possible cogeneration of electricity can increase the efficiency and convenience of SNG synthesis plants. In this work, a system for the simultaneous production of SNG and electricity starting from biomass and fluctuating electricity from renewables is proposed, using a plant based on the Allam thermodynamic cycle as the power unit. The Allam power cycle uses supercritical CO2 as evolving fluid and is based on the oxycombustion of gaseous fuels, thus greatly simplifying CO2 capture. In the proposed system, oxycombustion is performed using biomass syngas and electrolytic oxygen. The CO2 generated by means of oxycombustion is captured, and it is subsequently used together with renewable hydrogen for the production of SNG through thermochemical methanation. The system is also coupled with a solid oxide electrolyser and a biomass gasifier. The whole plant was analysed from an energy-related point of view. The results show overall plant efficiency of 67.6% on an LHV basis (71.6% on an HHV basis) and the simultaneous production of significant amounts of electricity and of high-calorific-value SNG, whose composition could be compatible with the existing natural gas network. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clean and Efficient Use of Energy)
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25 pages, 7982 KiB  
Article
Investigations on Three-Section Plate-Type Electrostatic Precipitators Used in Thermoelectric Power Plants
by Gabriel Nicolae Popa, Corina Maria Diniș and Angela Iagăr
Energies 2023, 16(3), 1186; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16031186 - 21 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1419
Abstract
Dust emissions must be managed and reduced as much as possible to safeguard the environment and human health. Plate-type electrostatic precipitators have been used to decrease pollution in a number of sectors, particularly for applications needing massive volumes of gas to be dedusted [...] Read more.
Dust emissions must be managed and reduced as much as possible to safeguard the environment and human health. Plate-type electrostatic precipitators have been used to decrease pollution in a number of sectors, particularly for applications needing massive volumes of gas to be dedusted at high dust concentrations and temperatures. This paper examines large-capacity plate-type electrostatic precipitators with three sections used in a coal-fired thermal power plant. Using simulations and experiments, the collection efficiency (in different ways of supplying sections, without and with sections rapping), the influence of dust resistivity and a dust layer on the surfaces of collection electrodes, the electrical parameters (voltage, current density, and space charge density) for the sections of the electrostatic precipitators, and the electrical parameters of the power sources (voltage, current, power, and power factor) are studied. A higher dust resistivity will cause a change in the shape of the voltage delivered to the sections, an increase in the average voltage from sections, and a decrease in collecting efficiency (by a few percent). A greater degree of intermittence alters the current-voltage characteristics of the sections, decreases the current across the sections, and improves collection efficiency. The density of space charges increases with the degree of intermittency and is highest at the input section. With increasing thickness of the dust layer on the collection electrodes, the collection efficiency increases. PM10 dust particles (which have a lower migration speed) are the hardest to collect with ESPs. When the sections are rapping, PM 20–30 dust particles are more difficult to collect because their migration speeds decrease significantly (compared to the situation when the sections are not rapping). The operation of the power sources of the ESP sections is dynamic, being controlled by the regulators, and the current (or current density), depending on the voltage characteristics, changes permanently (at intervals of a few seconds). The power sources of the sections are deforming consumers (the current is much different from the sinusoidal form). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clean and Efficient Use of Energy)
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Review

Jump to: Research

31 pages, 1100 KiB  
Review
Investigating the Potential of Nuclear Energy in Achieving a Carbon-Free Energy Future
by Jānis Krūmiņš and Māris Kļaviņš
Energies 2023, 16(9), 3612; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16093612 - 22 Apr 2023
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 6268
Abstract
This scientific paper discusses the importance of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate the effects of climate change. The proposed strategy is to reach net-zero emissions by transitioning to electric systems powered by low-carbon sources such as wind, solar, hydroelectric power, and nuclear [...] Read more.
This scientific paper discusses the importance of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate the effects of climate change. The proposed strategy is to reach net-zero emissions by transitioning to electric systems powered by low-carbon sources such as wind, solar, hydroelectric power, and nuclear energy. However, the paper also highlights the challenges of this transition, including high costs and lack of infrastructure. The paper emphasizes the need for continued research and investment in renewable energy technology and infrastructure to overcome these challenges and achieve a sustainable energy system. Additionally, the use of nuclear energy raises concerns, such as nuclear waste and proliferation, and should be considered with its benefits and drawbacks. The study assesses the feasibility of nuclear energy development in Latvia, a country in Northern Europe, and finds that Latvia is a suitable location for nuclear power facilities due to potential energy independence, low-carbon energy production, reliability, and economic benefits. The study also discusses methods of calculating electricity generation and consumption, such as measuring MWh produced by power plants, and balancing supply and demand within the country. Furthermore, the study assesses the safety of nuclear reactors, generated waste, and options for nuclear waste recycling. The transition to a carbon-free energy system is ongoing and complex, requiring multiple strategies to accelerate the transition. While the paper proposes that nuclear energy could be a practical means of supporting and backing up electricity generated by renewables, it should be noted that there are still challenges to be addressed. Some of the results presented in the paper are still based on studies, and the post-treatment of waste needs to be further clarified. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clean and Efficient Use of Energy)
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31 pages, 1178 KiB  
Review
The Baltic States’ Move toward a Sustainable Energy Future
by Jānis Krūmiņš and Māris Kļaviņš
Energies 2022, 15(21), 8230; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15218230 - 04 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2070
Abstract
In respect to CO2 emissions, the post-Soviet states are a scientifically interesting object of research, as each of the countries has developed via different paths since reclaiming independence from the Soviet Union. Given that each country has a different approach to the [...] Read more.
In respect to CO2 emissions, the post-Soviet states are a scientifically interesting object of research, as each of the countries has developed via different paths since reclaiming independence from the Soviet Union. Given that each country has a different approach to the use of fossil resources, it is essential to assess their input to global carbon footprint individually. Such assessment then allows to find certain actions in the development of legislation and to apply focused techniques to reduce carbon emissions. The aim of this study was to evaluate the fossil CO2 emissions produced in the Baltic States from 1991 onward, describing challenges relating to sustainability and socio-economic, scientific, and integrated approaches to sustainable development, including clean and efficient use of energy, and thus addressing climate challenges. This paper reports on data on CO2 emissions in the Baltic States. The results show that the transition of the Baltic States from the specificities of the Soviet Union’s economy to an economy integrated into global markets has led to a significant reduction in CO2 emissions. However, the development and implementation of national policies for sustainable development are still crucial for mitigation of the climate crisis. Further actions must include the implementation and monitoring of policies for sustainable development, changing of the consumption and production patterns, education and awareness of sustainability, and adaptation to global climate change, while also addressing sustainability challenges. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clean and Efficient Use of Energy)
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26 pages, 5825 KiB  
Review
The Relationship between Structure and Catalytic Activity-Stability of Non-Precious Metal-Based Catalysts towards Levulinic Acid Hydrogenation to γ-Valerolactone: A Review
by Ying Yang, Yuhang Sun and Xinruo Luo
Energies 2022, 15(21), 8093; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15218093 - 31 Oct 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1427
Abstract
Hydrogenation of levulinic acid (LA) to γ-valerolactone (GVL) is regarded as the bridge between bio-refinery and the traditional petroleum industry. In recent years, non-precious metal-based catalysts for LA hydrogenation to GVL have attracted much attention owing to their low cost and high efficiency. [...] Read more.
Hydrogenation of levulinic acid (LA) to γ-valerolactone (GVL) is regarded as the bridge between bio-refinery and the traditional petroleum industry. In recent years, non-precious metal-based catalysts for LA hydrogenation to GVL have attracted much attention owing to their low cost and high efficiency. Metal-involving catalytic hydrogenation of LA is the rate-determining step in the production of GVL, and thus the active site structure of metal-based catalysts governs the overall catalytic performance. Herein, non-precious metal-based catalytic systems including Cu, Zr, Co and Ni are classified into single metal (M = Ni, Cu and Co), bimetallic (Cu–Ni, Ag–Ni, Cu–Co and Co–Zn), metal-heteroatom (M–O and M–N) and heterostructured (CePO4/CoP2 and Ni/NiO) catalysts according to the type of active site structure. The correlation of active site structure with catalytic activity is discussed emphatically, and its relationship with stability is also referred to in terms of strong metal–support interaction, bimetallic synergism, core–shell structure and heterojunction. This review provides an important guide for the rational design of high-performance non-precious metal-based catalysts for the LA-to-GVL process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Clean and Efficient Use of Energy)
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