Analysis of the potential of solar-based energy technologies to meet the energy demand of a hospital
Tutor / directorRamos Cabal, Alba
Document typeMaster thesis
Rights accessOpen Access
The objective of this thesis is to design a renewable energy system which supplies electrical and/or thermal energy to Hospital de Sant Pau, in Barcelona. This system is based in solar power harnessing technologies. With this purpose, the available technologies in the market are studied and the available data is analyzed: temperature, solar irradiation, weather and the hospital’s energy demand. Knowing these data, three installation alternatives are proposed, based on photovoltaic, thermal or hybrid solar panels, respectively. For each option, the number and distribution of panels is calculated and their energy output throughout the year is determined by using the aforementioned weather data. Since this information is available for every hour of a year, the calculations can be carried out with high detail. The energy output is optimized by adjusting the orientation of the panels and the separation between rows of panels. These energy outputs, emissions savings, costs, payback times and economic revenue of these alternatives have been studied in order to choose the most suitable system amongst them. The three alternatives have proven similar rentability and emissions savings per euro invested and have proven to be viable options. However, the solar thermal option has been chosen due to its slight advantages in economic terms in front of the hybrid option whilst providing an almost equal amount of energy (and thus, of emissions savings). Finally, a Life Cycle Assessment has been carried out for the chosen system. In conclusion, any of the studied solar-based renewable energy production systems is an economically viable option for the hospital, even if they can only cover a small percentage of the building’s vast energy demand. Environmentally speaking, it can be assured that at least the solar thermal project, which has been analyzed more deeply, is also viable, implying an important reduction of greenhouse gases emissions.
DegreeMÀSTER UNIVERSITARI EN ENGINYERIA DE L'ENERGIA (Pla 2013)