Risorse bibliografiche
Risorsa bibliografica obbligatoria
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativa
Scheda Riassuntiva
Anno Accademico 2018/2019
Scuola Scuola di Ingegneria Industriale e dell'Informazione
Docente Macchi Ennio , Perini Roberto
Cfu 10.00 Tipo insegnamento Corso Integrato

Corso di Studi Codice Piano di Studio preventivamente approvato Da (compreso) A (escluso) Insegnamento

Obiettivi dell'insegnamento

Renewable energy sources


The course aims to illustrate the technologies available for the production of electrical and/or thermal energy from Renewable Energy Sources (RES) and to discuss the present and future role of RES in the worldwide scenario. The course deals with the production of electricity and/or heat/cold from RES by providing the theoretical basis, the principles of operation, the technological solutions, the environmental impact and the application contexts of these power plants. Non-programmable sources (sun, wind, water) as well as for sources that are more programmable (biomass, biowaste, hydroelectric basin) or are used for covering the base load (geothermal). The course provides the students with the skills to operate in the field of power plants from RES: from decision-making skills required in the design phase, including the evaluation of economical competetitiveness, to the technical and operational skills required during the operation phase.



Network interface


The course deals with static converters, based on diodes, thyristors and controllable switches together with electromagnetic devices. The schemes, the operation, the control, the component data, together with the input and output quantities are analyzed. Some applications dealing with the network interface of converters connected to renewable energy sources are analysed.

Risultati di apprendimento attesi

Renewable energy sources


Upon fullfillment of the course, the students will be able to:

- understand the laws of physics which rule the behaviour of the various technologies applied in the renewable energy field (DdD1)

- understand the theoretical potential of satisfying world energy needs of main renewable energy sources (DdD1)

- become familiar with the state-of-the-art of main technologies applied to produce electrical energy from renewable sources (DdD2)

- justify the typical performances of power plants based on renewable energy sources (DdD2,3)

- fulfill preliminary design of renewable energy plants and select the design parameters of main components (DdD3,4)

- learn how to calculate yearly energy balances of plants based upon renewable energies (DdD3,4)

- become familiar with economic parameters related to power plant operation (DdD2)

during the exam, the student should show his ability to solve problems (DdD3) and to describe the relevant aspects of various technologies related to renewable energy sources)


Network interface


After passing the exam, the student:

will know the fundamental principles, the theory and concepts of Power Electronics applied to the network interface (DdD1);

will learn how to apply some concepts, learnt in other courses, to Power Electronics: in detail, reference is made to the thermal aspects, most important in the design of a converter, and to control theory, necessary to make a controlled converter operate (DdD2);

will be able to simulate a converter in Matlab/Simulink and to design its control system, implementing it (DdD2).

Datasheets of common static switches will be provided during the course: the student will learn how to pick up the necessary and useful information (DdD2).

During the exam, the student should show the ability to find out the best way to solve a problem (DdD3, 5) and to describe some aspects of a converter in a sequential and understandable way (DdD4) 

Argomenti trattati

Renewable energy sources

  • Introduction and perspectives. The potential of renewable energy sources: present role, near term and long term future. Types of sources and issues related to their use for the production of electrical and thermal energy. Incentives for RES development. Current situation and forecast scenarios. Hybrid solutions, integration with fossil fuels and storage systems. Stand alone and grid connected solutions.

  • Wind energy. Betz theory and operational laws, types of machines, applications. Sizing criteria, regulation and characteristics. Coupling with the electrical generator and power electronic converters. Characterization of wind site and profitability analysis for a wind turbine field. Environmental impact of wind farms. Off-shore wind farms. Mini-wind turbines.

  • Geothermal energy. Types of geothermal sources: vapour-dominated or liquid-dominated, hot dry rocks. Drilling and exploration techniques. Plants for the production of electrical energy: direct steam, flash, binary plants. ORC plants. Cogeneration, with district heating/cooling and other low temperature heat users.

  • Energy from biomass and biowaste. Types of biomass and potential. Conversion systems with grate boilers: steam cycles and ORC. Gasifiers and internal combustion engines. Flue gas treatment plants. Anaerobic digestion systems for the production of biogas.

  • Solar energy. Solar radiation: potential, solar spectrum, angles. Prediction of available energy on plan and tilted surfaces.

  1. Photovoltaic plant: photoelectric effect, silicon photovoltaic cells, electrical characteristic of the cell and manufacturing of solar cells and photovoltaic arrays, inverter and power conditioning systems. First, second and third generation. Design criteria of grid connected plant and stand-alone plant. Thin-film solar photovoltaic cells and multi-junction cells, recent technological developments.

  2. CSP (Concentrated Solar Power) plants: classification of concentrating systems. Cylindrical-parabolic collectors, parabolic dish systems, Fresnel systems, central receiver systems. Working fluids, thermodynamic cycles and thermal storage tanks.

  3. Heat production for domestic applications.

  4. Solar cooling.

  • Hydroelectric energy: types of hydroelectric power plants (dams, Pumped-storage, Run-of-the-river). Types of plants and hydraulic machines. Mini-hydro. Potential of hydro resource. Sizing criteria and management. Environmental impact.

  • Wave energy. Classification of technologies available or being tested: energy from marine currents, wave, tidal, systems that exploit the thermal gradient of the oceans (OTEC). 

  • Micro-cogeneration, trigeneration and heat pumps. Various heat sinks: air, ground and well. Working principles, prime movers, potential and economic competitiveness.




Network interface

1) The components. Diodes, thyristors and controllable switches; auxiliary components (“snubbers”, inductors, capacitors for power factor correction and filtering).

2) General aspects. Real switches (characteristic curves, losses, delays, …). Switching and switch losses.

3) Line-commutated a.c-d.c. conversion. Single – phase and three – phase Graetz rectifier, with different types of load (RL or RC); phase–control; harmonic analysis.

4) D.c. – d.c. conversion. “buck”, “boost”, "buck-boost" converters. Bi-directional switching power-pole: application to battery charge/discharge.

5) D.c. – a.c. conversion. Two – level, single – phase and three – phase VSI inverters: schemes, modulation techniques; harmonic analysis; Three – level VSI inverter; operation as an inverter and as a rectifier. Inverters for PhotoVoltaic (PV) applications. Design of the control system for a PV plant connected to the grid. Multilevel inverters: NPC configuration.

6) Thermal behaviour of the converters. Systems with one or two time constants, thermal transient impedance, cooling.

7) Synthetic inertia: control of the static converters.




Renewable energy sources

The prerequisits model covers the basic knowledge of thermodynamics, fluid-dynamics and electricity rules 

Network Interface

The student should have some basic knowledge of: Electric Power Systems, Automatic controls

Modalità di valutazione

Renewable energy sources

Oral examination at the end of the course on the entire program.

Part of the oral exam deals with the technical papers prepared by the students during the numerical applications.

In particular it is mandatory for students handing in during oral examination written reports describing the adopted solution and the commented results of the numerical applications.

The oral examination assesses the student capability of:

- describe the model approches (DdD1,2,4)

- justify the typical performance of various plants based on renewable energy sources on design as well as on off-design conditions (DdD2,3)

- comment the economic competitiveness fo various solutions (DdD3,4)

- draw simplified plant schemes (DdD3,4) 


Network Interface

The exam consists in a written test (three hours) and an optional oral test (30-45 minutes) for those who wish to improve their mark.  The teacher may decide to require the oral test, if he thinks it is necessary.

The student must:
*) express a reasoning in a linear way: the assumptions, the development and the conclusions (DdD4); a neat written task is required (DdD4);
*) explain the operation of a converter from an analytical view-point, through schemes, formulas and plots (DdD1);
*) solve the numerical exercises, analysing the results critically (DdD1, 2);
*) make correlations between different subjects (DdD2).
The numerical exercises explained during the lectures are a subject of the exam.


Risorsa bibliografica obbligatoria slides prepared by the teacher available on the BEEP of the Course
Risorsa bibliografica obbligatoriaMohan - Undeland - Robbins, Power Electronics, Editore: Wiley, Anno edizione: 2003
Risorsa bibliografica obbligatoriaS. Crepaz, Thermal behaviour of static switches, Editore: Cusl

Avaialble at library CUSL, building 3 Leonardo

Forme didattiche
Tipo Forma Didattica Ore di attività svolte in aula
Ore di studio autonome
Laboratorio Informatico
Laboratorio Sperimentale
Laboratorio Di Progetto
Totale 100:00 150:00

Informazioni in lingua inglese a supporto dell'internazionalizzazione
Insegnamento erogato in lingua Inglese
Disponibilità di materiale didattico/slides in lingua inglese
Disponibilità di libri di testo/bibliografia in lingua inglese
Possibilità di sostenere l'esame in lingua inglese
Disponibilità di supporto didattico in lingua inglese
schedaincarico v. 1.6.5 / 1.6.5
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