Renewable Energy & Advanced Power Electronics Research Lab
Undergraduate researchers Abdelrahman, Seif, and Nabila present research paper at the 2020 IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC)
Recently graduated BSc. students Mr. Abdelrahman Amer, Mr. Seif Elgazar, and Ms. Nabila ElBeheiry presented their paper entitled “A Techno-Economic Study of Rooftop Grid-Connected Photovoltaic-Energy Storage Systems in Qatar” at the 47th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC), held virtually from June 15 to August 21st, 2020.
Their paper investigated techniques for optimal sizing of the photovoltaic and energy storage components for a residential-based hybrid system in Qatar. They added innovative techniques including load modulation which subtly reduced energy consumption during times of excessive storage depleted to ensure that the most critical loads remained serviced. This was show to further minimize overall system costs. The result of this study presents the implementation steps of an economically feasible PV-ESS grid-connected system in the State of Qatar. The significance of these results is to portray techniques that can be used to set energy policies in the State of Qatar. Dr. Morcos Metry, a PostDoc in the REAPERlab, and Ms. Sawsan Shukri, a staff research assistant, assisted in mentoring the team.
Dr. Wesam Rohouma presents a research paper at the 47th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC)
Dr. Wesam Rohouma presented a paper co-authored with Dr. Robert Balog, Ph.D. student Mr. Aaqib Ahmad Peerzada, and Dr. Miroslav M. Begovic entitled “Parallel Operation of Capacitor-less D-STATCOM to Allow More Penetration of Photovoltaic Systems in Distribution Network” at the 47th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC), held virtually from June 15 to August 21st, 2020.
The paper proposes the use of parallel D-STATCOM devices dispersed within the distribution network to provide support that enables more penetration of solar PV systems to the distribution network. With a form-factor similar to a standard pad-mounted transformer, the D-STATCOM provides reactive power to control voltage profile, and harmonics compensation to minimize the distortion in upstream voltages and currents. Results show that the proposed parallel D-STATOCM devices have considerably improved the voltage profile at all the buses in the feeder.
TAMUQ undergraduate student selected for Undergraduate Research Scholars Outstanding Thesis Award in Science, Technology, Math, and Engineering (STEM)!
Texas A&M University at Qatar undergraduate students Fatima Al-Janahi ’20 and Rahul Balamuruga ’20 mentored by Dr. Robert S. Balog have been awarded the Texas A&M University Undergraduate Research Scholars (URS) Outstanding Thesis Award for STEM.
Photovoltaic (PV) system fire hazards pose a serious threat to public safety and finances. Arc faults are one of the main causes of electrical fires, shock hazards, and failures in PV systems, thus, arc fault detection is crucial for reliable and safe system operation and is a prerequisite for high penetration of PV. To develop effective arc-fault detectors, a thorough understanding of the electrical characteristics of PV arcs is required, which is possible only by obtaining large samples of voltage and current waveforms. Various combinations of electrode material and geometry, electrical voltage and current, and electrode gap separation profile can be studied as these factors are hypothesized to affect the electrical characteristics of the arc. The arc voltage and current waveforms are then analyzed using spectral analysis methods.
Their research was supported in part by an Undergraduate Research Experience Program (UREP) grant # UREP24-023-2-010 from the Qatar National Research Fund (a member of Qatar Foundation).
The REAPER lab congratulates Dr. Morcos Metry for graduating with his Ph.D. from Texas A&M University
Dr. Morcos Metry received his Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering. His dissertation entitled “Model Predictive Control Methods for Photovoltaic Electrical Energy Conversion Systems” studied the theory of finite control set model predictive control (MPC) and the application to power electronics for photovoltaic (PV) energy systems. He developed novel control algorithms based on MPC for sensorless maximum power point tracking (MPPT) of the PV cells, control of single and three-phase grid-interactive inverters, and active filtering of the double-frequency power ripple within the single-phase inverter. His research resulted in a US patent application in addition to many scholarly conferences and journal publications. He also has extensive teaching experience as the primary lecturer and course instructor for the power electronics class as a Graduate Teaching Fellow for two years.
Dr. Metry received his B.S. from Texas A&M University at Qatar in electrical and computer engineering, with honors, in May 2014. Then he joined the Electrical and Computer Engineering department at Texas A&M University, College Station, TX USA to pursue his Ph.D. in Power Electronics. Morcos is also a research trainee in the Research and Development department of Qatar Foundation. His interest areas are in photovoltaic integration with the power grid using advanced control methods.
The REAPER lab congratulates undergraduate students Mr. Seif ElGazer, Mr. Abdelrahman Amer, and Ms. Nabila Elbeheiry on their graduation from Texas A&M University in Qatar
Undergraduate students Mr. Seif ElGazer, Mr. Abdelrahman Amer, and Ms. Nabila Elbeheiry graduated each their B.S. in electrical engineering. As a research team, they have been a part of the REAPER lab over the last year and conducted innovative research in load modulation strategies suitable for hybrid residential photovoltaic energy systems with storage. They had the unique privilege of presenting their project with a working demonstration to HH Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser and HE Hassan Al Thawadi during the 25th-anniversary symposium “I AM QF” of the Qatar Foundation. They have submitted their research results for publication. The REAPERlab wishes them good luck as they start a new chapter in their professional lives.
Undergraduate students present research at the Texas A&M University Undergraduate Research Scholars (URS) Symposium
Undergraduate students Ms. Fatima Al-Janahi and Mr. Rahul Balamurugan presented their research on characterizing electrical arc in photovoltaic energy systems at the Undergraduate Research Scholars Symposium in College Station, Tx USA
The team developed a computer-controlled mechatronics testbed to facilitate scientifically repeatable photovoltaic arc generation conditions and waveform recording. Moreover, the team created a MATLAB program to analyze the FFTs and STFTs of the current and voltage waveforms recorded. Their research was supported in part by an Undergraduate Research Experience Program (UREP) grant # UREP24-023-2-010 from the Qatar National Research Fund (a member of Qatar Foundation).
Ph.D. student Ms. Minjeong Kim presented her paper entitled “A PWM Method for Single-Phase Current-Sourced High Frequency AC Link Inverter” at the 2020 IEEE Texas Power and Energy Conference in College Station, Tx USA
The paper proposes a new pulse width modulation method for a current-sourced high frequency ac link inverter and the operation principles of a current sourced HF ac link inverter are deeply analyzed.
Ph.D. student Mr. Lance Alpuerto presented his paper entitled “Comparing Connection Topologies of PV Integrated Curved Roof Tile for Improved Performance” at the 4th IEEE Texas Power and Energy Conference (TPEC) in College Station, Tx USA.
Partial shaded conditions diminish the performance of photovoltaic (PV) applications. Depending on the intensity and pattern of shading, the PV system will generate varying levels of current. This work investigates the performance under different connection schemes as a method of current mismatch mitigation for thin-film photovoltaics applied to a curved roof tile. Experimental testing of a-Si material on a curved roof tile replica suggests novel interconnection methods can significantly improve the capabilities of curved applications.
Senior design team presents project on smart residential photovoltaic and energy storage systems during the I AM QF event
Undergraduate students Mr. Seif ElGazer, Mr. Abdelrahman Amer, and Ms. Nabila Elbeheiry present their senior design project at the I AM QF conference which commemorated the 25th anniversary of the Qatar Foundation in Doha, Qatar. Senior design is meant to be a capstone for the undergraduate curriculum in which students integrate knowledge gained through their studies into a final project.
The team carried out a detailed techno-economic study for the implementation of a grid-connected rooftop photovoltaic and energy storage system in the State of Qatar through the development of novel electric load control techniques. Moreover, the team investigated the supplementary technology required to improve the overall resilience of the electrical power system when faced with overload, weather, or other natural/man-made disturbances. The team presented their work to HH Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser and HE Hassan Al Thawadi during an event commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Qatar Foundation.
The REAPER lab congratulates Mr. Moustafa Raslan for graduating with his M.S. from Texas A&M University
Mr. Moustafa Raslan received his M.S. degree in interdisciplinary engineering in December 2019. His thesis entitled “Shape Memory Alloy Actuated Switch (SMAAS)” studied the feasibility of using shape memory alloy as a mechanism for actuating an electrical switch. He evaluated several candidate designs, downselecting to feasible designs which were then prototypes to demonstrate the functionality. Mr. Raslan’s contributions are expected to enable an entirely new type of electrical switch, capable of being miniaturized using micro-electro-mechanical (MEMs) techniques. His research resulted in a US patent application in addition to scholarly publications.
Moustafa received his B.S. with Honors in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University in Qatar in May 2017. His research interests include electro-mechanical systems, shape memory alloys and microfabrication.