EPJ Web of Conferences
Volume 54, 2013New Strategies for Energy Generation, Conversion and Storage
|Number of page(s)||9|
|Published online||26 June 2013|
Efficiency versus cost — A fundamental design conflict in energy science
ABB Switzerland, Corporate Research – CH-5405 Baden-Dättwil, Switzerland
An essential design conflict in energy technology is the trade-off between efficiency and cost. The lecture introduces concepts that deal with this trade-off and discusses real world examples. Among the many definitions of efficiency, exergetic efficiency is the most rigorous and often the most adequate for analyzing the efficiency of a process. Exergy is the maximum work obtainable from a system as it comes into equilibrium with its environment. Exergetic efficiency is illustrated here with the heating of buildings. The right concept to analyze the trade-off between efficiency and the initial capital cost of equipment is the net present value analysis. We discuss two examples, overhead power lines and energy storage. Electrothermal energy storage is a new energy storage technology that builds on both concepts, optimization of exergetic efficiency and balancing of initial cost with that efficiency. Finally, non-technical barriers for energy efficiency are mentioned.
© Owned by the authors, published by EDP Sciences - SIF 2013
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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