No 2 (2019): Resource-Efficient Technologies



Introduction: Water, energy, and the environment are three important elements of sustainable development. Production of potable water using desalination technologies powered by renewable energy systems could help solve water scarcity in remote areas with shortages of water or conventional energy sources, or in large cities with air pollution. Hybridization of solar and wind could increase the sustainability and availability of renewable energy sources and reduce energy costs. Additionally, hybridization of reverse osmosis (RO) and MSF could increase efficiency and desalinated water quality and decrease desalinated water cost. Materials and Methods: The research method in this paper is based on modeling, computer simulation, and optimization with MATLAB software, and manufacturing and evaluating the plant at the Tarbiat Modares University Renewable Energy Laboratory. Results: The process of manufacturing the MSF system, solar panel structure, and wind turbine was explained and modeling and optimization results were presented. Testing results of the plant were mentioned, as were the produced power of wind turbine simulated and plant performance evaluated under the environmental conditions of the Tehran region. The rate of fresh water production under changing feed water salinity was evaluated and the real costs of fresh water produced ($/m3) were estimated. At the end of this section, model results and test results were compared. Conclusion: Hybridization of RO and MSF systems with wind and solar energy resources led to increased system reliability and flexibility and higher produced drinking water quality. The desalinated water cost was 1.35 $/m3 in theory and 1.5 $/m3 for actual conditions. Hybridization of wind, solar, RO, and MSF showed proved the best choices to minimize water cost compared to fossil fuel RO or MSF, wind RO, wind MSF, solar RO, solar MSF, or fossil fuel RO-MSF. Hybridization of RO and MSF would result in better economics and operation characteristics than those corresponding to MSF. Water cost can be reduced by 23 to 26% of that of a sole MSF process and the amount of desalinated water produced by the hybrid RO-MSF system is much greater than that of MSF. A comparison of theory outputs and experimental test results showed very good agreement between measured and model data. The test results of the manufactured hybrid solar-wind RO-MSF justified theory results.


Hybrid solar-wind RO-MSF, desalinated water, cost of energy, efficiency, comparison of test and theory results


Bahareh Heidary

Teymour Tavakoli

Barat Ghobadian

Ramin Roshandel

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