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Energy Management for Automatic Monitoring Stations in Arctic Regions Open Access


Other title
Energy management
Monitoring station
Computational intelligence
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Pimentel, Demian
Supervisor and department
Knight, Andrew (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Musilek, Petr (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Examining committee member and department
Sharp, Martin (Earth and Atmospheric Sciences)
Pizzi, Nick (Computer Science)
Reformat, Marek (Electrican and Computer Engineering)
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Energy Systems
Date accepted
Graduation date
Doctor of Philosophy
Degree level
Automatic weather monitoring stations deployed in arctic regions are usually installed in hard to reach locations. Most of the time they run unsupervised and they face severe environmental conditions: very low temperatures, ice riming, etc. It is usual practice to use a local energy source to power the equipment. There are three main ways to achieve this: (1) a generator whose fuel has to be transported to the location at regular intervals (2) a battery and (3) an energy harvesting generator that exploits a local energy source. Hybrid systems are very common. Polar nights and long winters are typical of arctic regions. Solar radiation reaching the ground during this season is very low or non-existent, depending on the geographical location. Therefore, solar power generation is not very effective. One straightforward, but expensive and inefficient solution is the use of a large bank of batteries that is recharged during sunny months and discharged during the winter. The main purpose of the monitoring stations is to collect meteorological data at regular intervals; interruptions due to a lack of electrical energy can be prevented with the use of an energy management subsystem. Keeping a balance between incoming and outgoing energy flows, while assuring the continuous operation of the station, is the delicate task of energy management strategies. This doctoral thesis explores alternate power generation solutions and intelligent energy management techniques for equipment deployed in the arctic. For instance, harvesting energy from the wind to complement solar generation is studied. Nevertheless, harvested energy is a scarce resource and needs to be used efficiently. Genetic algorithms, fuzzy logic, and common sense are used to efficiently manage energy flows within a simulated arctic weather station.
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
Citation for previous publication
D. Pimentel, P. Musilek, A. Knight, and J. Heckenbergerova, "Characterization of a Wind Flutter Generator," in Ninth International Conference on Environment and Electrical Engineering, Prague, 2010.D. Pimentel, P. Musilek, and A. Knight, "Energy Harvesting Simulation for Automatic Arctic Monitoring Stations," in IEEE Electrical Power and Energy Conference, Halifax, 2010.

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