Concurrent hydrogen and water production from brine water based on solar spectrum splitting: Process design and thermoeconomic analysis

Highlights

A new process is developed for concurrent production of hydrogen and water.

The feasibility of utilizing solar spectrum splitting system is demonstrated.

High exergy efficiencies are reached for solar hydrogen and water production system.

Abstract

This paper presents a novel process for high efficiency production of hydrogen and desalination of brine water based on the concept of solar spectrum splitting. The advantage of this system is concurrent production of hydrogen and distilled water using a sustainable process at large scale. The harvested energy from the separated solar spectral bands is used to supply the required energy for high temperature steam electrolysis and a double-stage flash distillation system. The integrated solar system is designed to reduce the energy conversion deficiencies, considerably. In order to investigate the performance of this system, a process simulation code is developed. An exergy analysis is conducted and the economic feasibility of the plant is evaluated. The sensitivity of the integrated cycle performance on solar insolation, electrolyzer temperature, and pressure is analyzed, and the results indicate that utilization of concentrator cells, with a multi-band gap mirror can increase the productivity of the cycle, drastically. It is observed that hydrogen and distilled water production rate can be increased by more than 1.6 times, when the harvested solar power increases from 28 MW to 55 MW. It is concluded that the maximum energy and exergy efficiencies of the integrated solar cycle is about 45%.

Keywords

  • Solar spectrum splitting;
  • Hydrogen;
  • Water;
  • Exergy efficiency;
  • Economic feasibility

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