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SOLPV-TES - Integrating solar PV with heat pumps and thermal energy storage in zero-energy buildings

Researcher: Jessica Settino 

Project Team: Tonio SantCyril Spiteri StainesAlexander MicallefJohn LicariChristopher MicallefMario Farrugia


Photovoltaics (PVs) are a mature and well-established technology, which has proven its potential in contributing to achieve net Zero Energy Buildings (ZEBs). According to the current practice, the electricity generated from PVs is injected into the grid. However, in a scenario of high PV market penetration, the high amounts of injected real power could cause overvoltage events which can jeopardize the stability of the grid.

The project aims at investigating reliable and economically feasible alternatives for electricity, heating and cooling production in nearly Zero Energy Buildings (ZEB). A novel design, integrating PV with storage systems, will be identified to ensure a more flexible operation in a microgrid scenario. The proposed design should guarantee, through the optimization of the overall system operation, the possibility to improve the energy use, shifting the electricity consumption towards period of low energy demand and reducing the amount of electricity injected into the grid in periods of high solar radiation.

An energy management system has a central role in collecting, analyzing data and learning the building occupants' habit to provide the best system operation and schedule of the activities. The main objectives of this project are:

  • Development of a fully integrated system;
  • Design of a smart energy management system;
  • Optimize the system for Central Mediterranean Conditions; 
  • Compare the proposed system with an equivalent one based on battery storage;
  • Assess its impact on the Maltese energy supply system



IEPC Microgrids Research on 'Engineering Today'
An article on Microgrid research by the Dept. of IEPC at the University of Malta was featured in issue 56 (April 2017) of 'Engineering Today', the Chamber of Engineers' quarterly magazine. 
Expression of Interest: Pursue Research with IEPC
Interested in pursuing research in Electrical and Electronic Engineering? Read this notice for further info. 
Internships - D3 Power Generation Ltd
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Last Updated: 20 March 2017

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