Stirling cycle micro combined heat and power system to mitigate energy poverty and promote information and technology access for rural education and sustainable development purposes [article]

Jose Gabriel Egas Ortuno, University Of Canterbury
A high percentage of the world's population, those who live in poverty, can't afford reliable and safe energy sources, a condition known as energy poverty. In an attempt to satisfy their basic energy needs, light and cooking, poor people resort to biomass combustion. Biomass combustion carries a range of negative health, environmental and social consequences: millions of people die every year as a consequence of the exposure to combustion emissions, charcoal and firewood production cause
more » ... tation, the absence of grid electricity is linked to limited information and communication technology accessibility, which can lead to poor education and scarce social development opportunities. United Nations has identified energy poverty as a major obstacle to the achievement of the internationally agreed Sustainable Development Goals. In this work, an affordable, low power, biomass fed electric generator was developed and tested. The first sections of this thesis explore the means by which this electric generator could promote sustainable human development, in the contexts of poverty reduction and the prevention of excessive electronic waste and its environmental impacts. By reducing energy poverty and improving access to information and communication technology, poverty can be reduced and human development promoted. However, there are several social and environmental risks associated with increased ICT access by the poor. These risks are explored and possible mechanisms to reduce them are proposed. The second half of this thesis details the Stirling-based electric generator. The estimation of the attainable power, the selection of the machine's configuration and its general design, the calculation of the primary design variables, and the experimental results are summarized. It is shown that this technology can represent a viable way of reducing energy poverty while promoting environmentally sustainable production and consumption of electronic devices.
doi:10.26021/10216 fatcat:4edi56zwjvhgxb7czl233jq4me