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Who I Am

I am above all human. I am probably a very random one. Born in Belgrade, an Iranian citizen (the only citizenship I have... ie I'm not American or Canadian), spent half my life in Tehran, the other half in New York State suburbs, did my undergrad in the City University of New York (in NYC), and now I am living in Kingston, Canada...


I received a bachelor of engineering in Mechanical Engineering at the City University of New York and am currently engaged in a Master's of Applied Science at Queen's University with Professor Joshua Pearce in the Mechanical and Materials Engineering Department. I primarily work on photovoltaic systems, but deal with many issues related in applied sustainability and social justice in engineering. I've either taught or TA'd the following: statics, renewable energy system design, computer aided design, social justice in engineering, and most recently appropriate technology.


While I have done a degree in mechanical engineering, I have gradually gained interest in the social aspects of technology during my involvement with Engineers Without Borders-USA, the UNDP, and the Earth Institute. There was a time where aerospace was my number one choice, but unfortunately a person of my status (read Iranian) faces many obstacles in pursuing such a career path. I am more content now in understanding the relationship between society and technology, my heavy involvement in student politics, and social activism.

Main Research Topic: Technical Viability of PV+CHP Hybrid Systems[edit]

  1. Introduction   (Dec 31st, 2009)
        1. Energy landscape of Iran (%s of fuel, costs, future plans), Iran's energy policy
        2. Utility grid, transmission losses, power outages, how owned operated, net metering, grid tying, distributed generation
        3. What are aspects of technical optimization are important in Iran – Mehdi (CHP expert), profs. In energy, factory owners, UNDP, IEA)
  2. Methodology    (February 15, 2010)
        1. Numerical simulation of solar PV output, CHP output, hybrid system, data from load profiles (may have develop self for different regions and applications – HDD and CDD)
        2. Accuracy of PV simulation paper
        3. Numerical system primarily as energy model
        4. Case study of A) 5 unit apartment complex, B) Hospital, C) Industrial – (gasket industry, biomedical equipment, cement factory, D) small detached home – mechanical, electrical and energy design
  3. Systems        (June 1st, 2010)
        1. individual home
        2. apartment
        3. hospital
        4. gasket factory
  4. Results        (July 15th, 2010)  
        1. individual home
        2. apartment
        3. hospital
        4. gasket
  5. Discussion – cultural appropriateness, geographic distribution, national impact, social context, economics (August 30th, 2009)
  6. Management of Innovation  (October 1st, 2010)
  7. Conclusions (September 15th, 2010)
  8. References

Thesis Literature Review[edit]

Carmeli, M. S. , Castelli-Dezza, F. , Marchegiani, G., Mauri, M., Piegari, L., Rosati, D., 2009 Hybrid PV-CHP Distributed System: design aspects and realization. IEEE Xplore

  • Abstract: The use of distributed generating systems, which use a renewable energy source, has experienced a fast development. Moreover their intermittent nature can be overcome using hybrid systems which combine more energy sources. This paper discusses a full experience in the realization of a hybrid plant which uses an internal combustion engine with cogeneration/trigeneration functionalities and solar source, installed in Delebio, Italy. System design aspects, with particular attention to the possible topologies and power flow control strategies are analyzed. After the analysis of design aspects, some simulation are presented to validate the proposed solution and finally experimental results of the real plant are reported.

Muselli, M., Notton, G., Louche, A., 1999. Design of hybrid-photovoltaic power generator, with optimization of energy management. Solar Energy 65 (3), 143–157.

Wies, R.W., Johnson, R.A., Agrawal, A.N., Chubb, T.J., 2004. Economic analysis and environmental impacts of a PV with Diesel-battery system for remote villages. IEEE General meeting of Power Engineering. June 2004. Denver, Colorado, USA.

Ashari, M., Nayar, C.V., 1999. An optimum dispatch strategy using set points for a photovoltaic (PV)-Diesel-battery hybrid power system. Solar Energy 66 (1), 1–9.

Seeling-Hochmuth, G.C., 1997. A combined optimization concept for the design and operation strategy of hybrid-PV energy systems. Solar Energy 61 (2), 77–87.

  • Abstract: This paper presents a method to jointly determine the sizing and operation control of PV-hybrid systems.

Goldberg, D.E., 1989. Genetic Algorithms in Search, Optimization and Machine Learning. Addison-Wesley, New York.

Green, H.J., Manwell, J., 1995. HYBRID2—A versatile model of the performance of hybrid power systems. In: Proceedings of WindPower_95, Washington DC. 27–30 March, 1995.

Manwell, J.F., McGowan, J.G., 1993. Lead acid battery storage model for hybrid energy systems. Solar Energy 50, 399–405.

Barley, C.D., Winn, C.B., Flowers, L., Green, H.J., 1995. Optimal control of remote hybrid power systems, Part I: simplified model. In: Proceedings of WindPower_95, Washington DC. 27–30 March, 1995.

Ohsawa, Y., Emurd, S., Arai, K., 1993. Optimal operation of photovoltaic/Diesel power generation system by neural network, In: Proceedings of the Second International Forum on Applications of Neural Networks to Power Systems, 1993. ANNPS _93., 19–22 April 1993. pp. 99– 103.

  • Abstract: In this paper an artificial neural network is applied to the operation control of the photovoltaic/diesel hybrid power generation system. The optimal operation patterns of the
    diesel generator are calculated by dynamic programming (DP) under tlie known insolation and load demand, which minimize the fuel consumption of the diesel generator. These opt imal patterns are learned by the three layers neural network, aird it is tested for the different. insolation and demand data from those used in the learning. Two kinds of neural networks are examined, and the results are compared with each other.

Seeling-Hochmuth, G.C., 1998. Optimisation of hybrid energy systems sizing and operation control. A dissertation presented to the University of Kassel in Candidacy for the Degree of Dr.-Ing. El-Hefnawi, Said H., 1998. Photovoltaic Diesel-generator hybrid power system sizing. Renewable Energy 13 (1), 33–40.

  • Abstract: This research aims to minimize the cost of the PV system according to minimization of the PV array area and storage battery. In this paper, a new method is used to calculate the minimum number of storage days and the minimum PV array area. The pre-operating time of the diesel-generator is also incorporated in our system design, A system sizing program using FORTRAN language is developed, The program is used to size our experimental system which consists of a PV system, storage subsystem and dieselgenerator. The proposed sizing program can be used to size any system. A comparison between stand-alone and hybrid system sizing is presented in this paper.

Hybrid Power Design Handbook

Novel wind/diesel /battery hybrid energy system.

International Energy Agency, Perfomance Assessment of Prototype Residential Cogeneration Systems in Single Detached Houses in Canada

  • Provides an overview of thermal and electric efficiencies of Stirling Engine, and Solid Oxide Fuel Cell engine cogenerators.

Chicco, G. (2006) From Cogeneration to Trigeneration, IEEE Transactions on Energy Conversion

  • Trigeneration refers to the combined production of electricity, heat, and cooling. In a competitive energy market framework, the adoption of CombinedHeat, Cooling, and Power (CHCP)plants may become profitable with respect to traditional systems, where electricity, heat, and cooling are produced or purchased separately. This paper illustrates and evaluates the possible benefits of adopting different trigeneration alternatives in the design of a new energy system, with the specific focus on comparing different cooling production solutions. For the cooling side of CHCP systems, most of the literature refers to absorption groups fed by cogenerated thermal energy. Here, the trigeneration concept is extended to also include conventional electric chillers, heat pumps,or direct-fired absorption chillers. Comparative analysis of the trigeneration solutions is carried out for a hospital site, by performing time-domain simulations to characterize the out-of-design operation and different regulation strategies of the equipment. Poor effectiveness of using classical energy efficiency indices is discussed. A more effective economic analysis, where buying/selling electricity in a competitive market is specifically considered, is then performed. Finally, a multiscenario analysis is carried out for assessing the impact of electricity and gas price variations on the choice of the most convenient trigeneration solution.

Swan, L.G., Ugursal, I.V., Beausolil-Morrison, I. (2009) A database of house descriptions representative of Canadian housing stock for coupling to building energy performance simulation. Journal of Building Performance Simulation

  • The development of a simulation tool that can accurately characterize the energy performance of the Canadian housing stock would enable detailed studies to predict the impact of energy saving upgrades and technologies on a national scale. Such a tool requires a detailed database of house descriptions that collectively represent the entire housing stock. Such a database has been assembled by selectively extracting measured and observed data collected by professionals who conducted on-site audits of 200,000 houses. The auditors’ data were extracted to statistically match key parameters (location, house type, vintage, geometry and heating system) with a broad-based random survey of the Canadian stock. The result is a database comprised of nearly 17,000 detailed records of singledetached, double and row houses. Each of these house records represents *500 houses in the Canadian stock and contains sufficient data to enable the accurate characterization of its energy performance through building performance simulation.