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Electrical energy management and its impact in sub-Saharan Africa
Electrical energy is an important resource for human and economic development. On the demand side, electrical energy management is needed because of the tendency of manufacturing industries to consume large amount of energy and as a result lead them to spend more money in paying bills for the consumed electrical energy. In addition, the amount of electrical energy generated in Sub-Saharan Africa is incomparable with demand requirements. The predominant sources of electrical energy generation are fossil fuels and hydro. Generation of electricity by fossil fuel needs high capital investments and high running costs. Concurrently, the process of burning fossil fuels has an adverse effect on the environment. In order to minimize these effects, electrical energy management in manufacturing industries has to be instituted and implemented. In this research, a study has been undertaken to develop methods and strategies to be used as tools for electrical energy management in manufacturing industries and it is aimed at reducing electrical energy consumption. The research method adopted/used includes: survey of several cement industries in order to obtain current and historical electrical energy consumption, production data and to be acquainted with the methods used for energy management, measurement of electrical parameters, investigation of the use of electrical power in cement industries, analysis of power factor and power factor correction methods, analysis of energy efficiency potentials and technology used for energy saving. From the data gathered, the following were developed: strategies for the overall electrical energy management for cement plant, strategies for energy efficiency potential and technology used for energy saving, an algorithm for assessing the potential options of DSM, an algorithm for performing industrial load scheduling, an industrial energy consumption model using regression analysis technique and a Static Synchronous Compensator (STATCOM) for industrial power factor improvement. Also, a numerical analysis and computer simulation using MATLAB/Simulink were implemented. Moreover PSIM and Excel software were used in the developed energy consumption model and for the power factor improvement method. Numerical analysis and computer simulation showed that the developed STATCOM has the capability of improving and varying of power factor in accordance with the variation of plant loads, it improves power factor and reduces harmonics of the respective industries. Using the developed algorithm for assessing potentials of DSM options, it was found that, most of the energy management techniques used in manufacturing industries worldwide are not implemented in the visited industries. The developed methods and strategies can be used in improving power factor, prediction of electrical energy consumption and also for development of energy consumption benchmarking in cement industries. They can be also extended and used in mining and other manufacturing industries such as paper, textiles and this can create condition for sustainable energy management program in manufacturing industries.