Energy systems analysis and planning: Previous projects

These projects took place before 2012: 

  • Open energy database

    Client: SANERI

    Period: September 2009–September 2011

    Project leader: Brett Cohen

    Others in project team: Bruno Merven, Ajay Trikam, Alison Hughes

    The project aims to provide a current, consistent and comprehensive data set to help streamline energy research projects, particularly those involving energy modelling. Data will be collated from a wide range of websites, publications and research reports. The resulting database will be publicly accessible.

  • Transport sector demand for liquid fuels

    Client: SANERI

    Period: July 2009–July 2011

    Project leader: Brett Cohen

    Others in project team: Bruno Merven

    The majority of liquid fuels projection focus on the supply side and assume a growth in demand based on historical figures and projections of GDP and population. The study aims to explore likely growth based on disaggregation of demand for transport services, including both passenger and freight services

  • Awareness and behavioural energy tools

    Client: Eskom

    Period: October 2010-December 2011

    Project leader: Stephen Davis

    Others in project team: Brett Cohen and others

    This project will develop tools to enhance understanding of energy-use behaviour and to build awareness of energy and energy efficiency in the residential sector. This is an interdisciplinary study, involving collaboration with specialist skills and knowledge.both within ERC and outside the organisation. Phase 1, which reviewed existing tools and the literature in the field and also included a stakeholder workshop, is now completed; a report has been delivered to Eskom and is under review. Phase 2, now underway, will involve the investigation, development and testing of tools which can help effect behavioural change amongst consumers.

  • Long-term mitigation scenarios update

    Client: Department of Environmental Affairs

    Period: Phase 1: November 2010–March 2011. Phase 2 began in February 2011.

    Project leaders: Alison Hughes, Andrew Marquard

    This project (a joint one with the Climate Change group) aims at improving and updating the SA government supported Long Term Mitigation Scenarios Project. Phase 1 involves updating the data of the already-existing model to base year 2006, and improving model definition for some sectors.

  • Techno-economic analysis of carbon capture and storage in Southern Africa

    Client: World Bank

    Period: December 2010–April 2011

    Project leader:  Alison Hughes

    Others in project team: Catherine Fedorsky, Brett Cohen, Bruno Merven

    The project aims to assess the costs of various opportunities for carbon capture and storage (for emissions from electricity generation) in South Africa, Botswana, Namibia and Mozambique. It is being done in collaboration with two other organisations - Energy Institute Hrvoje Poza (EIHP) in Croatia,which is looking at similar issue in the Balkan countries, and the Flemish Institute for Technological Research (VITO) in Belgium, which is doing the costing. A local stakeholder workshop will be held to present the findings related to South Africa, and a final report delivered to the World Bank

  • Modelling a domestic energy system based on biomass energy in rural areas in southern Africa (Biomodels)

    Client: VW Foundation

    Project leader: Alison Hughes

    This project is aimed at modelling a domestic energy system based on biomass, with a rural area in South Africa as a case study.

  • Cape Town long-term mitigation scenarios

    Client: City of Cape Town

    Project leader: Alison Hughes

    This project involves translating the national long-term mitigation scenarios to the city level

  • Distribution systems and distribution planning related research: Holistic energy model for low income communities (HEMLIC)

    Client:  Eskom

    Period: July 2005 - July 2008

    Project leader: Trevor Gaunt (Electrical Engineering – UCT)

    Project team: Trevor Gaunt (Project leader), Mark Howells, Bill Cowan, Markus Dekena Consulting

    The scope of work involves research on the following topics:

    • Non domestic electrification load models,
    • Demand side management (DSM) load models for distribution planning,
    • Modular data loggers,
    • Participation in the Cigré SC-C6 working groups,
    • Network reliability and the costs of customer interruptions,
    • Multi-source energy models,
    • Other techniques in electricity delivery network analysis, planning and systems
  • Measuring the rebound effect of energy efficiency initiatives for the future

    Client:  SANERI

    Period: April 2007- March 2010

    Project team: Alison Hughes, Kate Louw

    The project intends to develop a model to predict the levels of rebound that occur when energy efficiency measures are introduced into the residential sector, which will enable better targeting of energy efficiency interventions within this sector. This is due, largely, to the impact that residential demand has on the grid during 'peak' times.

    As there has been little research of this nature both in a developing country context, and within South Africa, an in-depth study solely of the residential sector has been proposed.  Given previous experience and knowledge, it is expected that the rebound effect will be at a moderate level (Berkhout et al, 2000; Roy, 2000).  However, it is hypothesised that this can be mitigated and mitigated and maintained are contradictory you need to add some words here before maintained thereafter maintained through education and technology training programmes.  Data obtained during the study will be incorporated into the model to give, an indication of what DSM programmes in the residential sector may be expected to achieve. This will help with integrated resource planning in South Africa as it will enable a more accurate DSM target to be included. As we are currently facing electricity shortages DSM is becoming increasingly important in ensuring reliable electricity supply.

    The key research questions to be answered by the study are:

    • What are the rebound effects of energy efficiency measures in residential settings across South Africa?
    • Are these mitigated and maintained by education programmes and technology learning?

    Anecdotal evidence also suggests that whilst there is willingness for consumers to utilise energy efficient technology certain inhibiting factors such as initial cost of purchasing the technology and inherent characteristics of the technology such as power produced (in the case of solar home systems) and quality of light produced (for CFLs) prevent larger uptake or continued use of these technologies. 

    Due to the nature of the study (i.e. a panel study conducted over the period of 3 years) one will also be able to answer questions as to the extent that households continue to use these technologies and determine exactly which factors inhibit the continued use of these technologies.

  • Securing the energy future of South Africa through modelling

    Client: CSIR

    Duration: June 2007- December 2007

    Project leader: Ajay Trikam

    This project explores, through a scenario-based approach, future energy demand and the resultant environmental implications

  • Biomass energy in rural areas in southern Africa

    Client: VW

    Project leader: Alison Hughes

    This is a collaborative project in which the ERC is one of five project partners. The project aims to develop existing rural energy-economic system models in order to capture user preferences and changing biomass resources.

  • Gauteng: Integrated energy plan

    Client: SANERI

    Duration: 1 April 2008 – 31 July 2009

    Project leader: Ajay Trikam

    A study into pathways of sustainable transformation of the Gauteng megacity.

  • Free electricity grants and household consumption

    Project leaders: Stephen Davis & Alison Hughes

    The project uses combined data from the national load research database in two sites, in combination with a socio-economic survey, to determine the impact of Free basic electricity grants on the household energy consumption patterns