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Title: Analysis and Simulation of a Blue Energy Cycle

The mixing process of fresh water and seawater releases a significant amount of energy and is a potential source of renewable energy. The so called ‘blue energy’ or salinity-gradient energy can be harvested by a device consisting of carbon electrodes immersed in an electrolyte solution, based on the principle of capacitive double layer expansion (CDLE). In this study, we have investigated the feasibility of energy production based on the CDLE principle. Experiments and computer simulations were used to study the process. Mesoporous carbon materials, synthesized at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, were used as electrode materials in the experiments. Neutron imaging of the blue energy cycle was conducted with cylindrical mesoporous carbon electrodes and 0.5 M lithium chloride as the electrolyte solution. For experiments conducted at 0.6 V and 0.9 V applied potential, a voltage increase of 0.061 V and 0.054 V was observed, respectively. From sequences of neutron images obtained for each step of the blue energy cycle, information on the direction and magnitude of lithium ion transport was obtained. A computer code was developed to simulate the process. Experimental data and computer simulations allowed us to predict energy production.
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  1. Georgia Inst. of Technology, Atlanta, GA (United States)
  2. Prairie View A & M Univ., Prairie View, TX (United States)
  3. Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Renewable Energy
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 91; Journal ID: ISSN 0960-1481
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States). High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR)
Sponsoring Org:
Work for Others (WFO); USDOE Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) Program
Country of Publication:
United States