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  • Muriel Emmeline Watt
Muriel Emmeline Watt

Muriel Emmeline Watt
UNSW Sydney | UNSW · School of Photovoltaic and Renewable Energy Engineering

BSc, BSc (Hons), PhD

About

69
Publications
10,832
Reads
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923
Citations
Citations since 2016
5 Research Items
466 Citations
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2016201720182019202020212022020406080
2016201720182019202020212022020406080
2016201720182019202020212022020406080
Additional affiliations
May 2004 - present
UNSW Sydney
Position
  • Policy Specialist, SPREE

Publications

Publications (69)
Presentation
Full-text available
Access to electricity is a priority within the United Nation’s sustainable development goals. Among rural electrification options in off-grid areas of developing countries, community renewable energy (CRE) initiatives have the potential to a) allow better community integration and engagement; b) increase user education and level of satisfaction wit...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Community-based rural electrification initiatives have the potential to overcome some of the barriers to providing modern energy services in off-grid areas in developing countries, especially those barriers relating to social integration of renewable energy technologies, end-user education and local maintenance capabilities. However, experience to...
Chapter
The remarkable growth in deployment of grid-connected photovoltaics (PV) in recent years has, in large part, been driven by its rapidly improving economics. System costs have fallen almost fourfold in some markets over the past five years. The future success of the technology will, however, depend on the value that it can contribute toward deliveri...
Conference Paper
Pacific Islands are at the forefront of the trend towards high or even 100% renewable energy penetration of their electricity grids. Many have been highly or totally reliant on imported diesel fuel, with associated price uncertainties and GDP impacts. Countries like Fiji are highly reliant on hydro power and become vulnerable in periods of low rain...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Minigrids are expected by the UN Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) initiative to play a significant role in ensuring universal energy access. Despite this, there are a range of technical, organisational, social and financial barriers to their successful deployment, including lack of community integration, unrealistic user expectations and poor lo...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In Australia, PV uptake has increased rapidly, with around 20% of households now owning a system, and Electric vehicle (EV) deployment may increase markedly over the coming decade. While there is growing discussion of the implications of these developments, the focus has generally been on the impacts on households deploying these options, not on th...
Conference Paper
Although in many areas, only electricity industry approvals are required for PV installations, in others, Development Applications (DAs) through local Councils are required. In the latter case, the PV industry, and hence customers, may experience delays, application costs, additional insurance and solar access uncertainties when trying to install e...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Monitoring of photovoltaic systems is required for the detection of operational issues, and to compare the performance of different systems across a range of technologies and climates. Performance and reliability data can therefore facilitate appropriate system design and technology choice, and in the long term, establish credible expectations abou...
Article
A reliable, accessible and comprehensive guide for students of photovoltaic applications and renewable energy engineering. This thoroughly considered textbook from a group of leading influential and award-winning authors is brimming with information and is carefully designed to meet the needs of its readers. Along with exercises and references at t...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In Australia, as electricity prices have increased, driven mainly by increases in peak demand, electricity use has decreased every year since 2008/09. The factors most responsible for these decreases include increased electricity costs, energy efficiency, solar water heaters and photovoltaics. Further increases in electricity prices and uptake of t...
Article
The new edition of this thoroughly considered textbook provides a reliable, accessible and comprehensive guide for students of photovoltaic applications and renewable energy engineering. Written by a group of award-winning authors it is brimming with information and is carefully designed to meet the needs of its readers.
Article
Full-text available
The wide-scale implementation of energy efficiency and renewable energy measures by local governments can make a significant contribution to reductions in national greenhouse gas emissions, thereby engendering both financial and environmental benefits. This paper describes an integrated approach to residential sector sustainable energy policy devel...
Article
Distributed generation is being deployed at increasing levels of penetration on electricity grids worldwide. It can have positive impacts on the network, but also negative impacts if integration is not properly managed. This is especially true of photovoltaics, in part because it's output fluctuates significantly and in part because it is being rap...
Article
Growth in peak period electricity demand has driven the requirement for a significant expansion of Sydney's electricity network. Energy efficiency and demand management activities in office buildings may be an alternative to electricity network augmentation, with significant economic and environmental benefits. This paper identifies and characteris...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The PV Rebate Program (now the Solar Homes and Communities Program) operated from 2000 to mid 2009. Over this time, more than 40,000 PV systems were installed, about half of which were installed in the first half of 2009, and about a quarter of which were in NSW. This paper presents analysis of the characteristics of NSW PV rebate recipients, using...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Australia leads the world in some areas of photovoltaic technology development, yet current innovation system limitations have seen local innovation overtaken by more rapid international development, or local product development moving offshore for commercialisation. Innovation is traditionally viewed as a linear progression through phases of early...
Article
This paper presents an analysis of the potential impact of integrating photovoltaics (PV) into the Western Australian electricity networks. It uses real-time load and Australian Bureau of Meteorology climate data to assess PV's ability to reduce peak generation requirements, defer network augmentation, reduce line losses and reduce the cost of conv...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Low quality charge controllers and lamps are common sources of failure in solar home systems in developing countries. It is often assumed that components manufactured at a small scale in developing countries are of lower quality than imported ones. On the other hand, a number of authors have suggested that small-scale, local manufacture has the pot...
Article
Full-text available
For many years, the photovoltaics (PV) community has relied on the concept of energy payback time (EPT) as a means of quantifying the ratio of energy generated from a PV panel or system over its lifetime, compared to the energy that was required to fabricate it. Few other energy technologies are so judged and this paper argues that the EPT concept...
Article
Australia has had an active photovoltaic device research and development program for the past 30 years, with more sporadic interest shown in photovoltaic systems, components and markets. Exciting new developments continue to come out of Australian research laboratories, yet many are commercialized elsewhere and local deployment now lags behind that...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper investigates the potential impact and sustainability of the manufacture of PV modules and balance of systems components at a small-scale in developing countries. Experiences of small-scale manufacture from case studies in India and Nicaragua are presented and analysed. The potential of local manufacture to contribute to local livelihoods...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The level of interest in nuclear power has significantly increased over the last few years, both internationally and more recently, in Australia. The Prime Minister announced the establishment of a Prime Ministerial Taskforce to undertake an objective, scientific and comprehensive review into uranium mining, processing and the contribution of nucle...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
A framework for analysis of the potential impact and viability of the manufacture of photovoltaic systems components in developing countries is presented. At the small-scale, the potential of local manufacture to contribute to local livelihoods, and to have positive synergies that improve the installation, maintenance and use of PV systems for rura...
Article
Full-text available
Over 6 MW of grid-connected PV has now been installed in Australia. Most of this is on individual homes across the country and purchased directly by the home owners or, in cases such as the Newington Solar Village, pre-installed as part of the house design. This paper reports on consumer experiences, costs and actual PV performance from several res...
Article
Full-text available
Greenhouse emissions from Australia's electricity sector are projected to increase and inequitably contribute to global climate change emissions. Development of a least-cost abatement portfolio of technologies on both the supply and demand sides is necessary to reduce emissions. On the supply side, this portfolio will include a diverse range of tec...
Article
Full-text available
Electricity demand has increased rapidly in Australia over the past decade, accompanied by a significant shift to summer peaks, driven largely by increased air conditioner usage. Recent summer peaks in several States have resulted in supply disruptions and, on some occasions, extremely high spot prices on the National Electricity Market. This is no...
Article
Full-text available
Australia has a relatively well established photovoltaics industry servicing mainly the off-grid residential and industrial markets. It also has a good export market for cells, modules and systems. The international market has been growing rapidly over recent years, driven mainly by large grid connect programs operating in Japan and Europe. This pa...
Article
Despite efforts in Australia and other developed countries, greenhouse gas emissions from most countries continue to rise and the targets set in 1997 for emission reductions in the Kyoto Protocol are becoming more difficult to achieve. Without coordinated policy development and successful policy implementation, there is a chance that the major play...
Article
The Sydney 2000 Olympic Games incorporates an athlete's village which is part of a larger new residential development called Newington, aimed at creating a practical example of more sustainable living for the 21st century. Newington has a range of environmental features including solar hot water, solar photovoltaics, energy efficient design and wat...
Article
This paper addresses the air emissions of grid supply versus grid-connected and off-grid photovoltaic power generation, using the framework of life-cycle assessment, in the context of rural household energy supply in Australia. Emissions of carbon dioxide, sulphur dioxide and nitrous oxides are calculated for the three life-cycle stages of manufact...
Article
: This paper compares grid supply with grid connected and stand-alone photovoltaic power generation using the framework of Life Cycle Assessment, in the context of household energy supply in Australia. Life Cycle Analysis offers a holistic methodology for analysing the environmental burdens of each household energy supply option over its entire lif...
Conference Paper
For a vast, sparsely populated continent like Australia, effective remote area telecommunications, power supplies, navigation aids and transport route signalling are critical and expensive. PV provides an attractive alternative to diesel and central grid supplies for maintaining these links. Over the last 10 years, another PV market has developed i...
Conference Paper
This paper reports the findings of a recent survey of remote area residents concerning their experiences with PV based off-grid power systems and grid supply. Continued advances in off-grid systems would seem to make them an increasingly cost effective and `grid equivalent' alternative for remote areas. While economic studies of the two supply opti...
Article
Studies have been made of the needs, current practice and future prospects for power supply to off-grid areas in the State of New South Wales, Australia. These studies have included a consideration of both the technical and financial aspects of available equipment. At present, it has been found that costs of traditional stand-alone power generation...
Article
Australia is generally considered to be both an energy-rich country, and one with the potential to feed far more than its own small population. However, the adoption of an energy-intensive food system has endangered long-term productive capacity and created a food system which is extremely vulnerable to energy supply changes.In the current food sys...
Article
Full-text available
Until the last decade, peak electricity loads in Australia were mostly in winter. In many States peaks are now in summer and are growing rapidly, with one of the main contributing factors being the increase in use of air conditioning. South Australia has the "peakiest" load pattern. The ratio of average to peak load in South Australia has fallen fr...
Article
Full-text available
Along with the environmental, energy security and poverty concerns driving the rapid growth of renewable energy worldwide, there is an increasing recognition of the investment and job creation opportunities arising from this growth. Here we present some findings of an Australian CRC for Renewable Energy (ACRE) study into the development and employm...
Article
Full-text available
Whilst photovoltaics (PV) is an increasingly popular technology for residential application, PV ouput is often better matched to commercial load patterns. This has ramifications for both placement of PV and for support policies. Commercial buildings provide the potential for larger scale PV installations which in turn can be valuable in stimulating...
Article
Full-text available
Although new government and utility programs around the world have begun to assist renewables in a number of ways, the major thrust continues to be on short-term subsidies, posing the danger of destabilising immature industries by leading to "boom and bust" cycles. On the other hand, the critical problems facing renewables lie with market distortio...
Article
Australia has played an active role over the last 3 decades in the development of the international photovoltaics (PV) industry. Australia has been involved in pioneering research, manufacturing and application of PV, and more recently has led the world in PV education, training and standards development. Over the last decade, the global PV market...
Article
Environmental regulation in a restructured electricity industry must be compatible with competition yet still effective in meeting environmental objectives despite the industry's complexity. Since 1995, electricity retailers in New South Wales (NSW) have been subject to a licence condition designed to reduce per-capita climate change emissions asso...
Article
Under the Commonwealth Government's PV Rebate Program (PVRP), over 2000 grid-connected PV systems have been installed. It is useful to assess the cost-effectiveness of the systems, as well as how customers might maximize their return on investment. This paper reports on a study of rooftop PV system value to residential customers, depending on the e...
Article
Full-text available
Summary There is a growing awareness of the severe environmental and ecosystem impacts associated with the use of fossil fuels, nuclear power, and large hydro systems. These impacts include land, water, and air pollution, widespread habitat destruction, as well as increasing evidence of links between fossil fuel use and climate change due to global...
Article
Full-text available
The sustainability of renewable energy projects cannot be taken for granted, as illustrated by the controversial projects such as the Three Gorges Hydro Scheme in China, the ill-fated Gordon Below Franklin hydro scheme in Tasmania and the stalled development of land-based wind farms in the UK. While these are extreme cases, similar factors are at p...
Article
Full-text available
Renewable energy systems are not necessarily always sustainable. While renewable energy has a high level of community support, some of the most bitter public debates in Australia have centred around proposed hydro, biomass and wind projects. Many renewable energy technologies are now mature, yet renewable energy generally has yet to be widely accep...

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Projects

Projects (2)
Project
Comparative study of community energy projects for rural electrificacion in Panama, Nicaragua and Costa Rica. Further comparative analysis will be done with other experiences in Subsaharian Africa and Asia Pacific to better understand the challenges and oportunities for future community energy initiatives in developing countries.