The atmospheric, oceanic and terrestrial environment could be an infinite source of energy for human activity. One of the main challenge for the next century is to develop renewable energy production with a low emission of greenhouse gazes. The goal of this course is to get the basic knowledge on physics and hydrodynamics at small and intermediate scale in order to quantify the aeolian, solar or hydraulic potential of a local or regional area. Independently of the technology and its efficiency what is the available power of a given environment ?  What is the availability and the variability or the energetic resource ? How could we match the variability of the natural energetic resource to the human activity ?

This course is divided in 3  lectures and 7 working afternoon devoted to a specific project using laboratory experiments, numerical simulations or data analysis.

Lecture 1: Intro and Hydropower

  • Economical, environmental and political issues
  • Energy: definitions, units, magnitudes.
  • Water cycle, potential temperature, precipitations
  • Conventional dam: principle, efficiency, power capacity, capacity factor
  • The mean total head H, head loss, maximum flow rate and power

  • Fluvial flows: Froude number, Fluvial-torrential transition
  • Hydraulic load of a free surface flow

  • Energy and momentum conservation
  • Run of river electricity: principle, efficiency, power capacity, capacity factor

Lecture 2: Wind and solar resources

  • Wind power developpment
  • Wind resource statistical analysis, Weibull law
  • Turbulent boundary layer, Reynolds decomposition, logarithmic law
  • Atmospheric boundary layer, diurnal cycle
  • Mountain winds and see breeze
  • Radiative budget of the atmosphere
  • Optical thickness, clouds, aerosols
  • Clouds thermodynamics, potential temperature
  • Solar power systems: principle, efficiency, power capacity, capacity factor

Lecture 3: Tidal resources and energy storage

  • Tidal wave and tidal power, astronomical forcing
  • Bay or estuary resonance
  • Tidal power plant: principle, efficiency, power capacity

  • Tidal turbine: an emerging market

  • Tidal currents: variability, coastal amplification, tidal ellipses
  • Betz law for a tidal turbine

  • Tidal turbine: principle, efficiency, power capacity, strengths and drawbacks.
  • Energy storage: chemical, thermal, mechanical and gravitationnal

Numerus clausus: 25

Langue du cours : English

Credits ECTS : 4