CHAPTER drive turbines that generate electric power which



In physics, energy is the property that must
be transferred to an object in order to perform work on, or to heat, the
object. The need for energy on earth is growing each day with the growth in
population. To satisfy the populations needs there has been the trend where
factories and firms are setups to produce
necessary products to ensure the survival for everyone, with the treat on our
planet by global warming these factories and firms have had to play it safe
with the move to use renewable energy such as wind,
hydropower, biofuels and solar among others, with all these alternatives
there has been need to include a software aspect to assist in the production,
transmission and supply of the power

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2.1 Research design

In order to get a comprehensive and a
qualitative research, I used a journal and online materials as the main means
of carrying out my research in an attempt of getting a comprehensive statistics
on how software engineering plays a role in the renewable energy sector.

In Kenya,
the most common renewable energy sources are hydroelectric power, wind,
geothermal and solar.

Hydroelectric power, the power of water
pressure is used to drive turbines that generate electric power which is
injected into the national power grid to
satisfy the intense need for power in the thriving Kenyan economy

geothermal energy accounts for 20% of the total
installed capacity of the Kenyan grid. Kenya is the first African country to
tap geothermal power and the largest producer of geo-energy, harnessing power
from steam released by hot rocks beneath the Rift valley. The abundant sun and
wind are also being harnessed in a variety of projects: of these, the Lake Turkana project is the most
audacious, both because of the scale and the location

Wind power in Kenya
contributes only a small amount of the country’s electrical power. However, its
share in energy production is increasing. Kenya aims to generate 2,036 MW of
wind power, or 9% of the country’s total capacity, by 2030Kenya has one major
wind farm, Ngong Hills Wind Farm, located in Ngong, Kajiado County. It produces
around 5.1 MW of electricity. It is owned by Kenya Electricity Generating
Company (KenGen) and cost KES 1.6 billion to construct.

Geothermal power is very cost-effective in
the Great Rift Valley of Kenya, East Africa. Kenya was the first
African country to build geothermal energy
sources. The Kenya Electricity Generating Company, which is 74% state-owned,
has built three plants to exploit the Olkaria geothermal resource, Olkaria
I (195 MW), Olkaria II (105 MW) and Olkaria
IV (150 MW, 75 MW Wellhead generation plants, with a third private plant Olkaria
III (139 MW). Additionally, a pilot wellhead plant of 2.5 MW has been
commissioned at Eburru and two small-scale
plants have been built by the Oserian Development Company to power their rose
farm facilities with a total of 4 MW. Kenya currently has 636 MW of installed
geothermal capacity.

Kenya is gearing up for a significant surge
in the use of solar energy after the government started enforcing regulations
that would see the installation of water
heating systems in residential buildings.

In a renewed drive in favor of clean energies
and reduced reliance on hydro and thermal energy, Kenya will from this month
enforce regulations requiring property developers to install and use solar
water heating systems.

The regulations are part of efforts to
implement a green economy strategy towards sustainable development. Under the strategy, the country hopes to reduce carbon
dioxide emissions by as much as 15 percent
by 2030.

2.2 Case Study


Integration of software engineering into
renewable energy system presents an
important step in the future of software development for sustainability and
renewability of energy.  As Renewable Energy needs and requirements get
complicated, Software Engineering methodologies and techniques become more
important for the development of successful renewable energy software.  On
the other hand, the software development lifecycle
must incorporate important issues relevant to sustainability and renewability
of energy such as sustainability requirements, energy and environmental standards,
integration and interoperability issues, quality and safety issues, best
practices issues, economic feasibility
issues which include

Capturing sustainability requirements
Software requirements
Computer-aided design tools
Software testing and validation tools
Software quality assurance
Embedded programming
Integration and interoperability of software.
Human-Computer Interface for renewable energy.

I researched on the various issues by asking reviewing
and asking different firms on how they have applied the various aspects into
their systems.



2.2.1 Capturing
sustainability requirements


Through the application of software
engineering for renewable energy systems allows for the acquiring and capturing
of the best and most important requirements needed to build and maintain a
sustainable energy source and energy generation system.


2.2.2 Software


There are
software systems used in the energy
sector, some complex others simple requirements for this software are well collected by use of the best existing
software requirements gathering techniques.

Computer-aided design tools


In order to develop the hardware part of the
renewable energy systems, there is need
to design the systems depending on the area of application and the source of
energy chosen, computer-aided design tools such as CAD are used to achieve the
best alternatives.

2.2.4 Software
testing and validation tools

To easily ensure that the renewable energy systems work efficiently,
there is need to test and check the system for risks of malfunctions, here
software testing and validation tools come into place to help satisfy this

2.2.5 Software quality assurance

Testing for the quality of
a system is a necessity especially if it to produce desired results and where
there are quality software and hardware the system has a very low probability of failing.

2.2.6 Embedded programming

There are embedded systems
integrated inside the larger system that need programmed systems to ensure they
react in a timely manner and give the needed output.

2.2.7 Integration and interoperability of software.

Integration and
interoperability are where data from
different systems is well relayed to another system to ensure the two systems
work together to achieve a single task. Softwares work to achieve this.

Human-Computer Interface for renewable

To easily and
efficiently communicate with the renewable energy systems there is need for
great application of human-computer
interface which would not be possible without the creation of easy to use user
interface, through designing and development using software tools  


2.3 Data Analysis

The major finding of this research
establishes that the application and use of software engineering profession and
tools plays a major role in the development and maintenance of sustainable
renewable energy systems. Software engineering takes care of software part
which includes;

Management information systems

Decision support systems

Geographical Information Systems (GIS)

Database systems

Data mining

Data visualization

Security systems

Knowledge discovery and dissemination

Microprocessor-based systems

Signal processing

Operating systems

Electronic/mobile learning





Renewable energy systems are playing a great
roll in the achieving of the strategic goals of the vision 2030 of Kenya.
Software engineering is a fast-growing
area of study and is playing a great part in the support of different areas of
governance, education, transport, but the
main concern today is applied to the
renewable energy sector,

A few companies in Kenya have applied
software engineering aspects to implement their systems in local households.

M-KOPA is the world’s leading ‘pay-as-you-go’
energy provider to off-grid homes. The
company has developed a better way to provide affordable, safe and clean energy
to millions of people living off the grid. This company has integrated embedded
subsystems into their larger system to
ensure one can use their solar systems as long as they pay the fee required.

KenGen, Kenya’s largest power generating company
has very well used necessary aspects and tool provided by software engineering
to implement their renewable energy systems to supply and distribute electric




4.1 Impact of software engineering for renewable energy systems


The following are some of the positive
impacts integration of software engineering for renewable energy systems

Capturing sustainability requirements.

are acquired fast and are the best to achieve optimum sustainability.

Software requirements.

With great software requirements, there is believe that the hardware system will also
have great output.

Computer-aided design tools.

With well-designed
systems, there is assurance of very low

Software testing and validation tools.

Well tested software to run the energy
systems ensures that the system is at maximum capacity and safety is still

Software quality assurance

When software that runs a system is of high
quality we can achieve high results from the hardware systems integrated with
the software

Embedded programming

Embedded system program using software
engineering techniques ensures great reaction to aspects of the environment and
ensures fast repair or adjusting.

Integration and interoperability of software.

When the different subsystems communicate efficiently there is sunny, thus greater output.

4.2. Issues that arise when implementing software engineering to renewable
energy systems

It may be
expensive to integrate software aspects for renewable energy systems especially
for large systems because most of the software is
tailored to a specific energy source.

programmers really familiar with renewable energy systems might be hard

Quick response
to new political decisions and their impact on markets and technology:
previously rarely used technologies such as HVDC can suddenly become very much
in demand and suppliers require tremendous increases in engineering efficiency

Maintenance of
software aspect may be expensive.

Norms and
standards are not yet established in this area and changes are likely. Anyone
who wants to respond quickly to such a
situation should not have to revise documents manually.

The complex HVDC
converters require an engineering tool that acts flexibly in an unlimited
manner with regard to the structures and relationships between objects.



After great research and discovery than
renewable energy is the next great step to save earth from global warming and
to the future we are moving toward to there is need to create smart systems to
handle every aspect of the renewable energy systems, these software systems
will be responsible for Management information systems

Decision support systems

Geographical Information Systems (GIS)

Database systems

Data mining

Data visualization

Security systems

Knowledge discovery and dissemination

Microprocessor-based systems

Signal processing

Operating systems

Electronic/mobile learning

My recommendation is we fully embrace and
promote the use of software engineering in the implementation of the renewable
energy systems to ensure sustainable energy production, reduction of effects of
global warming and achieving of the strategic goals of vision 2030.




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