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1.1 BACKGROUND OF STUDY
Over the years the activities of the solar energy have being beneficial to mankind. It is evident that the solar energy is the most abundant source of energy in the world; although it is not the complete answer to today’s energy crisis.
Solar energy, radiant light and heat from the sun have readily been harnessed by humans since right from the time of old using a range of evolving technologies.
History has it that the early development of solar technologies from 1860s till date was driven by an expectation that the use of coal would soon become history as its availability will go extinct.
The cost of solar panels has been constantly decreasing which encourages its usage in various sectors. One of the applications of this technology is used in irrigation systems for farming.
According to (Harishankar et al., 2014) stated that Solar powered irrigation system can be a suitable alternative for farmers in the present state of energy crisis in Nigeria. This is green way for energy production which provides free energy once an initial investment is made.
Nigeria among other country is richly blessed with abundant rainfall, and various methods have been adopted in the distribution of water for irrigation purposes in Nigeria. Some of the methods to mention but a few include human energy, animal power, hydro power, wind, solar and fuels such a diesel for small generators. Here the study will focus on the design and simulation of automatic solar powered time regulated water pumping and irrigation system with solar photovoltaic panels and locally available electric pumps.
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
What really instigated the study on the design and simulation of automatic solar powered time regulated water pumping and irrigation system was due to the problems present in the existing systems such as:
1. The inability of the water pumping and irrigation system to deliver a particular volume of water in a given period of time
2. The problem of power, because most water pumping and irrigation systems used electricity
3. The weather factor (cloud cover, fog, and overcast skies)
4. Lastly are the environmental factors such as mounting structure, power controller and electrical connections.
1.3 AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF STUDY
The main aim of the research work is to carry out a design and simulation of automatic solar powered time regulated water pumping and irrigation system. Other specific objectives of the study include:
1. To design a solar powered system that will deliver a required volume of water needed in given period of time
2. To design a system that will work with less supervision
3. To design an automatic system that will supplement environmental factors
4. To design a solar power system with high time regulated efficiency
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY
The study on design and simulation of automatic solar powered time regulated water pumping and irrigation system will be of immense benefit to farmers, the federal government of Nigeria and the rest of the world as it will design an automatic solar powered time regulated water pumping and irrigation system with high simulation efficiency.
1.5 SCOPE OF STUDY
This study centers only on design and simulation of automatic solar powered time regulated water pumping and irrigation system this is due to time constrained and coupled with the fact that this research work is done alongside with academic work.
1.6 DEFINITION OF TERMS
PHOTOVOLTAIC EEFECT: are best known as a method for generating electric power by using solar cells to convert energy from the sun into a flow of electrons by the photovoltaic effect
IRRIGATION: is the method in which a controlled amount of water is supplied to plants at regular intervals for agriculture
SOLAR ENERGY: is the conversion of energy from sunlight into electricity, either directly using photovoltaic (PV), or indirectly using concentrated solar power
SIMULATION: imitation of a situation or process
AUTOMATIC: (of a device or process) working by itself with little or no direct human control.
1.7 LIMITATION OF STUDY
Financial constraint- Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information.
Time constraint- The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work
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