A review of renewable energy based power supply options for telecom towers

Environ Dev Sustain. 2023 Jan 17:1-68. doi: 10.1007/s10668-023-02917-7. Online ahead of print.

ABSTRACT

Telecom services play a vital role in the socio-economic development of a country. The number of people using these services is growing rapidly with further enhance growth expected in future. Consequently, the number of telecom towers that are critical for providing such services has also increased correspondingly. Such an increase in the number of telecom towers in a country implies a corresponding increase in the electricity demand of the country. Moreover, in view of growing concerns about climate change, it is necessary that the decarbonization of telecom towers is prioritized so as to minimize their carbon footprint. In view of the above, the primary objective of this paper is to provide a comprehensive analysis of various renewable energy-based systems and the advantages they offer for powering telecom towers, based on a review of the existing literature and field installations. Telecom towers are powered by hybrid energy systems that incorporate renewable energy technologies such as solar photovoltaic panels, wind turbines, fuel cells, and microturbines. Utilizing these systems helps to reduce the consumption of fossil fuels and consequently mitigates the anthropogenic carbon emissions. Moreover, information related to growth of the telecom industry, telecom tower configurations and power supply needs, conventional power supply options, and hybrid system combinations and their benefits. Several field installations of renewable energy-based hybrid systems have also been summarized. This review can help to evaluate appropriate low-carbon technologies and also to develop policy instruments to promote renewable energy-based telecom tower power systems.

PMID:36687741 | PMC:PMC9843693 | DOI:10.1007/s10668-023-02917-7

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