Abstract In this paper the authors investigated a study for the life cycle assessment (a period of 20 years) in terms of embodied energy of a water pumping and desalination process powered by a hybrid photovoltaic-wind system. Environmental indicator: embodied energy was used according to ISO standards. Embodied energy is computed for a photovoltaic subsystem, a wind turbine subsystem and a hydraulic process (water pumping, water storage and a desalination process). Life cycle assessment evaluation of the photovoltaic subsystem was studied for three types of photovoltaic module: mono-crystalline, poly-crystalline and amorphous silicon. In addition, the amounts of the primary energy requirement for different industrial PV modules and for different industrial wind turbines are computed. In the hydraulic process, the life cycle assessment is studied for three motor-pumps, two stages of pressure vessel and three water tanks. The life cycle analysis results show that the embodied energy for 20 years׳ lifetime of 1 m 3 of permeate water is around 2.2 MJ/m 3 . It is also found that the embodied energy of 1 m 2 wind turbine is around 2409 MJ/m 2 and the embodied energy of 1 m 2 mono-, poly-, and amorphous silicon solar panels is 4779 MJ/m 2 , 3815 MJ/m 2 and 2462 MJ/m 2 , respectively.

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