Emerging renewable and sustainable energy technologies: State of the art

Akhtar Hussain, Syed Muhammad Arif, Muhammad Aslam

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

313 Scopus citations


In this paper, five most emerging renewable energy sources are analyzed. These emerging renewables are either special or advanced forms of the mainstream energy sources (solar, wind, geothermal, biofuels, biomass, and hydro) or brand new technologies. The five emerging renewable technologies discussed in this paper include marine energy, concentrated solar photovoltaics (CSP), enhanced geothermal energy (EGE), cellulosic ethanol, and artificial photosynthesis. Marine energy is divided into wave energy, tidal energy, tidal/ocean currents, salinity gradient, and ocean thermal energy conversion. CSP technologies are divided into parabolic troughs, linear Fresnel reflectors, parabolic dishes, and solar towers. The process for developing EGE reservoirs is also explained in detail. Cellulosic ethanol energy extraction is explained for both cellulolysis and gasification. Artificial photosynthesis is explained by considering semiconductor particles, electrolyzers, artificial leaves, and dye-synthesized solar cells. Each emerging renewable source's explanation is followed by its market share, challenges, implications for increased adoption, future prospects, and drawbacks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-28
Number of pages17
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
StatePublished - 2017


  • Artificial photosynthesis
  • Cellulosic ethanol
  • Concentrated solar photovoltaics
  • Emerging renewable energy sources
  • Enhanced geothermal energy
  • Marine and ocean energy


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