Residential photovoltaic systems store heat in thermal batteries and then convert it into energy. In addition to reducing carbon dioxide emissions, it can save up to 80% of electricity and 20% of heating in the future2 pcs. A study prepared by researchers from Madrid and the Polytechnic University of Catalonia pointed this out.
Sharp drop in price Photovoltaic and wind energy It has led part of the scientific community to come up with an idea that has only recently appeared absurd: convert these two types of energy into heat, store it, and then convert it back to electrical energy when necessary.
In principle, the most basic law of thermodynamics says that the process cannot be effective, and can only reach 50% at most.However, the path that economics follows is different from that of thermodynamics, and it turns out that the system can be profitable through the following ways Thermal battery.
This is the conclusion of the research published in the journal Applied energy From Solar Energy Research Institute From Madrid University of Technology (IES-UPM)versus Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC).
The key to comparing the profitability of energy storage in the form of heat with other types of traditional energy storage systems is The economic cost of the global system.
He said: “If the price of electricity is cheap enough, it is more profitable to convert it into heat and then into electricity than to use electrochemical cells, even though they are much more efficient.” Alexander Data, A member of IES-UPM, the main author of this study.
He explained, “The reason is that storing it like this is much cheaper than storing it in an electrochemical cell. Up to 100 times reduction. In addition, the heat that cannot be converted into electricity can be used to produce hot water, and even can be used in absorption systems for cooling in summer.
According to this research, a residential photovoltaic self-consumption system using this type of thermal battery can save about 70-80% of electricity and 15-20% of heating, and avoid about one ton of CO emissions2 pcs Every family and every year.
Residential and commercial facilities
The author also estimates that in large-scale applications, such as Large shopping malls, hospitals or factories, Here, economies of scale can further reduce system costs, and can also take advantage of lower photovoltaic power generation costs.
According to the data, “storing wind or photovoltaic energy in the form of thermal energy can not only greatly save accumulated costs, but also meet part of the huge thermal demand through renewable energy. The development of such systems is crucial to reducing our dependence on fossil fuels. , Not only in the power sector, but also in the thermal sector.”
Researchers have already begun to take the first step to make this new type of thermal battery.In the past three years, they coordinated European projects AmadosTogether with seven other European research centers, they built the first laboratory-scale prototype.
An example of integrating a thermal battery in a residential area. / IES-UPM
After the project is completed, European Commission It has been decided to provide additional funding to conduct market research, evaluate modifications to the prototype and analyze its possible commercial development.Researchers with the support of a French consulting company AimingThis task will be carried out from September this year, but it is already looking for industrial partners for manufacturing.
Madrid International Conference
Just a few months ago, the first International Conference Specially used for extremely high temperature thermal batteries. The conference organized by IES members brought together scientists and engineers from 11 countries around the world to discuss the future of this new technology.
Companies such as Australian companies participated in the event. 1414 degrees Or American Antola Energy, They are already developing the first commercial prototypes of these batteries. The item will not stop appearing.
Among them, such as Siemens-Gamesa Ø Malta (E.g. Google) also decided to bet on this type of system.Although very different from a technical point of view, they all try to respond to the growing development needs Very low cost storage system Intermittent renewable energy sources such as solar or wind energy can be deployed on a large scale.
Finding these systems is one of the major technical challenges in the future. At present, heat accounts for more than 50% of the earth’s global energy demand and 40% of global CO emissions.2 pcs.
Date A., Ramos A., Del Canizo C.”Technical and economic analysis of solar photovoltaic power generation-thermoelectricity-energy storage and tri-generation in the residential sector“.Applied energy (256) UNSP 113935, December 2019.