Solar thermal energy storage

Title of Project

Solar thermal energy storage


Dr Greg Wheatley

College or Research Centre

College of Science & Engineering

Summary of Project

“In the present scenario of a huge energy demand, dependency on fossil fuels only, certainly creates crisis in future, especially for developing country. Although, renewable resources of energy, such as solar energy are being utilized on a broad scale, but there are concerns related to economy and social acceptability of these resources. Main reasons for these difficulties are low density of solar radiation on earth’s surface: and its fluctuation with time of the day and the day of the year. To remove these kinds of difficulties, solar energy storage unit must be introduced in green building applications. In this article, literature on thermal energy storage unit with phase change material has been rigorously studied with the objective of selecting the best suitable PCMs and materials for the design of test bench of the thermal energy storage unit. Thermal energy storage plays an important role in some industrial applications, such as, solar thermal storage, center air conditioning, energy-saving building and waste heat recovery systems. Thermal energy storage systems are crucial for reducing dependency on fossil fuels and also for minimizing CO2 emissions. Thermal energy storage can be accomplished either by using sensible heat storage or latent heat storage. Sensible heat storage has been used for centuries by builders to store/release passively thermal energy, but a much larger volume of material is required to store the same amount of energy in comparison to latent heat storage. Latent heat storage is more attractive than sensible heat storage because of its high storage density with smaller temperature swing. During melting or solidification processes, a PCM (phase change material) can effectively release or store a significant amount of latent heat. The temperature of a PCM can also be stably maintained during the latent heat transfer process. Therefore, a PCM is a very promising material choice in energy storage and thermal environmental control applications.”

Key Words

Laboratory testing; prototype testing

Would suit an applicant who

has a sound academic background, research experience, an interest in chemical and mechanical engineering and strong experimental and computational skills.

Updated: 19 May 2020