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TCM

IEA SHC Task 58: “We will need new and innovate designs for heat and mass exchangers”

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on July 18, 2017
Benjamin FumeyThermochemical materials (TCMs) used in storage tanks show higher heat capacities than water and smaller losses over time. They are crucial to an increase in solar use among consumers and the storage of summer heat for the winter season. However, they are also more complex than their water-based counterparts, which require only heat exchangers. Conversely, TCM storage units additionally need mass exchangers to make sorbent-sorbate interaction possible. Research into TCM storage has so far been coordinated by the IEA’s Solar Heating and Cooling Programme’s Task 58, Material and Components for Thermal Energy Storage. Solarthermalworld.org spoke with Benjamin Fumey, Researcher at EMPA – Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, about the technology. Fumey heads the Task 58 research group focused on Component Design for Thermochemical Materials. The operation of the specially designed heat and mass exchanger will be explained throughout the interview based on a TCM storage tank with sodium hydroxide as the liquid sorbent. Important technical terms can be found in the glossary at the end of this article.
 

IEA SHC: Coordinating Thermal Energy Storage Research Worldwide

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on August 30, 2016
The key to the decarbonisation of the energy sector is new compact storage technology: It will require much R&D to develop market-ready products based on new storage designs with phase change and thermochemical materials (PCMs and TCMs). One strategy is to combine resources within international research programmes – to create platforms unhindered by national borders or scientific disciplines, such as the joint task Material and Component Development for Thermal Energy Storage planned within the IEA Technology Collaboration Programmes. Its two future operating agents, Wim van Helden (left) from Austrian AEE INTEC for the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme and Andreas Hauer from the German Bavarian Center for Applied Energy Research (ZAE Bayern) for the IEA Energy Conservation through Energy Storage (ECES) programme, invite all interested researchers to Vienna, Austria, to attend the second Task Definition Meeting on 15 and 16 September 2016. 
 

Austria: Task 42 Meeting on Compact Thermal Energy Storage Systems

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 3, 2015
Task 42 MeetingIEA-SHC Task 42, entitled Compact Thermal Energy Storage, has entered into its final year and will end in December 2015. In February 2015, 44 scientists met for the 13th Experts Task Meeting in Vienna, Austria, to discuss the characterisation and development of materials for latent heat storage systems. This included phase change materials (PCM) like paraffin and thermo-chemical materials (TCM), such as sodium hydroxide solutions or zeolites. During the three-day meeting, the task members also visited the cogeneration plant Simmering in Vienna. The photo shows them in front of two pressurised water tanks with a total volume of 11,000 m3. The tanks are charged and discharged with 145 GWh annually and are operated to decouple heat energy production from demand in the district heating network of Vienna.
Photo: Institute for Solar Technology SPF 
 

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