Thermal Energy Storage (TES).
We hope you might enjoy this article as well. This is one of our many eco-snacks series. We will continue on the topic of the reducing energy consumption through the use of a Thermal Energy Storage system.
Building and process use different type of technologies to cool. In a case of a building: occupants, the sun, air infiltrations could require that a space be might cooled to maintain a certain comfort level. Other factors can pitch in. A process might have cooling requirements: manufacturing, food processing, etc. These could use a lot of energy.
For water cooling systems, a chiller can be used to fill these cooling needs. In such a case a thermal energy storage system could prove to be a real advantage. What is a thermal storage system?
Glimpse into a smart solution
It is a system that stores heat or “cold” mainly during off-peak hours. These off-peak hours could be at night or at unoccupied hours. The then stored energy is re-used during working hours/shifts to offset the peak demand. This results in cost savings by reducing peak demand (utility penalties). This helps the chiller to reduce its power consumption. This solution could be a good candidate for existing installations or when expansion is required. Sometimes the expansion can be done without the need of a new electrical service entrance (extra costs). The chiller power requirement in some instances can literally be cut in half. Here are some of the advantages of thermal energy storage systems:
- Expensive peak shaving
- Substitute less expensive off-peak power.
- Reduced equipment size
- Potential grid interactive solution
- Potential Capital costs savings
- Improved HVAC operations
- Back-up capacity savings.
- Extending system capacity.
The fact that the thermal energy storage system is charged at night by the chiller makes the chiller run at high efficiency. Since outdoor temperatures at night are cooler, it is easier for the chiller to operate thus running at high efficiency.
The thermal energy storage system shares the load with the chiller. This means that a smaller chiller could the job and in some instance capital costs can be reduced.
The ability to be grid-interactive could be added, to be able to reduce peak-demand when the grid needs it. Negotiations on compensation might be done with the utility depending on the size of the equipment.
The designer could select a system (chiller) running at peak efficiency since the chiller takes of the base load. Of course, several design considerations would need to be taken into consideration to make this a success story. Considerations such as: how does the cooling load vary? what is the objective of the TES? Which technology could drive the best results?
We hope you enjoyed this article. Feel free to contact us or come back for more.
+1 (888) 294-8802
ASHRAE book. S51.3
picture – Camac