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Thermal energy

About: Thermal energy is a(n) research topic. Over the lifetime, 16803 publication(s) have been published within this topic receiving 239157 citation(s).

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Abstract: The use of a latent heat storage system using phase change materials (PCMs) is an effective way of storing thermal energy and has the advantages of high-energy storage density and the isothermal nature of the storage process. PCMs have been widely used in latent heat thermal-storage systems for heat pumps, solar engineering, and spacecraft thermal control applications. The uses of PCMs for heating and cooling applications for buildings have been investigated within the past decade. There are large numbers of PCMs that melt and solidify at a wide range of temperatures, making them attractive in a number of applications. This paper also summarizes the investigation and analysis of the available thermal energy storage systems incorporating PCMs for use in different applications.

3,746 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Abstract: Latent heat storage is one of the most efficient ways of storing thermal energy. Unlike the sensible heat storage method, the latent heat storage method provides much higher storage density, with a smaller temperature difference between storing and releasing heat. This paper reviews previous work on latent heat storage and provides an insight to recent efforts to develop new classes of phase change materials (PCMs) for use in energy storage. Three aspects have been the focus of this review: PCM materials, encapsulation and applications. There are large numbers of phase change materials that melt and solidify at a wide range of temperatures, making them attractive in a number of applications. Paraffin waxes are cheap and have moderate thermal energy storage density but low thermal conductivity and, hence, require large surface area. Hydrated salts have larger energy storage density and higher thermal conductivity but experience supercooling and phase segregation, and hence, their application requires the use of some nucleating and thickening agents. The main advantages of PCM encapsulation are providing large heat transfer area, reduction of the PCMs reactivity towards the outside environment and controlling the changes in volume of the storage materials as phase change occurs. The different applications in which the phase change method of heat storage can be applied are also reviewed in this paper. The problems associated with the application of PCMs with regards to the material and the methods used to contain them are also discussed.

2,338 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Abstract: Electricity generated from renewable sources, which has shown remarkable growth worldwide, can rarely provide immediate response to demand as these sources do not deliver a regular supply easily adjustable to consumption needs. Thus, the growth of this decentralized production means greater network load stability problems and requires energy storage, generally using lead batteries, as a potential solution. However, lead batteries cannot withstand high cycling rates, nor can they store large amounts of energy in a small volume. That is why other types of storage technologies are being developed and implemented. This has led to the emergence of storage as a crucial element in the management of energy from renewable sources, allowing energy to be released into the grid during peak hours when it is more valuable. The work described in this paper highlights the need to store energy in order to strengthen power networks and maintain load levels. There are various types of storage methods, some of which are already in use, while others are still in development. We have taken a look at the main characteristics of the different electricity storage techniques and their field of application (permanent or portable, long- or short-term storage, maximum power required, etc.). These characteristics will serve to make comparisons in order to determine the most appropriate technique for each type of application.

1,578 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Abstract: This paper reviews the development of latent heat thermal energy storage systems studied detailing various phase change materials (PCMs) investigated over the last three decades, the heat transfer and enhancement techniques employed in PCMs to effectively charge and discharge latent heat energy and the formulation of the phase change problem. It also examines the geometry and configurations of PCM containers and a series of numerical and experimental tests undertaken to assess the effects of parameters such as the inlet temperature and the mass flow rate of the heat transfer fluid (HTF). It is concluded that most of the phase change problems have been carried out at temperature ranges between 0 °C and 60 °C suitable for domestic heating applications. In terms of problem formulation, the common approach has been the use of enthalpy formulation. Heat transfer in the phase change problem was previously formulated using pure conduction approach but the problem has moved to a different level of complexity with added convection in the melt being accounted for. There is no standard method (such as British Standards or EU standards) developed to test for PCMs, making it difficult for comparison to be made to assess the suitability of PCMs to particular applications. A unified platform such as British Standards, EU standards needs to be developed to ensure same or similar procedure and analysis (performance curves) to allow comparison and knowledge gained from one test to be applied to another.

1,385 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
Abstract: Concentrated solar thermal power generation is becoming a very attractive renewable energy production system among all the different renewable options, as it has have a better potential for dispatchability. This dispatchability is inevitably linked with an efficient and cost-effective thermal storage system. Thus, of all components, thermal storage is a key one. However, it is also one of the less developed. Only a few plants in the world have tested high temperature thermal energy storage systems. In this paper, the different storage concepts are reviewed and classified. All materials considered in literature or plants are listed. And finally, modellization of such systems is reviewed.

1,259 citations

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