Advanced latent heat of fusion thermal energy storage for solar power systemsThe use of solar thermal power systems coupled with thermal energy storage (TES) is being studied for both terrestrial and space applications. In the case of terrestrial applications, it was found that one or two hours of TES could shift the insolation peak (solar noon) to coincide with user peak loads. The use of a phase change material (PCM) is attractive because of the higher energy storage density which can be achieved. However, the use of PCM has also certain disadvantages which must be addressed. Proof of concept testing was undertaken to evaluate corrosive effects and thermal ratcheting effects in a slurry system. It is concluded that the considered alkali metal/alkali salt slurry approach to TES appears to be very viable, taking into account an elimination of thermal ratcheting in storage systems and the reduction of corrosive effects. The approach appears to be useful for an employment involving temperatures applicable to Brayton or Stirling cycles.
Phillips, W. M. (Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Stearns, J. W. (California Institute of Technology Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, United States)