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Thermal Storage

Storages are used to temporarily adapt the available energy potential to the prevalent energy demand, making them a core topic in transforming the energy supply to be based on renewable energy sources, where the availability fluctuates considerably.

Core Area

The Thermal Storage Technical Unit work on non-electric capacitor systems, which includes both storing thermal energy in the high and low temperature range over short periods (short-term and daily storages) and long periods (seasonal stores) as well as converting excess power into chemical energy sources with high energy density.

One focus is utilising sorption processes, which on the one hand allows for non-dissipative storage of chemical potential for any length of time and, on the other hand this minimises thermodynamic loss when adjusting the energy supply to the required utility temperature.

Research and development activities focus on developing application-oriented system solutions, procedures and plant components. During this process, the Technical Unit benefits from close collaboration with the experts from the institute's «electrical» department and numerical simulation.


Open sorption processes

  • Heat recovery
  • High temperature condensing appliance technology (CHP, boiler, power station)
  • Dehumidification of process and waste gases (methanation, preventing fogging)
  • Water reclamation from waste gases (e.g. reforming process for fuel cells)
  • Cooling

Thermochemical energy storage

  • Seasonal heat accumulator based on absorption processes

Latent heat accumulator

  • Stores with a low temperature spread reduce thermodynamic loss in the heat supply

High temperature stores

  • Buffer tanks for flexible energy supply from solar power plants

Power to Gas

  • Methanation reactors with open sorption process, efficient heat dissipation and improving performance through drying process gas

Thermal Storage project examples