Industrial Demand Reduction through Innovative Storage Technologies (IDRIST)

Lead Research Organisation: Newcastle University
Department Name: Sch of Engineering

Abstract

It is estimated that heat use (space heating, drying/separation, high/low temperature processing) accounts for over 70% of the total UK industrial energy use. There are significant opportunities for the improved use of low grade heat, particularly from plants which operate in a batching mode, i.e. when waste heat is generated at a different time from when there is a heat demand. The market potential for recoverable heat is estimated to be between 10TWh - 40TWh per annum. Recent developments in energy processing and the need for CO2 reduction have led to a growing interest in using this heat. To maximise the use of recoverable heat and support demand reduction there is a need for intelligent thermal/chemical storage which can be used when required, be upgraded for higher temperature applications or used to offset electricity and/or cooling demand within the plant. This ensures that heat energy which would otherwise be wasted is fully exploited.

The project will bring together academic groups with expertise in thermodynamics, heat transfer and energy together with academics in business and our industrial partner, Spirax Sarco, a major UK based but global company who are major suppliers of industrial heating equipment. Our aim is to research and prove new flexible technologies that will be both wanted and used by process industries such as chemicals, paper and food processing. The systems studied will include:

1. Simple storage with later delivery at nominally the same temperature. The use of advanced Phase Change Materials (PCMs) or Thermo-Chemical reactants will give much higher energy densities (i.e. be smaller) than stores using conventional materials. Size can be a critical factor in industrial applications, but attention must also be paid to cost, corrosion issues, health and safety etc.
2. Thermal transformers that can return a fraction of the stored heat at a higher temperature than it went in. This allows some of the waste heat that would otherwise be wasted to be upgraded to steam raising temperatures for re-use. Steam is still the preferred heating medium in many process industries and possible applications are numerous.
3. Variations on Thermo-Chemical storage devices can also deliver a work (electrical) output or refrigeration rather than heat as can PCM stores in conjunction with Organic Rankine Cycles. We intent to prove, compare and contrast the economics and practicability of these options.

In addition to proving the technical potential of these systems it will be essential to look at their control strategies and how they can be integrated with real products. This demands a new theoretical approach. When recovering / transferring heat between continuously operating streams the technique of pinch-point analysis is used to maximise the possible quantity of energy recovered. This is much complicated when heat inputs and outputs can be at different times. We will develop a 'temporal pinch-point analysis' to cope with the increased complexity presented.

The technologies will have sufficient flexibility to be applied to different size systems and this flexibility will benefit a wide range of potential energy consumers.

Planned Impact

Addressing end use energy demand is essential if legal targets for greenhouse gas emissions and security of supply for the UK are to be achieved. The challenge of this research project is to focus on long term quantifiable end use energy demand reductions. As the research will result in significant technological and societal impacts there is a wide range of potential beneficiaries including:

UK Industry - a reduction in energy consumption is essential for economic reasons and to achieve environmental legislation. The research results will influence future industrial energy utilisation resulting in a positive impact financially, commercially and environmentally. This will have significant financial benefits which can be passed onto their customers and consumers and improve their long term profitability. There is substantial industrial support for the research which will encourage impact and dissemination.

Government and policy makers - these beneficiaries need viable solutions for end user energy demand reduction and to support an improved energy security position for the UK. Cross sector engagement coordinated through i-STUTE will allow government & policymakers and industrial stakeholders to enhance networks and knowledge sharing.

Other beneficiaries include the manufacturers and suppliers of industrial heating/cooling systems, together with renewable energy generators (e.g. geothermal or solar thermal), therefore the reach of the project is significant. The patent already filed in February 2014 (A.P. Roskilly, H.S. Bao. Patent: Energy storage device. Newcastle University, UK, P214234GB ) is a UK held patent and consequently beneficiaries of the project and any further intellectual property will be of benefit to UK plc.
 
Description A patent is filed based on the research outcomes of IDRIST project. The key concept is an optimised thermodynamic cycle of adsorption power generation with higher energy efficiency
Exploitation Route Further investigation based on numerical models will be carried out to further validate the feasibility. Once positive results is achieved, grants application will be considered to collaborate with industrial partners on further research
Sectors Manufacturing, including Industrial Biotechology
 
Description The research stemming from this project will result in significant technological and societal impacts and there are a wide range of potential beneficiaries including: UK Industry - a reduction in energy consumption is essential for economic reasons and to achieve environmental legislation. The research results will have a direct and immediate relevance to operations resulting in a positive impact financially, commercially and environmentally. There is substantial industrial support for the research which will encourage impact and dissemination. Government and policy makers - these beneficiaries need viable solutions for end user energy demand reduction and to support an improved energy security position for the UK. Cross sector engagement coordinated through i-STUTE will allow government & policymakers and industrial stakeholders to enhance networks and knowledge sharing. Other researchers - the research will be of interest to other researchers in this field, both in academia and industry, nationally and internationally. PDRAs - employment, training, networking and development opportunities will be substantial, benefiting the individuals in their careers and providing a supply of well trained, multi-disciplinary researchers.
First Year Of Impact 2015
Sector Education,Energy,Government, Democracy and Justice,Manufacturing, including Industrial Biotechology
Impact Types Societal,Economic,Policy & public services
 
Description Demonstrating industrial opportunities in waste heat recovery
Amount £78,043 (GBP)
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland (UK)
Start 02/2016 
End 01/2017
 
Description Heat supply through Solar Thermochemical Residential Seasonal Storage (Heat-STRESS)
Amount £668,224 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/N02155X/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland (UK)
Start 03/2016 
End 02/2019