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Modelling analysis of a solar-driven thermochemical energy storage unit combined with heat recovery

Zhang, Yong; Hu, Mingke; Chen, Ziwei; Su, Yuehong; Riffat, Saffa


Yong Zhang

Mingke Hu

Professor of Thermal Science and Building Technology

Professor of Sustainable Energy Systems


Solar-driven thermochemical energy storage (TCES) can address the mismatch between solar heat production and heating demand and contribute to decarbonisation in buildings. In many studies of typical salt hydrate TCES systems, massive heat carried by the discharged humid airflow during the charging phase is not well-utilised but directly dissipated to the ambient. Therefore, a solar photovoltaic/thermal-powered TCES system integrating a heat exchanger (PV/T-TCES-HEX system) is proposed in this study for recovering this part of heat. To study the effect of adding the PV/T collector and heat exchanger (HEX) on the performance of the TCES system, the thermal performance of the PV/T-TCES-HEX system is compared with other two TCES systems via COMSOL modelling. Results suggest that the PV/T-TCES-HEX system requires an additional external electricity input of 11.86 kWh on a typical summer day in Nottingham, which is only 40.53% of the TCES-only system. The overall thermal efficiency of the PV/T-TCES-HEX system is 56.00%, indicating an efficiency enhancement of 146.80%. A lower mass flow rate leads to higher thermal efficiency and storage energy. The system has the highest overall thermal efficiency when the reactor bed thickness is 0.04 m (57.55%) and when the reactor bed length is 0.5 m (58.73%).


Zhang, Y., Hu, M., Chen, Z., Su, Y., & Riffat, S. (2023). Modelling analysis of a solar-driven thermochemical energy storage unit combined with heat recovery. Renewable Energy, 206, 722-737.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 17, 2023
Online Publication Date Feb 26, 2023
Publication Date 2023-04
Deposit Date Mar 9, 2023
Publicly Available Date Mar 10, 2023
Journal Renewable Energy
Print ISSN 0960-1481
Electronic ISSN 1879-0682
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 206
Pages 722-737
Keywords Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
Public URL
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