KFAS holds seminar on thermal energy storage

A symposium on Thermal Energy Storage - Sources and Applications was held on Tuesday, September 18, by the Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences (KFAS).

The seminar, led by Professor  Martin Schichtel,  discussed ways that new and innovative thermal storage solutions can help reduce peak demand and improve efficiency in a variety of applications.

The seminar was attended by about 40 engineers and researchers from various research institutions, including the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research and Kuwait University, in addition to the Ministry of Electricity and Water, EQUATE, the National Technology Enterprises Company, as well as other private cement and natural gas companies.

Prof. Schichtel spoke on significant materials recently developed to store heat from temperatures between 350 to 1,300° C, and which can store around one megawatt hour of heat for every cubic meter of the storage tank at 1,000° C.

Thermal energy is easy to store and use, he added, and has an estimated lifespan of about 25 years.

The professor also spoke on the different fields and sectors that stand to benefit from using thermal energy storage.

Heat or gases produced by the manufacturing of some materials, including steel, aluminum, ceramics and glass, as well as gas flares in oil refineries, can be used as a source of thermal energy. This heat can be kept in storage systems for use when necessary.

Heat from solar thermal power plants can be stored in large reservoirs at high temperatures, and then used in times of high energy demand, or for other purposes, including heating and cooling.