Advanced Concrete Steam Accumulation Tanks for Energy Storage for Solar Thermal Electricity
Pérez Osorio, David
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Steam accumulation is one of the most effective ways of thermal energy storage (TES) for the solar thermal energy (STE) industry. However, the steam accumulator concept is penalized by a bad relationship between the volume and the energy stored; moreover, its discharge process shows a decline in pressure, failing to reach nominal conditions in the turbine. From the economic point of view, between 60% and 70% of the cost of a steam accumulator TES is that of the pressure vessel tanks (defined as US$/kWhth). Since the current trend is based on increasing hours of storage in order to improve dispatchability levels in solar plants, the possibility of cost reduction is directly related to the cost of the material of pressure vessels, which is a market price. Therefore, in the present paper, a new design for steam accumulation is presented, focusing on innovative materials developed specifically for this purpose: two special concretes that compose the accumulation tank wall. Study of dosages, selection of materials and, finally, scale up on-field tests for their proper integration, fabrication and construction in prototype are the pillars of this new steam accumulation tank. Establishing clear and precise requirements and instructions for successful tank construction is necessary due to the highly sensitive and variable nature of those new concrete formulations.
Is part ofEnergies, 2021, vol. 14, núm. 13, p. 3896-1-3896-27
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