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Thursday, September 28, 2023

Chinese Researchers Develop Innovative Heat Battery Concept

BusinessTechnologyChinese Researchers Develop Innovative Heat Battery Concept

Chinese researchers have developed a new type of battery concept that could revolutionize the way we reuse low-temperature waste heat sources. A team of scientists from the Institute of Metal Research under the Chinese Academy of Sciences have created a “heat battery” that can store thermal energy directly instead of converting it into chemical energy or transferring it to other forms.

The team was able to leverage a unique “inverse barocaloric effect,” which absorbs heat with pressure and releases it with pressure relief. This is the opposite of the typical barocaloric effect. By controlling the pressure, the battery can extract thermal energy from waste heat sources and reuse it on demand. This “heat battery” could have a wide range of applications, such as solid-state refrigeration, smart grids, and house heat management, contributing to China’s efforts to peak carbon dioxide emissions by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060.

According to the researchers, around 70% of the world’s primary energy consumption is lost after conversion, mainly in the form of heat. Harvesting and reusing this lost energy is both profitable and eco-friendly. By developing a “heat battery” that can store thermal energy directly, the team has found a more efficient way to reuse low-temperature waste heat sources.

The pressure-restrained heat-carrying phase of the battery guarantees stable long-duration storage, the researchers said. And when it releases heat at depressurization, the heat output is 11 times greater than the input mechanical energy. With such an impressive ratio, the thermal battery could be used to store waste heat in thermal power plants, as well as in other applications such as smart grids, contributing to a more sustainable future.

This innovative technology could also have far-reaching implications for the battery industry, paving the way for more energy-efficient and eco-friendly battery designs. Overall, the “heat battery” is an exciting new concept that could have significant implications for how we generate and reuse energy, and its impact could be felt across a range of industries.

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