Danish renewable and energy storage specialist Aalborg CSP has just been awarded a certificate by Lloyds Register for its Pit Thermal Energy Storage (PTES) lid technology.
Courtesy of Aalborg CSP.
The certificate covers particular requirements and functions, including a minimum lifetime of 25 years, a minimum energy loss and an availability factor of 100 percent without risk of stoppages. Moreover, a minimum 90 percent of all materials used in a PTES are recyclable.
Throughout the past years, low-temperature heat storage investments have been made to, among other things, further develop, optimise, and commercialise the complete PTES technology including the insulating lid cover. The latest achievements in improving the insulated PTES lid cover have further matured the PTES technology making it a bankable investment for utility companies worldwide.
“Investments in energy infrastructure around storage of excess heating and low-temperature energy is an important building block in the sector-coupling and provides municipalities and energy operations companies with the necessary flexibility as a response to the increasing electrification of our society” said Svante Bundgaard, CEO at Aalborg CSP. “Without flexibility, we become much too dependent on a volatile electricity market, which can cause significant variations in the heating cost from the utility companies”.
Historically, the PTES lid technology has caused technical issues, un-wanted thermal losses and in worst case breakdowns. The now certified insulating lid from Aalborg CSP was developed with the purpose of creating a commercial and well-documented solution that would address key issues experienced during previous deployment of PTES projects. The lid technology addresses and solves issues related to water accumulation inside the lid, water ponding on top of the lid, air accumulation below the lid and thermal expansion. It controls internal vapor, external rainfall and has an automatic ventilation system that prevents air from accumulating inside the PTES.
Regardless of the types of materials or design solutions used, it has resulted in issues with the insulation ability and durability as well as a significant number of unexpected manual operations and maintenance hours each week to avoid water reservoirs on top of the PTES – or even worse, hidden inside the insulation layers. At Marstal Fjernvarme the newly installed PTES lid is replacing a defect and older generation lid and based on this Marstal Fjernvarme has gained a full-automatic plant which requires a minimum of maintenance and supervision. Likewise, the heat loss from the PTES has been reduced, thereby increasing the efficiency of the overall energy system.
To validate the technology, Lloyd’s Register has inspected the project site in Marstal as well as reviewed and evaluated all technical solutions, critical components, and calculations. Moreover, performance tests from Marstal have been reviewed to confirm the functional performance, durability, and quality of the PTES lid technology. All specifications, such as the 25-year service life, the maximum heat loss of 10 percent and the 90 percent recyclability have thus been checked and verified by Lloyd’s Register.
The certification was issued shortly after Aalborg CSP received an order for an 11,000 square metre customised lid solution for the 70,000 cubic metre Integrated PTES system in Høje Taastrup near Copenhagen, Denmark. The PTES in Høje Taastrup is a thermal storage functioning as a thermal battery with a capacity of 3,300 MWh. The thermal battery is charged by heat from the transmission grid and discharged to the district heating network when the demand for heating increases. The lid solution from Aalborg CSP will ensure a lower heat loss inside the PTES resulting in higher performance and reliability of the storage.
The PTES technology has great opportunities and several projects within 200,000 to 1,000,000 m3 have already been identified in what is considered a promising pipeline within the European countries; this, despite the fact that the technology is still not implemented in many countries. However, with the new design concepts, a technology qualification certification and a large-scale commercial project already implemented, the PTES technology will be a key element in the energy infrastructure development in the years to come.