Heat Activated Metal Hydride Refrigeration Cycle
Roughly two-thirds of the fuel used in electric power plants to generate electricity is wasted in the form of dissipated heat. An opportunity exists to maximize the use of this heat for heating and cooling needs by generating power and using the waste heat on-site, the concept behind combined heating and power (CHP) systems. Because there is a greater coincidence of cooling and electricity needs compared to heat and electricity needs, efficient cooling and refrigeration equipment, which utilizes the waste heat to create cooling, is essential to maximize waste heat utilization. This project will develop refrigeration cycles based on use of metal hydride slurry technology. Although metal hydrides have been under development for another application (for storage and transport of hydrogen in future hydrogen vehicle applications), recent work has shown that these materials would be viable for use in absorption refrigeration cycles. Phase I involved analysis and initial feasibility studies for metal hydride slurry refrigeration cycles. A prototype metal hydride slurry chiller will be developed in Phase II. Commercial Applications and other Benefits as described by the awardee: Metal hydride slurry chillers and refrigeration systems would be expected to improve the energy savings and economic attractiveness of CHP systems, helping to increase the adoption of such systems, particularly in large commercial buildings and industry. Waste heat streams in industrial applications such as food processing also should provide a setting for the proposed technology. Benefits would include reductions in energy use, relief of electricity grid stress during times of peak load, and reduction of emissions.
Small Business Information at Submission:
15 Acorn Park Cambridge, MA 02140
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