Increased Capacity for Thermal Energy Storage by Combining Latent and Bonding Reaction Heat Storage

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8650-11-M-5124
Agency Tracking Number: F103-163-2289
Amount: $99,674.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2011
Solicitation Year: 2010
Solicitation Topic Code: AF103-163
Solicitation Number: 2010.3
Small Business Information
200 Yellow Place, Pines Industrial Center, Rockledge, FL, -
DUNS: 175302579
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 J. Cutbirth
 Sr. Mechanical Engineer
 (321) 631-3550
 mcutbirth@mainstream-engr.com
Business Contact
 Michael Rizzo
Title: Chief Financial Officer
Phone: (321) 631-3550
Email: mar@mainstream-engr.com
Research Institution
 Stub
Abstract
Avionic systems which feature low duty cycle heat loads, such as high-powered microwave (HPM) or high-energy lasers (HEL) require thermal energy storage (TES) to minimize the volume/mass of the thermal management system. The Air Force currently seeks a TES with system-based heat capacities of 68 kJ/kg and 120 MJ/m3 while allowing for a charge/discharge rate of 2 kW/kg. Currently state-of-the-art paraffin-, metal-hydride-, and ammonia-based reversible systems have volume based system heat capacities that do not exceed 90 MJ/m3. Mainstreams approach which combines both latent- and bond-reaction thermal storage is capable of>450 MJ/m3 by employing an open-loop concept that allows for recharging during ground-operations. This approach can easily be tailored for either HPM, 70 aC, or HEL, 20 aC, DEW. For the Phase I effort, Mainstream will experimentally demonstrate the heat capacity and heat input rate. The Phase II effort will focus on the integration of the TES with an avionic TMS. BENEFIT: Solid-state lasers for direct energy weapons (DEW) require a minimum capacity of 100 kW of optical power. However, existing efficiencies of the DEW are<10%, yielding a thermal load of>1 MW. However, DEWs are also characterized by low duty cycles allowing for thermal energy storage (TES) to significantly reduce the size of the thermal management system (TMS). Even if a reversible system could be designed to yield 120 MJ/m3 (current state of the art is<90 MJ/m3), the TES would require 12.6 m3 (assuming ATLS mission profile). However, if a mission profile can be designated pre-flight, the total energy storage would be defined allowing for an open-loop system that can be recharged during ground-operations between missions. Mainstreams open-loop system provides for a 5x increase over the SBIR solicitation in both mass- and volume-specific heat capacity without the obstacles faced with common open-loop systems such as water vaporization (inadequate operating temperatures and high vacuum requirement) and ammonia vaporization (hazardous material storage and venting). The proposed design would allow for optimization of TMS/TES for finite mission/life cycle systems such as single-flight UAVs, missiles, and DEWs.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

Agency Micro-sites

SBA logo
Department of Agriculture logo
Department of Commerce logo
Department of Defense logo
Department of Education logo
Department of Energy logo
Department of Health and Human Services logo
Department of Homeland Security logo
Department of Transportation logo
Environmental Protection Agency logo
National Aeronautics and Space Administration logo
National Science Foundation logo
US Flag An Official Website of the United States Government