Development of a low cost thermal storage system using a novel Phase Change Material for use with solar thermal and waste heat recovery systems

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 0944716
Agency Tracking Number: 0944716
Amount: $193,400.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2010
Solicitation Year: 2010
Solicitation Topic Code: BC
Solicitation Number: NSF 09-541
Small Business Information
Fulcrum
1407 East Grove Street, Midland, MI, 48640
DUNS: 145557026
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Christopher Edwards
 MS
 (989) 636-1025
 cedwards@fulcrumcomposites.com
Business Contact
 Christopher Edwards
Title: MS
Phone: (989) 636-1025
Email: cedwards@fulcrumcomposites.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
This Small Business Innovation Research Project will develop a thermal storage system combined with solar thermal heating and waste heat recovery allowing energy to be accumulated throughout the year to be used when needed in winter. The use of a new phase change material as the energy storage device, combined with the use of winter and summer heat generation will make feasible the storage of sufficient heat for a typical family residence in an acceptably small storage space. Storage of thermal energy is the single largest barrier to large scale implementation of solar thermal collection. Currently, no viable option exists for heat storage in a reasonable volume. The objective is to develop a solar thermal heating system with sufficient heat storage capacity to allow heat to be generated and stored throughout the year and used to provide heating in winter. During phase I a prototype system capable of generating and storing 300MJ of heat, or roughly the daily heat requirement for a domestic house in winter, will be developed. The techniques and data developed during this work will provide the necessary basis to develop a full scale system capable of providing heating throughout the winter to a typical domestic house. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project lies in making localized solar heat generation for space heating a viable option for domestic as well as commercial, institutional and industrial buildings a commercial practicality. It is estimated that approximately 40 million buildings in the US are suitable for implementation of solar thermal heating. This represents a US-based manufacturing opportunity of >$400 billion. Successful implementation on this scale could result in annual energy savings of 300billion kWh corresponding to $30 billion in energy costs.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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