More renewable energy means a more variable electricity grid, hastening the need to develop more energy-efficient industry. Better energy storage solutions can reduce peak power demands for intermittent processes, facilitate load shifting, and hedge against any shortage in energy supply. Compared to traditional electricity storage, thermal energy storage (TES) stores large amounts of thermal energy at both low- and high temperatures more efficiently and at much lower cost. Although highly relevant for Norwegian food industries, the competence on cold TES (CTES) is still limited in Norway.
To meet this challenge, PCM-STORE will develop low-temperature TES systems based on phase change materials (PCM) for industrial cooling and freezing processes. Three case studies representing different temperature ranges are identified as potential candidates for implementation of PCM-CTES: industrial batch freezing processes, cold storage in food processes, and refrigerated display cabinets.