Tuesday, June 12, 2012

More about thermal storage in tall buildings

11 June 2012: In February'12, I published an outline illustration about including and distributing thermal storage in tall buildings, adapting some of the ideas in the Peveril Solar house.

Solar thermal energy collected by a large thermal array on the roof (above a roof of plant rooms and tanks and machine rooms) and delivers energy to local and intermediate stores - tanks for hot water and thermal stores for enough energy for space heating. A major store can be at roof level, and short term thermal energy stores every 15 to 30 metres vertically (4 to 8 floors).

Here is an additional image produced to help my students illustrate the concept better - it is kept very simple. It is based on their project for a three tower scheme in London.

Surplus energy is shipped from thermal stores to underground piles for inter seasonal storage, during night hours in one quick efficient night time operation using off peak power - providing a good delta-T for the next day between the collectors and the thermal stores.   It is impractical to have continuous charging of piles, the system losses of daily pumping over such a distance would be prohibitive. So it is better if pile charging is done systematically based on clock times and temperatures in the stores that you are purging.
Thermal stores are purged, but Water Tanks remain at the optimum temperature for hot water requirements.

The facade can also include solar thermal collectors, which would shorten pipe distances to the local stores - reducing cost of piping and system losses through pumping and heat loss in transmission. One of my student groups for the New York project 2 years ago had a continuous thermal store running in in compartments in a vertical duct, so that solar panels on each floor level on the south facade had only the shortest possible distance to recharge the store, and the shortest distances from the store to the apartments.

I will publish more excerpts from the drawings of the students within a short time.

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