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Heat the battery to make households without gas

Ways across Europe are currently being sought to make “Russian gas” a reality. In Austria, for example, an Upper Austrian company is working on how to generate heat for its family from a domestic biogas plant. In the Netherlands, a spin-off of a consortium of the Technical University of Eindhoven (TNO) is working on a solution to the problem. Unlike a domestic biogas plant, this is a Thermal battery for domestic use to produce that can store waste heat from nearby.

Water and salt hydrates as a base

The start Cellcio he’s making good progress with his idea. So good that from 2023 the first prototypes will be tested in Dutch families. But how does this new thermal battery work? A chemical process is involved water and salt hydrates used to release and store heat. Thermal energy is stored in the salt hydrate until water is added. And it also works the other way around: if you add heat, the salt crystals emit water vapor and shrink.

The principle seems simple, but it was for the researchers around the TU professor Olaf Adan it is still not easy to develop the process. So you first had to figure out which salt hydrates are suitable. is now used potassium carbonate.

Prototype with boiler and heat exchanger

Overall, the researchers are already working more than 12 years in the idea, which is increasingly transformed into a product. One is created finished boxwhere the heat exchanger, fan, boiler and condenser are installed and which should be enough to heat a family of four for half a week.

Since, of course, there is not always waste heat in the immediate vicinity that can be exploited, the first tests with the Saudi Basic Industries Corporation at the Chemelot Campus in Sittard-Geleen will now produce a “Heat charging station“is used. The waste heat is then transported via pipes into the heat accumulators to then provide the heat to households.

TU Professor Olaf Adan with the prototype

Ab 2023 the prototype will be tested directly in Dutch families. “Currently, the prototype looks very simple, but with the existing mature technology, it allowed us to demonstrate our concept,” says Adan.

Researchers aren’t even sure their idea can really be used well in everyday life. Adan is cautious in a broadcast from TU Eindhoven: “We have already seen many technologies with great potential that have come to naught.”

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