The latent heat thermophotovoltaic battery design
Surpassing all current technologies both in performance and reduced costs
Our system consists of a thermophotovoltaic (TPV) generator connected to a tank filled with a combination of metals, and an electric furnace. Using surplus energy from renewable sources the furnace generates heat melting the metals at a temperature of around 1000ºC. Remaining in this state for long periods of time (over several days) these now incandescent metals emit large amounts of photons. This thermal radiation holds the key to converting the heat back into electricity. Operating like a solar cell with a twist the TPV generator can be inserted, converting thermal radiation into electricity, or retracted to stop the discharge, allowing the system to operate only when needed.
Heat as a by-product
Satisfying heating needs both at a residential and industrial level
To operate at optimal functional temperature (lower than 80ºC) our system’s TPV generators must be cooled. During this process, low-temperature heat is generated with a variety of potential uses. Often underappreciated in the energy landscape, thermal heat comprises more than half of the global energy demand – two to three times more than electrical needs – and since most of it comes from the burning of natural gas, it contributes heavily to global CO2 emissions. Our battery output temperature could tackle approximately 64 % of all the EU heating needs: corresponding to space heating, domestic hot water, and to low-temperature industrial processes.