Thermal energy storage systems provide facility cooling by producing and storing chilled water or ice during off-peak hours (night time) when power is the least expensive and then using the water or ice during the on-peak hours (mid-day) when power is the most expensive.
This process is called “Permanent Load Shifting”, and Utility companies in California and elsewhere are offering generous rebates and incentives to encourage adoption of these systems to reduce demand on the grid during on-peak hours
These systems can operate independently or as part of a CHP system and offer an option to further reduce energy consumption and cost.
While HVAC cooling loads typically consume about 40% of the electricity used at a facility in warm climates, TES system efficiency in load shifting has the potential to reduce facility energy costs by 20% or more.
Other central utility plant and chiller system benefits include –
- Smaller equipment requirements
- Lower maintenance costs
- Potential lower capital costs
- More flexible plant operations
- Added backup capacity
- Improved plant efficiency