Thermal Energy Storage Using Solid Particles for Long-Duration Energy Storage: Paper No. ES2020-1693

Zhiwen Ma, Patrick Davenport, Janna Martinek

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

4 Scopus Citations


The rapid growth of renewable energy increases the importance of economically firming the electricity supply from variable solar photovoltaic- and wind-power generators. Energy storage will be the key to manage variability and to bridge the generation gap over time scales of hours or days for high renewable grid integration. The integration of renewable power and storage of excess electricity has several significant and positive impacts including: 1) expanding the renewable energy portion of total electricity generation, 2) improving the peak-load response, and 3) coordinating the electricity supply and demand over the grid. Long-duration energy storage can potentially complement the reduction of fossil-fuel baseload generation that otherwise would risk grid security when a large portion of grid power comes from variable renewable sources. Several energy storage methods are deployed or under development, including mechanical, chemical or electrochemical, and thermal energy storage (TES). Comparing their economic potential for different scales and applications helps identify suitable technology to support high renewable grid integration. Despite the progress of TES technologies developed and deployed with concentrating solar power (CSP) systems, TES has been undervalued for its potential role in electric energy storage. This paper introduces TES methods applicable to grid energy storage and particularly focuses on solid-particle-based TES to serve the purpose of long-duration energy storage (LDES). The objective of this paper is to present a standalone particle-based TES system for electric storage and to show the potential of TES systems for LDES applications over other energy storage methods such as batteries, compressed-air energy storage, or pumped-storage hydropower.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages9
StatePublished - 2020
EventASME 2020 14th International Conference on Energy Sustainability -
Duration: 17 Jun 202018 Jun 2020


ConferenceASME 2020 14th International Conference on Energy Sustainability

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-5700-76306


  • concentrating solar power
  • grid energy storage
  • renewable energy
  • solid particles
  • thermal energy storage


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