Energy Storage

This thesis explores the role of nuclear power plants as load followers in a hybrid renewable energy system using thermal energy storage. In this case, the author describes a prismatic-core advanced high temperature reactor operating at constant power with molten salt storage supplying power to a secondary energy conversion system. The discussion includes a description of the model and its safety features.

This journal article addresses heat storage coupled nuclear reactors, which can provide dispatchable electricity while operating at full power. Six classes of heat storage technologies couple to light-water reactors with steam cycles. Firebrick Resistance-Heated Energy Storage (FIRES) converts low-price electricity into high-temperature stored heat for industry or power. FIRES and brick recuperators coupled to nuclear Brayton power cycles may enable high-temperature reactors to buy electricity when prices are low and sell electricity at higher price, according to the authors.

This journal article addresses the application of nuclear in a hybrid renewable energy system. A challenge of balancing variable renewables with nuclear is that operating nuclear power plants in load-following modes decreases the plants' annual energy output and increases the levelized cost of energy, decreasing economic competitiveness. One possible solution is to couple thermal energy storage to nuclear power plants.

This paper considers a generic thermal energy storage (TES) system as a retrofit to an existing nuclear power plant in the United States (Texas). The authors use a validated PLEXOS model of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas electric grid to simulate electricity market clearing in 2030. They use three scenarios of natural gas price forecasts with a coupled capacity expansion model to simulate the deployment of competing technologies.

According to the authors of this paper, the integration of thermal energy storages (TES) is a promising approach to achieving load flexibility of power plants at economically competitive prices. They use SandTES technology, an active particle-based TES system, to demonstrate the flexibility enhancement via TES integration. Their results give an overview about the chances and restrictions of this implementation concept.