Decarbonization by Thermal Storage Applied to Low Temperature District Heating
Interseasonal Thermal Storage allows storing summer solar heat for use in winter, doubling the amount of heat available. It also allows use of all the heat from continuous heat sources. Operating the district heating system and storage systems at low temperatures reduces the cost of both systems, and makes more heat sources available. For a district heating system operating in the temperature range of 120F supply and 90F return water, typical sources would be solar thermal collectors, recovered heat lost off the back of solar PV collectors, reject heat from cooling data centers, and possibly building cooling reject heat (the latter two via heat pumps). Some waste heat from electric generating plants could also be added. Storage could be deep U tubes. This low temperature system differs from European proposals, which must operate at higher temperatures, using concentrating solar collectors, to match higher district heating temperatures.
Based on savings calculated from district heating from power plant waste heat, U.S. savings from a renewable district energy system could be on the order of 1.0 million barrels of oil per day, and 100 million tons of CO2 per year.
Mr. Timmerman holds Bachelors and Masters degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Cornell University, and has done additional graduate work at Northwestern University. He is a Registered Professional Engineer in Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, holds 3 patents on innovative district heating systems, and has given 8 papers on advanced energy systems. He is listed in Who’s Who in America, 2020.
Mr. Timmerman is an authority on innovative district heating systems, and is the author of the chapter on District Heating Below 167F (75C), in the 2020 book by Nova Science Publishers entitled: The Future of District Heating.(Invited contribution). He was the Engineer of Record on the proposed Solar Heating with Central Storage project to heat two buildings totaling 400,000 square feet at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he did the engineering design of the system developed by a research team at the University. He invented a technology for use of power plant waste heat for district heating, which allowed any power plant to become a cogeneration plant, and designed a system to heat the office building of a utility with the waste heat from their power plant.
Mr. Timmerman is a member of ASHRAE, and a retired member of AEE.