A methodical approach for the design of thermal energy storage systems in buildings: An eight-step methodology

Samira Rahnama*, Mahmood Khatibi, Alessandro Maccarini, Mahmoud Murtala Farouq, Parham Mirzaei Ahranjani, Enrico Fabrizio, Maria Ferrara, Dragos-Ioan Bogatu, Jun Shinoda, Bjarne W. Olesen, Ongun B. Kazanci, Elaheh Bazdar, Fuzhan Nasiri, Chao Zeng, Xu Wei, Fariborz Haghighat, Alireza Afshari

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Recent research focuses on optimal design of thermal energy storage (TES) systems for various plants and processes, using advanced optimization techniques. There is a wide range of TES technologies for diverse thermal applications, each with unique technical and economic characteristics. Matching an application with the most suitable TES system remains challenging. This study proposes an eight-step design methodology guiding the process from describing the thermal process to defining the most appropriate TES based on constraints and requirements. The steps include specifying the thermal process, system design parameters, storage characteristics, integration parameters, key performance indicators, optimization method, tools, and design robustness. Seven already-designed TES systems are evaluated to assess the methodology's effectiveness, where the design procedures have been adapted to the proposed steps. Case studies involve various applications with both sensible and latent TES systems, demonstrating the applicability of the proposed design procedure. A significant diversity exists among the design cases regarding the design objective, input, design, and output parameters. Nevertheless, the design procedure in each case can be deconstructed into the outlined design steps. The last design step has been excluded from all case studies due to insufficient information regarding the robustness of the design process. The paper demonstrates how a methodical approach can be applied to examine the TES design and the integration. The design steps proposed in this study can serve as a foundation for developing a more systematic approach for designing TES systems in future works, resulting in simplifying the design process.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere600
JournalEnergy Storage
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2024


  • systematic design methodology
  • thermal energy storage design


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