Mechanical Battery Designed for Domestic Solar Power Storage

Trangmar, Alex (2017) Mechanical Battery Designed for Domestic Solar Power Storage. [USQ Project]


The State Governments introduced solar bonus schemes in order to achieve the Australian Governments Renewable Energy Targets. The schemes were successful in achieving their goals of increasing the total number of solar PV installations in residents and small businesses. Many home owners have invested into solar PV systems with the financial incentives of these schemes. However, since the conclusion of solar bonus schemes solar feed-in tariffs are no longer subsidised by the state governments. This has led to the profitability of domestic solar PV systems being significantly reduced. Energy storage systems can improve solar PV profitability by increasing self-consumption. Storing energy until it is required rather than selling it to the energy retailer cheap only to buy it back at a higher rate.

Chemical battery systems are currently available for integration with domestic solar applications. However their manufacturing cost and limited lifespan limit their ability to improve the profitability of the solar installation. This work investigates the feasibility of developing alternate energy storage technologies to the application of domestic solar PV systems. The technical feasibility criteria have been developed to determine which technology would be most suitable for further development.

A flywheel system has been selected and a prototype design has been developed. The focus of the design is aimed at the material selection and optimised geometric shape of the flywheel rotor. The prototype model has been simulated under the expected operational conditions of a domestic solar PV application. Flywheel systems are susceptible to high rates of self-discharge due to losses from friction and drag force on the rotor. The simulation results have shown that substantial improvements can be made to modern flywheel systems towards the suitability of this application. However, these designs need further development to improve the profitability of solar PV systems.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Mechanical)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering (1 Jul 2013 - 31 Dec 2021)
Supervisors: Fulcher, Bob
Date Deposited: 10 Sep 2021 00:50
Last Modified: 10 Sep 2021 00:50

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