Active PCM cold storage in off-grid telecommunication base stations: potential assessment of primary energy savings

[+] Author and Article Information
Alexander Studniorz

Institute for Energy Engineering, Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin 10587, Germany

Daniel Wolf

HPS Home Power Solutions GmbH, Berlin, Germany

Andreas Christidis

Institute for Energy Engineering, Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin 10587, Germany

George Tsatsaronis

HPS Home Power Solutions GmbH, Berlin, Germany

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4040527 History: Received January 27, 2017; Revised May 25, 2018


The global demand for wireless, mobile communication and data services has grown significantly in the recent years. Consequently, electrical energy consumption to provide these services has increased. The principal contributors to this electricity demand are approximately 7 million telecommunication base stations (TBS) worldwide. They act as access points for mobile networks and have typical electrical loads of 2 3 kW. Whereas for most of the TBS the electricity is supplied by the grid, approximately 15 % are located in remote areas or regions with poor grid accessibility, where diesel generators (DG) supply the required electricity. Based on a dynamic simulation model built in Matlab/Simulink, the application of a latent heat storage (LHS) using phase change material (PCM) in existing off grid TBS has been analysed. The LHS unit has been modelled as an air based storage with phase change temperatures between 20 30 °C with the PCM being macro encapsulated in slabs. This paper demonstrates the potential to reduce the primary energy consumption in off grid TBS through the following methods: optimization of the operating point of the diesel generators and of the air conditioning unit operation schedule as well as utilization of photovoltaic energy.

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