DOI: 15, 2021Proceedings Paper

Magnetic Bearings for High-Temperature sCO2 Pumped Heat Energy Storage

Aaron RimpelTim Allison


Supercritical carbon dioxide (sCO2)-based cycles have been investigated for pumped heat energy storage (PHES) with the potential for high round-trip efficiencies. For example, PHES-sCO2 cycles with hot-side temperatures of 550°C or higher could achieve round-trip efficiencies greater than 70%. The energy storage cycle and equipment also synergize well with other systems incorporating thermal storage and/or sCO2 power blocks, e.g., concentrating solar power. These sCO2 cycles are closed Brayton cycles whose efficiency and system cost and complexity are sensitive to leakage and makeup/recompression requirements for long-term application. Therefore, incorporating hermetically-sealed machinery is an attractive option for minimizing system leakage and improving system cost and performance. Bearings that enable hermetic machines include sCO2 process-lubricated bearings and magnetic bearings. Ongoing developments in sCO2-lubricated bearings are addressing the well-known limitations that have challenged their use in megawatt-scale machinery (load capacity, damping), yet magnetic bearings have decades of performance in commercial applications at that scale and are worthy of consideration. This paper discusses a proposed sCO2-based PHES ...Continue Reading

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