Renewables for industryProject REALM: Renewable Energy and Load Management
The Renewable Energy and Load Management (REALM) project is a feasibility study to assess the capacity of customers to develop load flexibility in combination with renewable energy: how can electricity customers optimise and integrate variable renewable energy, battery and thermal storage, demand-controls and energy efficiency to create low-cost demand-side flexibility.
Cold storage and refrigeration in the retail sector offers a major opportunity to store electricity, taking advantage of the existing thermal mass of the systems. This includes freezers and refrigerated storage in major distribution centers.
Systems with a large thermal mass and wide setpoint range are most suitable. The control strategy is to to pre-cool to the minimum setpoint and then switch off/down chillers until the temperature drifts towards the upper setpoint before switching the chiller back on (allowing enough time to stabilise temperatures without overshooting). Load management potential corresponds to the dwell time and surplus freezing capacity in the system.