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Project overview
  • Lead Organisation

    Glaciem Cooling Technologies Pty Ltd


    Townsville, Queensland
    Barossa Valley, Nairne, South Australia

    ARENA Program

    Advancing Renewables Program

  • Start date

    18 September 2019

    End date

    31 July 2023

  • Project Partners
    Montague Orchards, Reef HQ Aquarium, Pernod Ricard Winemakers Pty Ltd, University of South Australia


The Advancing Renewables with PCM Thermal Energy Storage project aims to demonstrate the technical and economic value of thermal energy storage using phase change material (PCM) and renewable energy optimisation in commercial and industrial heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC-R).


Many HVAC-R end users are investing in solar PV to control rising energy costs. Some have also investigated adding battery storage in conjunction with solar PV but have found these forms of energy storage not economically viable for their circumstances. For these, the lack of economically-viable energy storage and other smart technology, to help bridge the gap between renewable energy and heating / cooling loads, is a significant hurdle preventing industry transformation from the existing heavy reliance on grid energy consumption for the sector.


The project integrates novel Glaciem Phase Change Material technologies with solar PV and thermal energy storage (TES) in three different HVAC-R scenarios – process cooling, air conditioning and cold storage. An Advanced Control and Forecasting Algorithm (ACFA) software will also be deployed to monitor energy usage and assist in reducing costs. Together these components comprise the “Glaciem System”.


The Advancing Renewables with PCM Thermal Energy Storage project is intended to:

  • demonstrate the innovative use of PCM in Glaciem’s systems
  • provide operational cost savings for commercial customers seeking to invest in a thermal storage system
  • demonstrate the integration of the prototype systems with refrigeration equipment, grid supply and on-site renewable energy generation
  • demonstrate the commercial viability of PCM TES by measuring the economic value of a modular mechanism that can store renewable energy, and
  • enhance system control of PCM TES by using control logic to enable customers to manage peak energy demand and take advantage of renewable energy productivity.

Additional impact

The project has the clear potential to transform the energy profile of the HVAC-R industry – both in terms of the way energy is supplied to HVAC-R system users and by reducing the impact of HVAC-R on Australia’s electricity system.

Read more about renewables for industry.

Last updated 30 March 2022


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