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Performance evaluation of underground thermal storage integrated dual-source heat pump systems...

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Energy and Buildings
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The increasing demand for electricity stresses the existing electric grids. Buildings consume 73% of all U.S. electricity and are responsible for 30% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Integrating thermal energy storage (TES) in building heating/cooling systems, which consume considerable electricity, can mitigate the challenges to electric grids. This study reports on a novel thermal energy storage device integrated heat pump system to reshape the building electricity demand profile while maintaining thermal comfort. The annual performance of the proposed system has been evaluated through a dynamic system simulation with high fidelity in the Modelica platform. The dynamic model of the novel hybrid component named ‘dual purpose underground thermal battery’ was developed and validated. It was then incorporated into the system model. Given a time-of-use tariff, a rule-based control strategy was designed to shift the electric demand and switch the heat pump source for a typical single-family house in different climate zones of the United States. The system performance of the new TES-integrated dual-source heat pump was compared with that of a conventional air-source heat pump system. The results indicate that the proposed system can reduce the annual HVAC electricity cost by up to 52% while saving 45.2% on electricity consumption. In the Northern areas, the annual peak load of the HVAC system can be reduced by 64.9%. However, this reduction is less in the Southern areas as the system’s higher efficiency in winter dominates the overall energy-saving potential.