The current trends on energy management shows the unavoidable need of energy storage systems to match both electricity demand and production. In this frame, Thermal Energy Storage (TES) becomes a key technology to develop more efficient solutions to produce electricity on demand as well as recover and store different types and grades of waste heat generated in industry. For this end, it is necessary the correct determination of the suitable TES material for each application, being the main critical factors its working temperature and energy density. Phase change materials (PCMs) may easily fulfil the mentioned requirements and they were already used in some cases, reporting satisfactory results. The future trends of PCMs as TES material is also linked to the market needs on heating and cooling.
Professor Luisa F. Cabeza is a full Professor of Thermal Engineering at the University of Lleida, Spain, where she leads the research group GREiA, an internationally recognised research group in thermal energy storage. She graduated in Bachelor in Chemical Engineering in 1992 and in Industrial Engineering in 1993 at the University Ramon Llull (Barcelona, Spain). She got an MBA in 1995 and a PhD in Industrial Engineering in 1996 at the same university. From 1996 to 1998, she held a postdoctoral position at the ERRC-ARS-USDA in Philadelphia (USA). In 1999, she joined the University of Lleida. Her research interests are thermal energy storage, energy efficiency and renewable energies, and buildings and industrial applications. Professor Cabeza is very active in working groups of the International Energy Agency, is the Thermal Storage Focus Leader of the Renewable Heating and Cooling European Platform and has participated in the Special Report on Renewable Energy of the IPCC and on its Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) and today she leads the “Buildings” chapter of its AR6. She has published almost 400 papers in peer-reviewed journals, has co-authored, edited a co-edited several books. She has also reviewed many papers in peer-reviewed journals and conferences. Recently, Prof Cabeza was recognized as one of the 40 more influencer researchers in the world by Web of Science Group.