PLUSS Polymers, which recently raised Rs. 15 crore equity capital from Tata Capital Innovation Fund, announced its partnership with TESSOL — technology-based start-up. The systems on offer under this partnership are ideally suited for commercial offices and shopping complexes operational for 10-12 hours during the day, essentially. These energy storage systems enables the building to generate and store cool energy at night and use when there is a shortage during the day. They will help state electricity boards meet the huge demand-supply gap.Most of us, especially in North India know and use battery inverters to fight the frequent power outages at home. These are energy invertors for larger commercial buildings. “PLUSS Polymers and TESSOL are working to create revolutionary products using phase change materials, specially crafted materials to store energy like your inverter batteries do,” said Rajat Gupta, Director, TESSOL.“We are delighted at the immense opportunity that thermal energy storage provides for an energy-deficit country like India. The combination of R&D expertise in materials, polymers offered by PLUSS and the application development team of TESSOL will collectively allow us to roll out products besides the conventional ice storage systems that the country has seen so far. We are enabling storing of the cool energy that is freely available at night for desert regions and warm energy freely available during the day in cold regions of the country,” added Samit Jain, Managing Director, PLUSS Polymers.One of the most widely used applications of energy storage is in comfort cooling for commercial and process cooling for industrial set-ups. More than half of the energy consumed in a commercial building is for air conditioning. When all these buildings start together at 9 in the morning, it creates a huge surge in the power requirement. By 7 in the evening, these building shut down and load gets back to normal. The huge demand and supply mismatch leads to a shortage during the day, while often creating surplus power at night. Therefore, there is a huge interest of the government to implement demand response schemes and implement time of day tariffs for power.These systems, on one hand enable cooling the houses and buildings without running a diesel generator when users have a power outage and on the other helps transport fruits and vegetables safely and cost effectively without spoiling them on the way. A small amount of PCM can store a lot of energy like a couple of cubes of ice can cool a full glass of water. Therefore, when one has power or excess power, one can store energy in the PCM and then release it when there is a deficit.PCM-based thermal energy storage can enable to reduce the diesel generator consumption as well as take advantage of the demand response programs and differential tariffs offered by a utility. Being modular, these systems can be designed for and adapted to any size of a setup – from a few 1000 sq ft to a million sq feet office. So when there are lower tariffs, one can store energy which can be released during peak tariff hours. Another issue some people face is of limited power demand load allocated by utilities during some hours of the day – something that can be overcome to some extent using energy storage.In a general energy ecosystem, energy storage plays a critical role of bridging the supply demand gap which is as important as energy generation. Thermal energy storage is an extremely cost effective to provide centralised as well as distributed energy storage across the grid. In comparison to electrical storage with lithium ion batteries, the costs are almost a tenth and life greater than 10 years.“The government and policy makers need to encourage users to use thermal energy storage systems and provide them adequate incentives to do so too; alternative forms besides the now promoted solar energy need to be looked at seriously,” added Samit Jain.