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Passive Thermal Energy Storage based on PCMs for energy saving in air conditioning

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - TubeICE (Passive Thermal Energy Storage based on PCMs for energy saving in air conditioning)

Reporting period: 2017-07-01 to 2017-10-31

TubeICE is an innovative passive thermal energy storage solution, proposed by Phase Change Materials Productions Ltd. and able to achieve unparalleled energy density targets (55 kWh/m2 vs. 19-42 kWh/m3 of competing solutions) and application potentialities.
The technology is composed by a pipe shell where a Positive Temperature Eutectic solutions (PlusICE brand, developed and manufactured by PCMPro) is packed: in summer, the storage unit exploits the temperature gradient between night and days, being charged during the night (when temperature is lower) thanks to the solidification of the PCM and discharged during the day by the liquefaction of the material, thereby allowing a reduction of air conditioning energy consumption; in winter, TubeICE increases the thermal inertia of the building, being charged through material liquefaction when thermal energy is cheaper. By its application, the heat & cooling consumption in buildings can be reduced by 30%, thereby reducing the energy bills for End-Users, the consumption of fossil fuels and the emission of Green House Gases in our atmosphere.
In order to commercialize the technology, achieving the ambitious target of End-Users Pay-Back Time < 3 years, PCMPro needs to:
• develop a fully automated manufacturing line, able to reduce the production cost;
• certify the product for indoor environment application;
• industrialize the technology, protecting the intellectual property and launching the technology to prospective investors;
• develop and implement the go-to-market and commercialization strategy.
"The SME-Instrument Phase 1 project constituted the first step towards the achievement of the project targets and was focused on the following main activities:
1. the definition of the business model and of the go-to-market strategy, the development of a 5-year Profit & Loss forecast and of the SWOT analysis;
2. the update of the market analysis and of the competing solutions;
3. a rigorous quantification of the manufacturing line construction cost;
4. the definition of a work plan and budget for the Phase 2 (PH2) project;
5. the supply & value chains definition;
6. the IPR and ""freedom to operate"" analysis.

The main results obtained are:
• the TubeICE go-to-market strategy has been structured in three main phases: Preliminary Activities during Phase 2 project, Market Entry by own technical and commercial structure, Market Consolidation via Joint Ventures creation.
• The application of an automated production process would allow a significant reduction of TubeICE production cost (4.27 €/tube vs. the current 6 €/tube). The TubeICE market price target (manufacturing + installation) has been fixed at 6.32 €/tube (75.84 €/m2).
• The End-User simple Payback Time has been calculated: if the market price target is achieved, the TubeICE investment is repaid in 2.5 years.
• Thanks to the revamping of some equipment already available, the total cost for the pre-industrial plant fabrication and start-up has been quantified in 800 k€.
• Competitors analysis has been updated, confirming the unparalleled performance of TubeICE.
• A draft of the PH2 project budget has been provided: a total budget of 1.890.000 € is foreseen to carry out the project activities. A grant of 1.323.000 € will be required from the European Commission, while the equity of 567.000 € will provided by a mix of own resources and bank loans.
• Value and supply chains have been defined and studied.
• A SWOT analysis has been drafted and possible solutions to the challenges emerged in the SWOT analysis has been proposed (to be refined during the Phase 2 project).
• Key Stakeholders for TubeICE promotion and dissemination, for TubeICE certification and for TubeICE commercialization have been identified and some of them preliminary contacted.
• A ""Freedom to Operate"" analysis has been carried out, confirming the originality and innovativeness of TubeICE solution."
TubeICE is the first product able to penetrate the passive thermal storage market thanks to its disruptive properties (a break-through energy density value of 55 kWh/m2 vs. 19-42 kWh/m3 of competing solutions).
It is a matter of fact that improving European buildings energy efficiency is one of the main scopes of the European energy strategy. TubeICE tech allows a reduction by 10-40% of the energy consumption for heating and cooling in civil applications and assuming the integration of the TubeICE solution in 100,000 flats and 50,000 offices in Europe, the impact on the energy consumption and on the CO2,eq emissions can be quantified as follow:
• 700 GWh/y of thermal energy, equal to 50,360 tons/year of imported natural gas saving;
• 300 GWh/y of electricity saving;
• CO2,eq emissions avoided equal to 310 ktons per year.
By TubeICE market success, the environmental footprint of building heating and cooling will be drastically reduced.
Moreover, TubeICE will create new job positions in the passive thermal storage market: it has been quantified that in 2024, the direct personnel (tech office, General and Adm office, workers of production and installation departments) will be composed by 120 workers, while overall (including JV partners) TubeICE will create from 500 to 1,000 new jobs.