Ancient Firebrick Technology Could Offer Economic Way Of Storing The Energy

Researchers from MIT are working on a project that could introduce a low-tech, low-cost way to store excess renewable energy. Nowadays, the excess electricity produced from renewables is either lost or stored using popular methods like batteries or pumped hydro systems. These methods can be expensive, thus the scientists are looking into “the ancient technology of firebricks” as a possible inexpensive solution to the energy storage challenge.

Their concept is published in The Electricity Journal and the system is called “Firebrick Resistance-heated Energy Storage, or FIRES”. The excess electricity will be used to heat firebricks which then will be covered with an insulated casing so that they can provide energy later when it is needed.

Firebricks are not only less expensive than batteries and pumped hydro, but they can be made from various materials with varying degree of thermal conductivity.

According to MIT “The technology itself is old, but its potential usefulness is a new phenomenon, brought about by the rapid rise of intermittent renewable energy sources, and the peculiarities of the way electricity prices are set…” To see whether their system could work on a large-scale basis, researchers intent to build a real-world prototype. If successful, this could contribute to the widespread adoption of renewables.

Read the original article

Image Credit: Ted Hood / Public Domain

If you want to know more about this and other topics directly from end users of energy storage technologies join us at one of these annual events: The Energy Storage World Forum (Grid Scale Applications), or The Residential Energy Storage Forum, or one of our Training Courses.


Battery Storage for Commercial & Industry

Powerful battery storage offers many advantages in terms of saving electricity costs and a reliable power supply. With this technology, companies retain control of their energy supply and costs. The battery storage system is charged when energy is cheaply available and it supplies the stored electricity when prices are at their highest. With applications such…

Read More

Annual Installed Capacity Significantly Increases

While the global market was under the haze of the epidemic and many countries were still in lockdown, the energy storage market showed extremely strong resilience and began to recover and grow since Q3 and Q4 of 2020. According to the BloombergNEF report, the global energy storage market in 2020 has developed faster than expected,…

Read More

When Global Green Economy Met Energy Storage

Our energy system is dynamically evolving. The realization of the urgency towards Net Zero, Green economies has been more pressing than ever. The energy transformation serving a more sustainable future, safeguarding our ecosystem and protecting our planet is of paramount importance for many developed and developing nations across the globe. In this analysis, we delve…

Read More


“Probably the most interactive and well organized storage event on the calendar.”


Sales Director, S&C

“Great topics, competent speakers, good networking: keep it like that.”



“High scientific content, well targeted, perfect organization.”


Expert Technical & Governance, Elia

Excellent networking event. The sponsorship was well worth it.”


Manager, ATL

View More