Vacancy No. ITAS 07-19

ITAS 07-19 Master Thesis: "Techno-economic Feasibility study of reactive Metal-based Energy Carriers for thermal energy storage"

Job description

There is a wide consensus that energy storage technologies are an important element to help provide continued stability to future decarbonised European energy networks. Reactive metals such as Na, Mg and Al can be easily produced (or regenerated) by electrolysis using renewable sources (Energy to X). These materials can be stored in the molten state, wherein the metals can act as thermal storage means. The temperature of storage can be adjusted taking advantage of the materials different melting temperatures (> 100°C for Na, > 700°C for Al and Mg). The heat can be used for energy generation by i) Heat by direct reaction with oxygen; ii) H2 (and heat) by reaction with water; iii) Electricity in fuel cells or primary batteries. Furthermore, all these materials can be easily transported (molten metals are easily delivered). It is also thinkable to carry out CO2 sequestration via formation of the metal carbonates.  It is expected that there is a high potential of the energy to x paths due to the Large-scale production of Al available worldwide (France, Germany, Norway ...). The aim of this work is to conduct an explorative techno-economic analysis of named materials and to develop further recommendations for research in the area. Expected results is to evaluate the feasibility of such storage concepts based on a generic and simplified use case.

The planned master thesis is a cooperation of KIT/ITAS (, CIC energigune ( and the KIT/HIU ( ) in frame of the European Energy Research Alliance and the joint program on Energy Storage (


The task includes within the scope of the above-mentioned topic description:

  • Conduct a comprehensive literature review of the field
  • Develop a use case in cooperation with EERA JP-ES-members and if possible relevant industry:
  • Define which materials will be analyzed in detail
  • Define first generic, simple business cases
  • Gather input and feedback from the industry
  • Build an explorative techno-economic model based on first findings
  • Provide a first explorative overview of the techno-economic feasibility
  • Critical reflection of results, recommendations for further research
Personal qualification

Students of industrial engineering, process engineering or similar disciplines

  • Basic technical and economic understanding of energy technologies
  • Good knowledge of MS Office, especially Excel
  • Independent and result-oriented way of working
  • Good English speaking and writing skills
Organizational unit

Institute for Technology Assessment and Systems Analysis (ITAS)

Starting date

as soon as possible

Contract duration:

Limited, 6 months

Contact person:

Dr. Manuel Baumann (Tel. +49 721 608-23215, Email:

Prof. Dr. Stefano Passerini (+49 731 50 34101, Email

Dr. Abdessamad Faik (+34 945297108,  Email:



Please apply online using the button below for this vacancy number ITAS 07-19.
Personnel support is provided by 

Ms Schaber
phone: +49 721 608-25184,

Hermann-von-Helmholtz-Platz 1, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, Germany

If qualified, severely disabled persons will be preferred.