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Master Thesis: Conceptual development of construction processes for storage walls of pit thermal energy storages under consideration of recycling economy aspects


AEE – Institute for Sustainable Technologies (AEE INTEC) is an independent research association which was founded in 1988. Currently over 80 employees from 14 different nations are working at AEE INTEC. The institute constantly contracts out dissertations, master theses and internships. The activities of AEE INTEC include:

  • fundamental as well as applied research
  • national and international R&D projects
  • cooperation with universities, technical colleges, other research facilities and industry

The three major departments of AEE INTEC are “Thermal Energy Technologies and Hybrid Systems”, “Buildings and Renovation” as well as “Industrial Processes and Energy Systems”.

Research Project

Energy storage systems create a balance between energy supply and demand and are of essential importance for future energy systems with high shares of volatile renewable energies. The focus is not only on electricity storage, but also on heat storage, which enables not only short-term but also long-term (seasonal) heat storages. In particular, large-scale thermal energy storages (LTES) with volumes of up to 100.000 m³ could play a central role in increasing the share of renewable energy in local and district heating networks and in industry.

The aim of the "MoreStore" project is to generate the necessary basic knowledge to enable the implementation and construction of LTES, in particular the implementation of pit thermal energy storages (PTES) in Austria. For this purpose, tools are being developed which the project partners involved will be able to provide the necessary know-how for companies interested in realization of PTES in the future. In addition, the evaluation of possible construction methods for all storage components (e.g. cover, wall, bottom) in terms of civil engineering and construction economics is part of the project.

Outline of the Master Thesis

The master's thesis is part of an ongoing research project of AEE INTEC and should be conducted in close cooperation with the project team. The content of the master's thesis focuses on two major topics after an introductory phase in which the student is given a comprehensive insight into the state-of-the-art of PTES-technology:

  • the evaluation of appropriate civil engineering constructions, taking into account the structural, economic, geohydrological and thermal conditions for the storage wall and
  • a conceptual development of construction processes for the storage wall as well as its interfaces to other storage components (e.g. cover) under consideration of recycling aspects (e.g. potential for recycling the excavated material for the construction of the storage wall) for the economic assessment of the developed concepts.

We expect…

  • Interest in sustainable energy technologies
  • Solution-focused, independent, motivated and responsible working practices
  • Current/finished studies in the field of civil engineering or similar

We offer…

  • Paid Master's thesis, embedded in a current research project
  • Intensive support from experienced employees in the field of thermal energy technologies
  • Planned duration: 6 months, Start: April 2021, Place of realization: Gleisdorf, Austria

Thomas Riegler
t.riegler@aee.at, Phone: +43 (0)3112/5886-256