This paper investigates the possibility of using a post-industrial ceramic commercially called Cofalit as a promising, sustainable, and inexpensive ($10/ton) thermal energy storage material. This ceramic presents relevant properties to store thermal energy by means of sensible heat in the temperature range of concentrated solar power (CSP) plants from ambient temperature up to 1100 °C. In the present study, the compatibility of this ceramic was studied with two conventional heat transfer fluids: nitrate molten salts for medium-temperature applications (200 to 500 °C) and air for high-temperature applications (500 to 900 °C). The use of this ceramic in direct contact with the heat transfer fluid should significantly reduce the cost of thermal energy storage systems in CSP applications and help to achieve the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative cost targets.

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