This collaborative project led by SEGULA Technologies, Ireena, IMT Atlantique and Cetim is intended to develop the first compressed air energy storage demonstrator.
Through the ODySEA project and based on a demonstrator, SEGULA Technologies, Ireena, the Electrical Energy Research Institute of Nantes Atlantique, IMT Atlantique (Institut Mines-Télécom), a prestigious French higher education institution, and Cetim are seeking to prove that compressed air is an effective means of massive energy storage.
This process is in keeping with the values advocated by the energy transition. It is clean, environmentally-friendly and safer than most other energy storage methods. In addition, it accepts large quantities of energy with high-power facilities. However, until now the widespread accessibility of this process had been hindered by technological and economic factors. In particular, major thermal and mechanical constraints must be addressed: compression heats up the air and decompression cools it down significantly. Therefore the storage capacity of existing solutions remains low at approximately 40%.
A small scale demonstrator
The aim of the ODySEA project is to build the first demonstrator capable of bypassing these limitations through the use of a hydraulic principle. It involves pumping water to fill several compression chambers thereby decreasing the volume of air until the storage pressure is reached. This prevents the air from heating while at the same time increasing the capacity to approximately 70%. To restore the energy, the process of the conversion chain is the reverse. The air is decompressed at a constant temperature in the chambers, thereby pushing the water towards the pumps which operate as a turbine! This process was patented in 2015 by SEGULA Technologies then developed through the offshore technology Remora.
This 3-year project is funded by Ademe and has been certified by the competitive cluster S2E2. Cetim is responsible for the test bench, from the design to operation on its site in Nantes. It is studying the reversible hydraulic and pneumatic operation of the system by lending its expertise in the dimensioning of complex hydraulic networks.
ODySEA is in line with Cetim’s priorities with respect to the energy market especially as it relates to the offshore and renewable energy.
Watch the video on the Cetim France YouTube channel to learn more about the ODySEA project and the Remora technology.