MaimAir: A Flexible and Modular Energy Storage System for Tomorrow Energy Banks

D. Fargion, E. Habib
Rome University 1, Sapienza,
Italy

Keywords: energy storage, compressed air energy storage (CAES), adiabatic CAES, isothermal CAES,

Summary:

We considered a novel energy storage system based on the compression of air through pumped water. Differently from CAES on trial, the proposed indirect compression leaves the opportunity to choose the kind of compression from adiabatic to isothermal. The energy storage process could be both fast or slow leading to different configuration and applications. These novel storage system are modular and could be applied in different scales for different locations and applications, being very flexible in charge and discharge process. The system may offer an ideal energy buffer for wind and solar storage with no (or negligible) environment hazard. The main features of this novel energy storage system will be showed together with overall energy and power data. Despite CAES technology has already started being exploited, a lot of improvement is possible. In traditional CAES, compression of air takes place in the compressor, that is then moved to the storage vessel. Similarly, air is taken from the vessel and introduced in turbine for expansion. In the proposed system, air is compressed and expands directly in the storage vessel. This is done through a water piston that modifies air volume, reducing it during charge and increasing it during discharge. The water piston is used as heat storage so to absorb heat during compression and reject it during expansion, too. The new system is thus a Hydraulic compressed air energy storage (HYCAES). It is composed of high pressure storage vessel, almost full of air when fully out of power, an atmospheric pond for water storage, a water pump and a hydraulic turbine and connecting pipes. It is not ever-new, as there are some papers illustrating similar systems . In present paper, thermodynamic aspects of proposed systems will be analyzed to prove its energy feasibility.