The Canadian company Thin Red Line Aerospace is conducting the first tests of a genuine system for storing energy in offshore wind farms. The Energy Bag stores compressed air in the seabed and releases it in accordance with demand for energy.
Energy storage to meet peak demand and ensure supply to intermittent winds, remain key issues for the development of wind energy.
The process is conceptually very simple: the turbines ‘inflated’ with compressed air balls in the seabed, which then serve to run electrical generators. Although initially the system was designed for marine wind farms, their use could be extended to the storage of energy from waves or tides. A technology that can exploit countries with relatively deep waters near their coasts.
Instead of designing a heavy pressure vessel capable of storing huge amounts of compressed air, Energy Bag uses its location on the seabed to behave like a pressure vessel, storing compressed air at very high pressures. The prototype weighs only 75 kg, but is capable of moving 40 tons of seawater.
Be installed at 600 m depth where the pressure is 60 or 70 times higher than in the atmosphere. The energy stored in a single bag can be considerable. “At a depth of 600 m there is enough pressure for a bag of 20 m in diameter around 70MW store hours of energy. That’s equivalent to about 14 hours of wind generation in normal conditions. ”
The cost will be infinitely less than the current system based storage batteries. Even be more economical than the hydraulic system by pumping water storage.