Presently, renewable sources have to immediately sell all the energy they produce.
If there is no immediate demand it is wasted.
This is restricting the growth of the market, especially for large-scale offshore systems.
Renewable Energy Storage
Store extra energy where it is being produced, and use it when it is needed.
Storage allows better grid integration.
This means more renewables can be put to use, breaking existing market barriers.
The FLASC Technology
Our vision is to integrate large-scale energy storage into offshore renewables.
Batteries are simply not ideal in this scenario.
Our technology is tailor-made for the offshore market, exploiting existing infrastructure and supply-chains.
FLASC uses compressed air for energy storage, but it’s not your average compressed air energy storage system.
One of the key challenges for efficient compressed air storage is maintaining a stable pressure.
Existing concepts rely on the deep-sea hydrostatic pressure to solve this problem, but performance is dependent on water depth.
The FLASC dual-chamber technology allows the operating pressure range to be established independently of the deployment depth.
It exploits existing resources and infrastructure, resulting in a cost-effective solution, beating batteries at their own game.
The first prototype was deployed in Q4 2017 in the idyllic Grand Harbour of the Maltese Islands.
This set-up stores energy generated from an array of PV panels. The stored energy is released in a controlled manner, allowing close monitoring of the performance and efficiency of the device.
Comprised almost entirely from standard off-the-shelf components, the prototype is the ultimate proof-of-concept of our technology.
The prototype was constructed in collaboration with our industrial partner Medserv plc., with funding from the Malta Council for Science and Technology.
Cost Analysis: Floating Offshore Wind Farm
- Interest (i) = 7.5%
- Inflation (v) = 2%
- Lifetime (T) = 30 Years
- 100 Floating Wind Turbines
- Rating: 6 MW with 7.5 MWhr storage capacity
- Sea Depth: 150 m
- Capacity Factor: 45% (North Sea Conditions)
|Parameter||Wind Farm with
|Wind Farm with
|Capital Cost (€/kW)||6,979||5,660|
|Levelised Cost of Energy (€/kWhr)||0.141||0.126|
Renewable source deliver a power output that oscillates with time. However, grid operators can only accept small variations in supply.
The FLASC technology can be used to convert intermittent renewable energy supply into a stepped output.
This facilitates grid integration by allowing the operator to schedule operations at specific intervals.
When generating power from renewable sources, the natural conditions may change suddenly. This results in a rapid increase or decrease in output power.
The FLASC technology can be used to control the ramp rate, absorbing or dissipating energy to slow down rapid changes in output power.
This allows the grid operator to better adapt to changes in the natural environment.
The FLASC technology can also be used in applications requiring large volumes of cold pressurised seawater.
- Liquefaction of natural gas (LNG)
- Liquefaction of CO2 for carbon capture and storage
- Seawater desalination
- Water injection for oil extraction from subsea wells
The FLASC Technology is Patented.
Applications filed in:
- United States
- Europe (EPO)
Ref: WO 2016/128962 A1
Prof. Inġ. Tonio Sant
Senior Engineer (Team Leader)
Dr Inġ. Daniel Buhagiar
Senior Research Engineer
Dr Inġ. Robert Farrugia
Senior Research Engineer
Knowledge Transfer Advisor
Dr Inġ. Federica Maria Strati
Get in Touch!
Faculty of Engineering,
University of Malta,