Clean energy storage & management solutions… based on Compressed air

Low pressure air compression/expansion

The low-pressure compression/expansion of air is performed in HyPES systems by a rotary compressor/expander module based on an innovative “Co-rotating Scroll” concept with water injection. This technology results from more than 10 years of strong R&D collaboration with our academic partners from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL) and the University of Applied Sciences of Geneva (HEPIA), Switzerland.

 A Co-rotating (or Spinning) Scroll mainly consists of two eccentric spirals rotating synchronously at the same speed, whose assembly generates several “lunar crescent-shaped” involutes. When the machine rotates in one direction (compressor direction), these involutes move from the periphery to the centre while their volume decreases. Alternatively, when the machine rotates in the opposite direction (expander direction), the involutes move from the centre to the periphery while their volume increases (see the animation).

 A Co-rotating Scroll has many advantages compared to an Orbiting Scroll that has one fixed spiral and one orbiting (oscillating) spiral:

  • Pure rotational motion, allowing high speed (up to 10’000 rpm) operation and therefore high-power density. A co-rotating scroll compressor can deliver more than 3 times mass flow than an orbiting scroll of equal displacement.
  • Low relative speed between the two spirals, allowing high liquid ingestion capability (2-phase processes). Therefore, a substantial amount of water can be injected inside the compression/expansion chambers to control the air temperature and achieve near isothermal processes.
  • Oil-free operation
  • Low vibration and noise.